Oilers vs Stars Round 3 Game 2

Oilers vs Stars Round 3 Game 2 May 25, 2024, 4:37 PM ET [21 Comments] Sean Maloughney

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The Edmonton Oilers proved not only that they have the ability to hang with the Dallas Stars in Game 1, but to exceed them as well. I wrote before that game that in order to win, Edmonton was going to need to have a full team performance and some help from their netminder. That is exactly what they got.

RNH-McDavid-Hyman

Shots: 7-5

GF/GA: 2-1

xGF%: 37.44%

Holloway-Draisaitl-Kane

Shots: 8-8

GF/GA: 0-0

xGF%: 66.31%

Foegele-McLeod-Ryan

Shots: 5-3

GF/GA: 0-1

xGF%: 40.51%

Janmark-Carrick-Brown

Shots: 2-3

GF/GA: 0-0

xGF%: 66.31%

The Stars certainly still had their chances and took advantage of moments in the game but overall Knoblauch did an excellent job at running his lines and even with the Stars having the matchups they wanted, Edmonton competed hard.

Stuart Skinner also had his best game as an Edmonton Oiler. The two goals that were scored (more on those in a second) can’t really be placed on him and through the Stars 5 different powerplays and an OT + 38 seconds, he certainly kept the team in the game. If Skinner can play at that level throughout this whole series, the scales will start to tip towards Edmonton.

On the powerplays… I hate criticizing refs or blaming them for games. I have no real disputes with any calls made against Edmonton. The McDavid 4 minute penalty was exactly that. The Holloway and Kane penalties were a little light but still technically penalties and if that is the way the game is going to be called for both sides – great. There were a number of opportunities where the Stars clutched or grabbed in a similar way to what Holloway was penalized for. The fact that the only penalty against Dallas was a bench minor is wild to me. I hope Holland or someone in Edmonton is sending a package of calls to the NHL before tonight’s game.

Edmonton once again had a 2-0 lead and once again, an errant, inexcusable turnover got their opponent back into the game. The first was a brutal turnover by Brett Kulak in his own end that resulted in a A+ scoring chance directly in front of Skinner. The second was Darnell Nurse trying to play goalie himself and the puck bounced off his stick to an open Seguin who should have been covered in some way by Vinnie Desharnais.

Ultimately Edmonton deserved that win and did so in exciting fashion in 2OT but they need to learn from their mistakes and find ways to clean up the blatant giveaways.

Tonight it looks like Roope Hintz is a game-time decision for the Stars. The top line centre is clearly still hurting from the hit he took in Game 4. If Dallas won Game 1, I bet they keep Hintz out of the lineup but now down 1-0 at home the pressure is on the Stars to try and even the series up. Hintz may play tonight but it’s clear he won’t be 100%; not that any players are this time of year but the Oilers will need to prevent him from finding his legs and jumping into game form.

Henrique is also very close to returning and many fans are debating where he should play in the lineup. Right now I think the best spot for Henrique is either centring or on the wing with Ryan McLeod and maybe Foegele or Ryan. The Carrick-Janmark-Brown line played fantastic against some of the Stars best in Game 1 and Janmark and Brown were key players on the perfect PK. Ryan is likely the odd man out but Foegele has been worse still by my eye.

McLeod had 5 hits in game 1 to Foegele’s 1. It was the most physical game we have seen from McLeod and while his scoring touch has dried up completely he is still an excellent playmaker.

Should be another high intensity game from the Oilers and the Stars and a phenomenal continuation of the Western Conference Finals!

Thanks for reading.

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