Player Classes: Edmonton Oilers Florida Panthers

Player Classes: Edmonton Oilers Florida Panthers

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The Edmonton Oilers are dragging the Florida Panthers back to Edmonton, one agonizing mile at a time, thanks to a gusty, gritty and glorious 5-3 win in Game 6.

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The two Connors, Brown and McDavid were Edmonton’s heroes of the game, along with a sensational Stuart Skinner, who beat Sergei Bobrovsky in the nets.

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The Class A shots were Edmonton XX, Florida XX, with the subset of more dangerous 5-alarm shots being XX Oilers, XX Panthers

Cult of Hockey game rates player grades

Connor McDavid, 9. With majestic performances like this, he claims the Most Valuable Player in the playoffs. Quiet first period spent trying to get the hang of the bouncing puck. He came alive on Edmonton’s power play early in the second period, beating nearly four defenders in one attack and then earning an assist by setting up Bouch’s bomb. Moments later, he came down the wing, picked off a pass from Foegele and scored from a bad angle on Bobrovsky, making every gentleman NHL announcer from here to eternity say, “That’s one Bob would like to have back.” Bob’s Stinker Game. Moments later, McDavid made a move that only he can do; Late on a power play in Edmonton, he beat Eetu Luostarinen at the blueline, the split between Niko Mikkola and Dmitry Kulikov, passing Bob before making a nifty pass to Corey Perry for Edmonton’s fourth. He made some fierce backchecks in the third.

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Contributions to Class A shots (GAS): even power +0/-0; Special teams +0/ -0

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Zach Hyman, 8. He did what he does best: go to the net, screen the goalkeeper and deflect a shot into the net for Edmonton’s second goal. He caused enough commotion in Bob’s presence to allow for Edmonton’s third goal. He continued to push hard during the second period, getting two more Class A shots on net. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

Warren Foegele, 7. His hardcore hustle earned him the puck early in the second, which he handed off to McDavid for Edmonton’s third goal. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

Leon Draisaitl, 4. Not his best game with some questionable defensive moments. Another one of the Oilers who struggled to control the puck early. He made a mental mistake on the first goal in Florida, not realizing he was the last man back and therefore not being able to cover up Tkachuk, one of those “freebie” plays Zach Hyman talked about. He made a solid defensive stop moments later after a short rush from Aleksander Barkov. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

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Dylan Holloway, 4. He lost a board battle on the first goal in Florida – and it turned out he had no backup. He tripped Tkahcuk in the third, but Tkachuk’s blatant flop also drew a penalty. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, 6. In the first inning he took a dubious penalty. Made a dangerous shot to the side of the net on Edmonton’s power play early in the second period, then won the loose puck and returned it to McD on the scoring play. He failed to clear a brilliant set-up pass from Kulak in the third. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

Adam Henrique, 7. Won a board battle to kick off Edmonton’s first Class A shot. His failed clearance led to Florida’s third goal. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

Connor Brown, 8. I don’t want to hear any more whining, whining or whining about Connor Brown’s bonus pay. Agreed? This was shot from a cannon. Put him in front after Janmark’s early shot, and even more magic comes from the penalty box; The clever Brown stole a weak pass from Brandon Mountour, broke in alone, faked a shot and backhanded Bob to score the first goal of the match. But he and Janmark failed to carry Ekman-Larsson on Florida’s third goal. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

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Mattias Janmark, 6. He hit the first Grade A shot of the match on net after 15 seconds but failed to achieve much. He and Brown failed to stop the high shot on Florida’s fourth goal. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

Dirk Ryan, 5. He led a fourth line that saw some solid shifts. But he was beaten out of the corner after Rodrigues’ goal. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

Corey Perry, 7. He made no mistake in McDavid’s positioning and smashed home the goal. A solid defensive game in the third. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

Ryan McLeod, 5. He was focused on the puck and let Ekblad in for an early 5-alarm closing shot. But he allowed the final pass on Florida’s second goal. Good rush late in the game. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

Evan Bouchard, 8. The dreaded Bouch Bomb sent terror into Sunrise as he hit a shot on net that Hyman banked in for Edmonton’s second goal, giving him 30 playoff points, the fourth most for a d-man in NHL history . He then cleverly raised the puck down for Foegele to win and McDavid to score, putting him third in all-time scoring. But moments later, when he joined the rush and Draisaitl failed to cover him, Florida scored. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

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Mattias Ekholm, 7. He also got stuck in the ice before the puck was out of the Edmonton end on Florida’s first goal. His hard was given a hooking penalty in the second. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

Darnell Nurse, 4. Lots of chaos when he and Broberg were on the ice. He fought hard in this match, but Rodrigues’ goal deflected away from him. He was defeated moments later by Tkachuk during a wrap-around. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

Philip Broberg, 4. Looked a bit shaky at first. His turnover on the boards led to a nasty 5-alarm shot from Sam Reinhart. He was beaten on the rush after Ekman-Larsson’s solid shot in the second period. He was beaten out of the corner and onto the side of the net in Rodrigues’ goal. He made a solid defensive play late in the game to thwart a dangerous pass. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

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Cody Ceci, 7. Lost a corner fight that led to Ekblad’s early 5-alarm call. He screened Skinner slightly on the third Florida goal. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

Brett Kulak, 8. With a hard and excellent pinch in the third, they switched the ice, pulled two d-men over and set up Nugent-Hopkins for a 5-alarm shot. GAS: ES +0/-0; ST +0/-0.

Stuart Skinner, 9. Tall as a mountain in the opening minutes of the game, stops on 5-alarms from Sam Reinhart and an even more astonishing, extended grab from Ekblad’s harpoon. He had little chance on Tkachuk’s perfect shot, but came up with a huge stop on Ekman-Larsson. His turnover started the Sequence of Pain on Florida’s second goal, which was deflected by Nurse. A handful of good saves to end the second period. He had little chance on the third goal, a low-high pass followed by a partial screen and Ekman-Larsson’s harpoon. He was helped by Sam Bennett late in the third as he appeared to block a goal.

At the hockey cult

‘Edmonton was just rolling’: glowing review of city and Edmonton Oilers by major critic

McCURDY: Deep scores finally come to life

‘That was a blip’: NHL insider predicts Edmonton Oilers won’t face leaky Florida Panthers in Game 5

Player figures:

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