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Oilers vs Canucks Round 2 Game 4

May 14, 2024, 2:53 PM ET [30 Comments]
Sean Maloughney
Edmonton Oilers Blogger • RSSArchiveCONTACT
The Oilers officially have a goaltending problem. Despite outshooting the Canucks 42-18, Edmonton lost 4-3 against the Canucks in Game 3. Most of the damage was done in the first period with a hat-trick (one goal later credited to Lindholm) by Brock Boeser. There were some brutal mistakes in front of the net, most notably, an egregious giveaway by Warren Foegele. That being said at some point your goaltender needs to bail you out and make that extra save. That is not something Skinner has done in this series against the Canucks.

These numbers are made worse by this

Now a couple of notes need to be spoken of here. Stuart Skinner is only 25 and this is is second season in the NHL. None of this should label him as damaged goods or that he will forever be incapable of playing well in the playoffs. Oettinger had a rough go in Round 1 as did Connor Hellebuyck. These are two of the best netminders in the world.

That all being said, none of that helps the Oilers immediately. Skinner is struggling right now and as I started writing this blog it looks like Calvin Pickard is going to get the start tonight and Edmonton fans are going to hope for their own "out of nowhere overnight success" like the Canucks are getting with Silovs and the Golden Knights had with Adin Hill a year ago.

Regardless of who is in net, the Edmonton Oilers need to clean up their game at all ends of the ice. We have seen in all three games that the Oilers struggle against a superior team in terms of speed and that style of attack has led to the Oilers making a ton of unforced errors. Maybe with an untested Pickard in net the team will be far more aware of their roles in their own end.

Once again, scoring was led completely by the Big 5; Ekholm, Bouchard, McDavid, Draisaitl, and Hyman. Knoblauch needs to bring out the blender and get at least a couple of these players onto a different line to try and spread the scoring around.

McLeod has been excellent defensively but has no scoring touch. Nuge has made some great defensive plays but isn't scoring. Kane isn't shooting nearly enough. Nurse and Ceci are Nurse and Ceci. The defensive side of the game is important but in the case of RNH, McLeod, and Kane in particular, these players are top 9 or top 6 players that at some point need to bring something offensive. Knoblauch could keep Draisaitl and McDavid together if even two other players were clicking. Since that isn't happening, the duo needs to be split up. They can't keep relying on a handful of players.

A win tonight gives the team a slight breath, going into Vancouver tied 2-2. A loss tonight, especially if the goaltending let's them down will result in being down 3-1 heading into enemy territory, knowing you don't have a reliable netminder in place.

Thanks for reading.
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