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Canucks fall 4-3 in overtime to Oilers in Game 2

The Canucks took three leads but couldn't hold any of them as the Oilers took Game 2 in overtime.
The Vancouver Canucks took on the Edmonton Oilers in Game 2 of their second-round series in the Stanley Cup Playoffs on Friday night.

The Edmonton Oilers loaded up their top line for Game 2 against the Vancouver Canucks, putting Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl together in hopes of tying up the series 1-1. 

It worked, but only just barely. 

The game kicked off with the Canucks' top players combining for the opening goal.

It had been ten games without a goal for Elias Pettersson between the regular season and the playoffs and he had just one goal in his last 20 games. So, Pettersson's sigh of relief might have been the only sound louder than the roar of the Rogers Arena crowd when he opened the scoring.

The goal came on an early Vancouver Canucks power play, as J.T. Miller stared down Oilers goaltender Stuart Skinner, freezing him in place before sending a no-look, cross-seam pass to Pettersson for a one-timer into the open net.

It was the first power play goal given up by the Oilers penalty kill all playoffs.

The other side of the Oilers' special teams responded, however, as Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl combined for a power play give-and-go that Draisaitl snapped past Arturs Silovs to tie the game.

A four-on-four in the second period led to the two teams again trading goals. The Canucks struck first, with Brock Boeser neatly tipping in a Carson Soucy point shot for his fifth goal of the playoffs.

The one-goal lead didn't last long. A pass from Soucy in Nikita Zadorov's skates led to a turnover in the Canucks' zone. Draisaitl nabbed the puck and tried to centre to McDavid, only for the puck to deflect off his skate to Mattias Ekholm, who fired it past Silovs.

Then the officiating took the spotlight, as the referees didn't see a blatant high stick by McDavid on Quinn Hughes that drew blood. What should have been a four-minute double-minor on the Oilers captain was missed entirely. When Pius Suter was called for a soft interference penalty on McDavid at the end of the second period, it only heightened the focus on the officials.

The Canucks still came out of the second period with the lead, however, thanks to yet another goal by the new Vancouver folk hero, Nikita Zadorov. Similar to a goal he scored against the Predators, Zadorov dashed up the left wing, then caught Skinner off-guard with a bad-angle shot that went just under the bar on the short side. 

While the Canucks have been excellent at holding leads in the third period this season, they couldn't manage it in Game 2. Soucy and Tyler Myers both made ill-conceived gambles at the Oilers' blue line: Soucy stepped up for an open-ice hit on Zach Hyman and Myers took a swing at the loose puck, only for McDavid to pull it past Myers to burst past him for a breakaway.

McDavid made no mistake, tying the game 3-3.

The Oilers took over the third period from there, out-shooting the Canucks 15-to-2 in the third. The Canucks were bending but didn't break, with Silovs coming up with several big saves and the skaters in front of him making key blocks to keep the score knotted at three through the end of regulation to send the game to overtime.

The perils of sudden-death overtime, however, are that one bad bounce can cost you a game. That's how it worked out for the Canucks, as a backdoor pass from Evan Bouchard was tipped into the net by Canucks defenceman Ian Cole as he attempted to intercept the puck.

Just like that, all of the third-period heroics to keep the game tied meant nothing.

Draisaitl finished the game with 2 goals and 2 assists, while McDavid tallied a goal and two assists, as the Canucks had no answer for the Oilers' big duo when they were on the ice together. They'll need to come up with one as the series heads back to Edmonton tied at one game apiece.


Need a more in-depth recap of the game? Read the I Watched This Game feature. Don't forget to follow @passittobulis on X/Twitter to stay updated on the Canucks throughout the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs.