Oilers’ 16-game win streak snapped by Knights (1:42)
The Las Vegas Golden Knights grab a 3-1 win to break the Oilers’ 16-game win streak. (1:42)
ESPN News Services
Feb 7, 2024, 12:52 AM ET
Chandler Stephenson scored the go-ahead goal, Adin Hill stopped 30 shots and the Vegas Golden Knights brought an end to the Edmonton Oilers’ 16-game winning streak with a 3-1 victory on Tuesday night.
Edmonton was looking to tie the 1992-93 Pittsburgh Penguins for the longest NHL win streak.
Instead, with the game tied 1-1 after two periods, Stephenson took a pass from Jonathan Marchessault and ripped a shot from the center of the left circle to beat Edmonton goalie Stuart Skinner blocker side to put the Golden Knights in front by a goal less than two minutes into the third period.
From there, Hill was spectacular in keeping the Oilers at bay while keeping the crowd energized until the final horn.
“I liked a lot of the parts of our game,” Edmonton captain Connor McDavid, who scored in the loss, said. “I thought it was a similar type game that we’ve played throughout the streak. We just didn’t find a way to get a win. Their goalie played well, and made some big saves.”
Hill, who came in leading the NHL in goals-against average (1.94) and save percentage (.936), made the save of the night when he stymied Leon Draisaitl on a backdoor one-timer late in the third period.
Nic Roy and William Karlsson also scored for the Golden Knights.
“Unfortunately, we came up a little bit short,” Edmonton coach Kris Knoblauch said. “I think a big turning point in the game was the late goal [Vegas] scored in the first period. And then for us, it was just missed opportunities. I think the chances were there.”
Skinner made 23 saves in the loss, and Draisaitl and Vincent Desharnais picked up assists along the way.
“We couldn’t bear down on our chances, I felt,” Edmonton defenseman Mattias Ekholm said. “I felt we created a lot in the second [period], probably deserved a goal or two. In those tight games, those little details, those timely goals matter in a big way.”
The Oilers, who opened the season 3-9-1 before firing coach Jay Woodcroft on Nov. 12, were just 13-15-1 before their win streak started. Edmonton hadn’t lost a game since Dec. 19 and has improved its record to 29-16-1.
The Oilers have an NHL-best 26-7-0 record since Kris Knoblauch’s first game as bench boss on Nov. 13.
“There were some breakdowns, it wasn’t a perfect game,” Knoblauch said. “But overall, I thought the effort was good, and we just couldn’t capitalize on our chances.”
Edmonton wasn’t deterred by committing the first penalty game. After Desharnais’ poke check forced a turnover to spring a 2-on-0 rush, McDavid took a pass from Draisaitl and beat Hill to give the Oilers a 1-0 lead with a short-handed goal.
It was McDavid’s 10th goal and 27th point during the Oilers’ 17-game run.
“We have to move on,” McDavid said. “We have to play some good hockey coming down the stretch here.”
Vegas tied the game when Roy gathered a rebound from the crease, worked the puck to his backhand and snapped it past Skinner for his 10th goal of the season.
“It felt like a playoff game tonight,” Hill said. “It was loud, fans were into it, so, it was a good atmosphere.”
Karlsson’s empty-net goal with 34 seconds left iced the game for Vegas.
“It was a tight game, it could have gone either way,” Ekholm said. “I thought we played pretty good, [but] there’s another level to our game.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.