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NHL: The Oilers’ free fall against the Stars continues

NHL: The Oilers’ free fall against the Stars continues

Things are going from bad to worse for the Edmonton Oilers.

The Oilers suffered a 4-3 loss to the Dallas Stars on Thursday night, only to see their poor start to the season continue. Edmonton was unable to take advantage of its victory in the last match, against the Calgary Flames, to revive itself.

The Oilers suffered their fifth defeat in their last six games. Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl were both suspended from scoring. Draisaitl was shut out for the second time in his last three games.

Back in the Oilers lineup, veteran Sam Gagner had little solace in the defeat. Gagner scored twice, as he has not scored a goal in an Oilers uniform since 2020.

Gagner signed his contract with the Oilers earlier this week. Evander Kane also scored in the Oilers’ loss.

The Oilers’ woes also stemmed from stellar offensive performances by Roope Hintz and Joe Pavelski, who each collected three points. Hintz scored twice and added an assist, while Pavelski finished the game with a goal and two assists. Matt Duchene also scored.

It was Duchenne who opened the scoring midway through the first half with his second goal this season. Entering the zone, Duchene fired a low wrist shot that allowed Dallas to take a 1-0 lead.

The Oilers played with some luck before halftime to tie the game. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins’ fall in the offensive zone caused the Stars to lose possession of the ball. Nugent-Hopkins recovered the ball and returned it to Kane, who scored with a good wrist shot.

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But the Stars took off in the second half and at the start of the third thanks to Hintz and Pavelski, who shared a three-goal lead. Pavelski set the tone for that momentum with an excellent one-time pass thanks to Hintz’s pass.

Later in the second half, Pavelski redirected the ball home and Hintz capitalized on the comeback to double the Stars’ lead. At the beginning of the third period, Hintz completed wonderful passes with Pavelski and Jason Robertson to make the score 4-1.

But the Oilers took advantage of the return of their veteran player to restore hope. Gagner first reduced the deficit to 4-2 when he pounced on a loose ball at the back of the net, before scoring his second goal of the game a few minutes later.

Edmonton was dangerous late in the game with some offensive threats, but Scott Wedgwood closed the door at every opportunity to give Dallas the win.

Wedgwood completed the game with no less than 47 saves. At the other end of the ice, Stuart Skinner allowed four goals on 27 shots.

The Oilers will face the Nashville Predators on Saturday, while the Stars will visit the Vancouver Canucks.

Hat-trick for Marchessault

Jonathan Marchessault scored his sixth career hat trick as the Vegas Golden Knights beat the Winnipeg Jets 5-2.

The Golden Knights remain unbeaten in regulation after 11 games this season. Their only failure was an overtime loss to the Chicago Blackhawks on October 27. They have gone on a three-game winning streak since then.

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Marchessault broke a 1-1 tie in the second set. He made it 4-2 with 5:47 to play in the third set and completed his hat trick into an empty net with 2:52 on the clock.

This is Marchessault’s fourth hat trick in the regular season, and his first since December 3, 2019. He also has a hat trick in the playoffs. His last came on May 14 when the Golden Knights eliminated the Edmonton Oilers in Game 6 of their second round series.

William Karlsson and Ivan Barbashev supported Marchisault with a goal and an assist each, and Alex Pietrangelo also had two assists.

Logan Thompson made 29 saves.

Kyle Connor and Alex Iafallo took care of the Jets offense with a goal and an assist each. Connor Hellebuyck made 21 saves.

Carlson scored the first goal of the match from a backhand kick after a back pass from Pavel Dorofeev. Carlson extended his point streak to eight games.

Marchessault then responded to Connor’s goal in the second half by hitting the goal on a breakaway. Shortly after, Barbashev added a goal to put the Knights ahead.

Ivalo reduced the gap at the beginning of the third goal, then Marchessault scored his second goal less than four minutes later. Then the result of the match was sealed with an empty goal.

McCann still has the Kraken

Jared McCann scored his third straight goal and had an assist as the Seattle Kraken beat the Nashville Predators 4-2.

McCann has five points in his last three matches. He has six goals since the start of the season.

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Philipp Grubauer made 32 saves for the Kraken, who won their second straight game.

Olivier Bjorkstrand, Brian Dumoulin and Vince Dunn scored for Seattle, and Justin Schultz made two assists.

Tommy Novak and Roman Josi scored for the Predators, and Jose Saros stopped 27 shots.

Novak opened the scoring for the Preds in the first period, but McCann put the Kraken ahead before the end of the period by setting up Bjorkstrand’s goal and scoring in the final five minutes.

Josi tied the game in the second, but Dumoulin immediately put Seattle back in control 24 seconds later.

Dunn completed the scoring midway through the third period.