Oilers 7 Bruins 4
EDMONTON — Connor McDavid knows that scoring goals isn’t his team’s concern.
Leon Draisaitl had a goal and two assists and McDavid added three assists as the Edmonton Oilers won their second game in a row, beating up on the Boston Bruins 7-4 on Thursday.
Combined with their 7-1 win over Dallas on Tuesday, the Oilers have 14 goals in their last two games. But the Edmonton captain says his team needs to tighten up in the defensive end.
“We can’t expect to keep doing that,” McDavid said about the recent scoring. “It’s good that we are finding ways to create offence, but we also gave up a lot of chances tonight. Giving up four goals is not good enough.”
Patrick Maroon had a pair of goals and Benoit Pouliot, Anton Slepyshev, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Milan Lucic also scored for the Oilers (37-24-9), who moved one point ahead of Calgary for third place in the Pacific Division.
“You need to have scoring from all over,” Draisaitl said. “You can’t rely on one or two lines. You need all four lines going and the last couple of games we have really had that. It is definitely a nice feeling to put up some goals like this.”
David Pastrnak, Brad Marchand, Dominic Moore and David Krejci replied for the Bruins (38-27-6), who had a four-game winning streak snapped.
“We didn’t play well,” said Bruins assistant captain Patrice Bergeron. “I think it was just an awful game by everyone and it’s just proof that you can’t rely on what we’ve been doing lately.”
The Oilers jumped out to an early 2-0 lead on a pair of goals just 59 seconds apart by Maroon, who upped his career-high goal total on the season to 24. Edmonton got another goal three minutes later as David Desharnais hooked around the net and sent the puck in front to Pouliot, who poked it past Boston goalie Tuukka Rask. It was Pouliot’s second goal in as many games after breaking a 28-game scoreless drought against Dallas on Tuesday. Boston got one back on a power play of its own with seven-and-a-half minutes remaining in the opening frame when Marchand made a perfect pass to set up Pastrnak at the side of the net for his 31st goal of the season, and fifth in his last five games.
The Bruins made it 3-2 with two minutes left in the first, as Marchand was left alone at the side of the net to score his 37th goal of the season and 12th in his last 11 games.
The high-flying first still had one more goal left in it, as the Oilers scored with 51 seconds remaining with Slepyshev batting the rebound of a McDavid shot out of the air and past Rask. Edmonton made it 5-2 two minutes into the second on the power play. Drake Caggiula’s pass went off of Bruin Riley Nash’s skate and was touched by Nugent-Hopkins on the way into the net. Caggiula was originally credited with the goal before it was changed. Rask was replaced in the Boston net by Anton Khudobin.
Boston fought back again a couple minutes later, getting a short-handed goal from Moore.
Draisaitl made it 6-3 Edmonton seven minutes into the second, picking off a pass at mid-ice and going the distance to score his 60th point, the most ever in an NHL season by a German-born player.
Edmonton added another power-play goal with five minutes left as a puck hit Lucic and got past Khudobin. It was the second game in a row that the Oilers have scored seven goals, and the first time they had done that at home since 1988.
Krejci scored on a Boston man advantage with 32 seconds left in the middle period.
There was no scoring in the third, but a brief scare when Boston forward Matt Beleskey was hit in the right side of the head with a shot from Bergeron in the game’s final minute. He was slow to get up, but skated off with the assistance of Bergeron.
The Oilers host Vancouver on Saturday while the Bruins are in Toronto on Sunday.