Oilers bounce back with 4-0 victory over Ducks
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Edmonton goaltender Cam Talbot knew he needed to be sharp early if the Oilers were going to bounce back Sunday against the skidding Anaheim Ducks.
Talbot made a couple of key saves in the first period that gave his team momentum on the way to a 4-0 victory.
It was a strong bounce-back win for the Oilers, who lost 4-0 to Los Angeles on Saturday night. They scored three goals in the opening period for the second time this season and controlled action on both ends of the ice despite being outshot 39-24.
Leading the way was Talbot, who made 39 saves for his first shutout this season and the 20th of his NHL career.
"I had to come up with a few big saves early and that gets the confidence going. I was just trying to weather the storm until we got going," Talbot said. "We got the big goal early, never really looked back from there and just kept piling them on."
It was Edmonton's fourth shutout this season and first against Anaheim since Jan. 25, 2017. The Ducks, blanked for the third time, have lost eight straight overall after winning four in a row and nine of 10.
Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl — who both had five-game point streaks snapped against the Kings — got back on track with goals. McDavid, tied for fourth in the NHL scoring race with 62 points, has five goals and eight assists in his last seven games. Draisaitl, who is tied for ninth with 52 points, has seven goals in the past seven games.
Jesse Puljujarvi and Kyle Brodziak also scored. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Caleb Jones each had two assists.
It was just Edmonton's second win in nine games but both have come during a four-game road trip, which concludes on Tuesday in San Jose.
"It was a huge win. We are now on a good road trip and can turn it into a great one," coach Ken Hitchcock said. "We went into the red zone and attacked more. We scored three goals because of the loose garbage we were able to pick up."
John Gibson made 20 saves for the Ducks, who are 0-2-2 during a six-game homestand — their longest of the season.
"When you're in a funk and in frustration mode, it's the hardest thing in the world when you work and don't get results and they score. That's how it felt tonight," captain Ryan Getzlaf said.
The Oilers opened the scoring at 7:37 of the first period when McDavid finally was able to get the puck under Gibson's blocker on his third attempt from in front for his 24th goal of the season. A no-look backhand from the slot by Puljujarvi at 16:05 and a short-handed goal by Brodziak with 11 seconds remaining marked the first time since Jan. 21, 2017, at Calgary that the Oilers have led by three or more on the road at the end of 20 minutes.
It was the third time this season Anaheim had allowed three goals in the first period but it was the first time it trailed by three or more in the period since Feb. 3 last season at Montreal.
Draisaitl scored his 23rd at 7:25 of the second when he corralled a shot by Jones that was blocked by Anaheim's Ondrej Kase and fired a wrist shot past Gibson to make it 4-0.
NOTES: Anaheim D Cam Fowler played in his first game since missing 23 after taking a puck to the face Nov. 12 against Nashville. The puck ended up breaking Fowler's right orbital bone, right cheekbone and right jaw bone, requiring surgery. ... Edmonton D Kris Russell returned to the lineup after missing 10 games due to a groin injury. ... Brodziak has four short-handed goals since the start of last season. ... Anaheim executive vice president/general manager Bob Murray became the fifth person in NHL history to both play and serve 1,000 games as a GM. He joined Bobby Clarke, Bob Gainey, Bob Pulford and Doug Wilson.
Oilers: Play at San Jose on Tuesday.
Ducks: Host Ottawa on Wednesday.