The Edmonton Oilers jumped out to a 16-7-3 start to the season, but have gone just 3-7-1 since then, including their 2-1 loss to the St. Louis Blues. Their decline is unfortunate, but there was one big warning sign even when they were doing well.
One of Edmonton’s bigger problems last season is a nearly complete lack of secondary scoring. Leon Draisaitl and Connor McDavid were amazing, but without help, it wasn’t enough. The concern about the Oilers’ depth didn’t go away this season, it just didn’t matter much because McDavid and Draisaitl weren’t just amazing, they were scoring at a nearly historic pace. Through 26 games, McDavid had 47 points and Draisaitl had 48 points. The Oilers had some other contributors over that span. James Neal had an amazing October, though his hot streak was already well in the rear view mirror well before the Oilers started to slow down, and Zack Kassian had 18 points in 26 games, though it helped that he was playing with McDavid and Draisaitl.
Over the Oilers' decline, the big difference has been that McDavid and Draisaitl have played like mere mortal stars. McDavid has 12 points in his last 11 games while Draisaitl has 10 points over the same span. That’s great, but apparently it’s not enough to compensate for the rest of the Oilers. Of course, if the Oilers’ success relies on McDavid and Draisaitl each averaging nearly two points a game, then Edmonton’s not going to go far.
Editor's Note: Drafting is only half the battle. Dominate all season long with our Season Pass! Use our NEW Lineup Adviser, get our Weekly and Rest-of-Season rankings and projections, track all of your players and more on your way to a championship! Click here for more!
NEW JERSEY 3 ANAHEIM 1
Adam Henrique scored the Ducks’ lone goal. It was his 10th marker and 17th point in 35 games.
Ryan Miller saved 17 of 20 shots last night. He’s allowed at least three goals in five of his last six starts.
Kyle Palmieri netted the game-winning goal. It was his 13th goal and 21st point in 33 contests.
Sami Vatanen also found the back of the net for New Jersey. That gives him five goals and 14 points in 29 games.
Mackenzie Blackwood stopped 26 of 27 shots Wednesday night. He has a 10-9-4 record, 2.77 GAA, and .910 save percentage in 25 contests.
COLORADO 4 CHICAGO 1
Ian Cole scored a goal and registered an assist. The Avalanche defenseman is up to two goals and 14 points in 29 games.
Mikko Rantanen also had a goal and an assist for Colorado. He has 10 goals and 24 points in 18 contests.
Chicago’s only goal was scored by Ryan Carpenter. It was his second marker and ninth point in 34 games.
Corey Crawford stopped 32 of 35 shots last night. He’s lost his last three starts, allowing 12 goals over that span.
Pavel Francouz saved 31 of 32 Blackhawks shots. He’s only allowed a single goal in each of his last three starts.
ST. LOUIS 2 EDMONTON 1
Edmonton’s goal was scored by James Neal. He has 16 markers and 23 points in 37 contests.
Brayden Schenn found the back of the net for St. Louis. He’s up to 15 goals and 27 points in 36 games.
Mackenzie MacEachern netted the game-winning goal. It was his sixth marker and eighth point in 29 contests.
Jake Allen saved 35 of 36 shots on Wednesday. He has a 6-2-2 record, 2.21 GAA, and .930 save percentage in 11 games.
At the other end of the ice, Mikko Koskinen turned aside 42 of 44 shots. He’s 12-6-2 with a 2.62 GAA and .919 save percentage in 22 contests.