|6:00 PM PT7:00 PM MT8:00 PM CT9:00 PM ET2:00 GMT10:00 7:00 PM MST9:00 PM EST6:00 UAE (+1)21:00 ETNaN:� BRT, November 14, 2017
Rogers Place, Edmonton, Alberta Attendance: 18,347
Oilers' offense explodes in rout of Knights
(TSX / STATS) -- EDMONTON, Alberta -- The Edmonton Oilers put a couple of slumps to bed Tuesday night with a convincing 8-2 win over the expansion Vegas Golden Knights.
The lowest scoring team in the NHL erupted for a season high goal total in winning at home for just the fourth time in 10 games.
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Connor McDavid scored twice each while Oscar Klefbom, Patrick Maroon, Matt Benning and Mark Letestu added singles in the rout.
"We've had a lot of tight, one-goal games," said Klefbom. "So it's nice to see some of the players who usually don't score a lot get some points tonight. I heard that 13 guys had at least a point for us tonight. It was a huge game for us."
The Oilers just finished off a 2-1-1 road trip in which they were held to two or fewer goals three times, so exploding for eight allowed everyone to exhale.
"It is definitely good for the confidence of the group," said Nugent-Hopkins. "We played well on the road trip, but didn't break out like we did tonight. We stuck with it and it paid."
The Knights came into Edmonton with just two wins in their previous seven games (2-4-1) as they try to stay afloat without their top three netminders (Marc-Andre Fleury, Malcolm Subban and Oscar Dansk are all on the shelf).
They are down to Maxime Lagace, who was under the gun all night long in just his eighth career start.
"Everything went wrong tonight," said Vegas coach Gerard Gallant. "We weren't skating, we gave them too many odd-man rushes and they're a talented team and they take advantage of that. Right from the start it wasn't a good game for us. I thought we got a little better in the second, but it was a bad game overall."
The Oilers started swarming Lagace early and it wasn't long until the floodgates opened. Klefbom scored short-handed at 6:28, Nugent-Hopkins made it 2-0 on the power play at 17:42 and Maroon made it 3-0 at even strength at 18:39.
And by the first intermission the game was all but over.
Edmonton made it 4-0 on a deflection from Benning at 10:19 of the second period before Vegas winger Pierre-Edouard Bellemare broke Cam Talbot's shutout a few minutes later.
The Oilers piled on in the third, with McDavid, Nugent-Hopkins and Letestu adding to the damage.
"We weren't sharp, we weren't good, we weren't playing our game," said Vegas defenseman Deryk Engelland "We sat back, we weren't in their faces like we normally play and a lot of us weren't ready to go. They played well, they got eight on us and we have to learn from that and move on."
The Oilers know they need to keep it going. They are still closer to the bottom of the Western Conference than they are to a playoff spot.
"We kind of put everything together tonight and things went well for us, we can't get away from that now," said Nugent-Hopkins. "There have been times this season, at home especially, where we have a good game then come out with a crummy one. We have to stick with this and play the same way."
Vegas played Junior goalie Dylan Ferguson (up on an emergency call up) in net for the last nine minutes after Edmonton made it 7-2.
"The other guy was cramping up a little bit and so we said we'll get the other kid in there and give him a chance to play," said Gallant, who's had so many goalies this year he's having trouble remembering their names. "He's a great kid and he went in and battled hard."
Ferguson couldn't hide the fact it was a thrill to play his first NHL game.
"Obviously it wasn't the outcome the team wanted, but for me, I'm just really grateful to get that opportunity," he smiled afterward. "It's really every kids dream and the fact that it was me, I'm really grateful for the opportunity, it all seems surreal."
NOTES: Vegas D Luca Sbisa did not accompany the Knights on their two-game road trip. He is listed as day-to-day with a lower body injury.... The Oilers made a bottom six trade before the game, sending slumping LW Jussi Jokinen to the LA Kings for C Mike Cammalleri, who has seven points in 15 games this year. ... The Knights have an NHL-best +14 goal differential in the second period this season. ... Injured G Malcolm Subban, who's been out since Oct. 22, is close to returning. He is on the team's road trip and took part in the morning skate Tuesday. ... The Oilers, who just returned from a four-game road trip, are home for just two games before heading back out on the road for five more. ... Oilers C Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has 11 points in his last 10 games after starting the season with three points in his first eight.
Updated November 15, 2017