Oilers' high-powered offense held in check again, and they head home in 0-2 series hole in Cup final

Tue, Jun 11, 2024
NHL News (AP)

Oilers' high-powered offense held in check again, and they head home in 0-2 series hole in Cup final

SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) - The Edmonton Oilers left Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final feeling pretty good.

They were shut out three goals to none, but it took a monumental performance from Florida Panthers goalie Sergei Bobrovsky to neutralize their offensive firepower.

The Oilers weren't shutout Monday night, but the result was the same - another loss, this one putting Edmonton in an 0-2 hole as the series shifts to Canada.

One of the highest-scoring teams in the NHL, Edmonton has managed just one goal in the first two games of the final.

The Panthers outshot the Oilers 22-7 through the first two periods Monday.

Edmonton's seven shots on goal through 40 minutes were the fewest by a team through two periods of a Stanley Cup Final since Game 6 of the 2006 championship series when the Carolina Hurricanes managed that many on goal against the Oilers.

That's one game after Edmonton outshot the Panthers 32-18 in a Game 1 performance that star Connor McDavid described as a confidence booster.

McDavid, who was kept off the scoresheet in Game 1, assisted Mattias Ekholm on Edmonton's only goal of the night. It was a 4-on-4 shot on the Oilers' first shot on goal of the game.

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McDavid, who leads all postseason scorers with 32 points, now has 17 points in games following a loss this postseason.

But Edmonton's other star, the 2020 league MVP Leon Draisaitl, still has no points in the series and hasn't been much of a factor. Draisaitl was penalized for roughing in the third period when he shoved Florida captain Aleksander Barkov.

Goalie Stuart Skinner, for his part, followed his 15-save performance in the opener with 24 on Monday night.

The experience of the Panthers, who were in the final just a year ago, has clearly frustrated the Oilers, and Florida has found a way to limit them at what they do best - Edmonton came into the series with the best power play in the postseason at 37.3%, but is now 0 for 7.

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AP NHL playoffs: https://apnews.com/hub/stanley-cup and https://www.apnews.com/hub/NHL

ALANIS THAMES Thames is an Associated Press sports writer based in Miami. She previously covered sports for the New York Times. "
Article Copyright © 2024 The Associated Press, All Rights Reserved.
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