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3 Takeaways from Oilers’ 4-2 Loss to the Wild


3 Takeaways from Oilers’ 4-2 Loss to the Wild NHL Trade Talk.

The Edmonton Oilers fell to the Minnesota Wild by a 4-2 final tonight. It marks the first time the Oilers have lost consecutive games since December 19th, showing just how dominant they have been over the past few months. It was a game where Edmonton dominated possession and peppered the Wild with shots in the second and third periods, but ultimately suffered a loss after two quick goals.

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Unfortunately, while they ran up the shot clock in this one, they came away with zero points. There were some good moments, but overall, despite outshooting the Wild 43-19, they weren’t at their best. Here are the three main takeaways from this one.

Pickard Was Not Good Enough

It isn’t fair to put all the blame on goaltending on a night where the losing team only scores two goals. That said, the Oilers made things easy on Calvin Pickard, and he still allowed three goals on the 19 shots he faced. While it’s hard to fault him for the first and third goals of the game, the second, which gave the Wild a 2-1 lead in the third period, was a shot from a bad angle by defenceman Jonas Brodin which needed to be stopped.

Boldy Scores Pickard Oilers vs Wild

Goaltending is starting to become a concern once again in Edmonton, as Stuart Skinner has struggled as of late, while Pickard doesn’t feel like a very reliable backup option. The 31-year-old came into this season having made just 18 NHL appearances over the past five seasons. It will be interesting to see whether or not general manager Ken Holland looks to shore up the Oilers’ goaltending position ahead of the trade deadline.

Slow Start for the Oilers

The Oilers have struggled to put together full 60-minute efforts since coming out of the All-Star break, and this game wasn’t much different. Instead of unraveling in the second period, however, they started this one out very slow and were lucky to head into the first intermission trailing only 1-0.

While the Oilers did manage to pick things up and control the majority of play for the final 40, it still felt as though they didn’t have a ton of jump to them. Perhaps that was partially intentional to save some energy for tomorrow night’s Battle of Alberta, though it may have been nothing other than an off night.

Oilers Depth Players Made Little Impact

The Oilers have gotten some great contributions from their depth players as of late, but that wasn’t the case in this one. Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl both had multi-point outings, while the only other two others to record a point were Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Zach Hyman.

While Pickard needed to be better, the Oilers are a team capable of generating much more offense than they did in this one. Despite all their shots, it didn’t feel like they had many ‘Grade A’ opportunities, something that will need to change if they hope to get back into the win column tomorrow night.

Looking Ahead for the Oilers

The Oilers will be back in action tomorrow at 8:00 pm MT against the Calgary Flames. They will then have two games at home to kick off next week against the LA Kings on Monday and the St. Louis Blues on Wednesday, before heading on the road to take on the Seattle Kraken on Saturday. All three are huge games as they look to jump ahead of the Vegas Golden Knights for second place in the Pacific Division.

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