ANAHEIM, CA - The Anaheim Ducks would score three goals in the third period and would complete their comeback, downing the Edmonton Oilers 3-2.
The game marked the second night in a row that the Oilers pushed an elite NHL team to the brink of a loss with one-goal deficits. Moral victories may be hard to swallow, but with an injury riddled lineup the Oilers won’t hang their heads with tonight’s loss.
“I’ll tell you what, I don’t know what they’re proving to the people watching but they’re definitely proving something to me,” Oilers Head Coach Dallas Eakins said. “We’ve got an extremely banged up lineup, we’ve got some defencemen in there that have got very little experience, call ups and these guys are battling. I think there are a lot of people in our market that were wondering if (the players) were going to start mailing it in and believe me, I’m not going to sit here and accept losing games by a goal but it’s hard to critique that group when they’re fighting so hard.”
The Oilers had a huge chance in the second, but Taylor Hall’s five-hole attempt on a breakaway just over five minutes into the period was denied by goalie Frederik Andersen.
At 16:04 of the second, Philip Larsen put the Oilers up 1-0 with his third goal of the season. Larsen zinged a shot from the face-off dot and it hit Anaheim defenceman Bryan Allen’s foot and went in. Larsen was assisted by Martin Marincin and David Perron.
The Oilers started the third where they left off, but the Ducks would quickly bounce back.
Hall found Eberle backdoor less than three minutes into the final period to give the Oilers the 2-0 lead. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins earned the second assist.
“I thought we played really well,” Eberle said. “We were in sync the whole night, moving the puck well, breaking out well, just fate didn’t have it…”
The Ducks answered back as Corey Perry found twine from the slot at 3:28 of the third. Perry was assisted by Matt Beleskey and the goalie Andersen.
The Ducks tied the game at 8:35 of the third when the Oilers couldn’t get the puck out of their zone and a point shot by Stephane Robidas was tipped in by Perry out in front.
Francois Beauchemin hammered a shot from the top of the circle and it squeaked by Viktor Fasth for the Ducks first lead of the game at 18:39 of the third.
“We were up 2-0 and I think that should be enough for us to win today,” Fasth said. “I think for over 60 minutes, we played good enough to win but I think I should have had the third one for sure. I’ve got to do better for us to win.”
Fasth made 23 saves in the loss to his former team.