December 10, 2023

Thatcher Demko made 40 saves as the Vancouver Canucks beat the Edmonton Oilers 6-2 Monday night.

The Oilers record sinks to 2-8-1 as they continue to suffer through one of the worst starts in franchise history.

“I don’t think I’ve ever had a worse start to a season in my career”, defenceman Mattias Ekholm said.

The Oilers came out on fire, outshooting the Canucks 19-2 through the first eleven minutes of the period. They grabbed the lead 6:42 into the game on an Ekholm power play slapper. However, the Canucks replied with three goals in 3:22. Quinn Hughes had his pass go on off Vincent Desharnais’ stick. Pius Suter and Brock Boeser would add goals by beating Stuart Skinner with shots from the slot.

“We did a lot of good things in the first period and found ourselves down and chasing the game”, Connor McDavid said.

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Ekholm took a deep sigh when asked about opposing teams making a quick comeback.

“I think the last two, three games we had great starts. For some reason we find ourselves in a deficit going into intermission.”

Leon Draisaitl ended a seven-game goalless drought in the second. Dylan Holloway collided with Canucks goalie Thatcher Demko at the side of the net, allowing Warren Foegele to set up Draisaitl for a tap in. Nils Hoglander replied for Vancouver by firing in a rebound off a two-on-one.

The Oilers briefly celebrated a goal off a scramble in the crease one minute into the third, but the officials went to video review and ruled that Foegele kicked the puck over the line. J.T. Miller bombed in a power play goal to make it 5-2 Canucks.

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Oilers head coach Jay Woodcroft was ejected from the game after yelling at a referee with 6:47 left.

“I asked about the play on (Dylan) Holloway. It wasn’t profanity laced, it was a question. It wasn’t well received when I asked the question. I got to be better, I can’t take a penalty to put our team down”, Woodcroft said.

“He’s a passionate guy, like we all are. That happens”, McDavid said of Woodcroft’s ejection.

Boeser added a power play goal in the final minute.

The Oilers will visit the San Jose Sharks on Thursday (630 CHED, Face-off Show at 7 p.m., game at 8:30 p.m.)

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