Player Ratings: St. Louis Blues score win, ripping Edmonton Oilers to pieces

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The Edmonton Oilers were beaten as badly as possible for a team in such a close game, with the Blues winning 2-0 on Saturday afternoon.

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The Oilers have been overrun, overrun and look badly out of sync. Edmonton’s vaunted offense looked clumsy, unable to make dangerous passes.

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The uncertain play continued late in the game when the Oilers missed a crucial power play with ill-advised turnovers.

In the end, Edmonton was only able to collect four Category A shots the entire game, after averaging 16.5 Category A shots per game in the first four games of the year.

The Blues had eight Category A shots in this low-event contest (running count).

Another stat that stands out, the Blues with 23 blocked shots to just eight for Edmonton.

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Connor McDavid, 4 years old. Not much bad, not much good. He made a major contribution with just one Grade A shot the entire game. He had a quiet game, just like the rest of the oil big guns. He was beaten hard by a Robert Thomas deke, but the Blues striker’s shot missed the top corner. He wowed the crowd as he juggled the puck with four quick slashes as he moved into the St. Lou area for a tricky backhand shot. But the pair of Nick Leddy and Colton Parayko snuffed out their line, with two-way ace Ryan O’Reilly.

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Evander Kane, 4. Intimidating hit on Nathan Walker in the first. He didn’t do much else until he slammed a pass from McD hard on the net midway through the third. He led the team with six hits.

Kailer Yamamoto, 3. Inefficient game, lost too many battles. He played the third most even-strength Oilers forwards, 19:20, but didn’t earn that ice.

Leon Draisaitl, 5. His ill-advised penalty for triggering the O zone in the first period led to St. Louis’ first goal. Had a good flurry late in the second RNH set up, then set up Hyman with a slick lunge feed early in the third. Good job on the backcheck to thwart a 2-on-1 St. Louis in the third. He landed a hard, sneaky high-lunge wrist late in the game. He lost the face-off leading to the Blues empty net.

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Ryan Nugent Hopkins, 3 years old. Did not bring his best effort. Finally made a play late in the second when Drai made a low-high pass and RNH drove a hard low wister onto the net. Threw the puck on the power play in third at a key moment.

Zach Hyman, 5 years old. Pushed hard but to little effect except for a dangerous shot in the third.

Ryan McLeod, 7 years old. The best Oil player other than Jack Campbell. His line came out well on the forecheck and was Oil’s best line all game. He set up Murray with a low-high pass into the slot late in the second, but Murray missed the net. A decent physical game. On the other hand, he won only three of the 12 confrontations.

Warren Foegele, 6 years old. Shoved hard and nearly broke in for a break-in chance at the end of the second, only to lose grip.

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Jesse Puljujarvi, 6 years old. Played his part in the only Oilers line to play well in the game.

Derek Ryan, 4 years old. Silent game. Ineffective.

Devin Shore, 4. Got a decent shot on net early in the second. Shortly after, he was checked and stripped of the puck, which led to a Blues 5-alarm.

Nurse Darnell, 5. Good defence, no offense in a 26 minute squad. A second-period turnover led to St. Lou’s zone o extending time. He was hit with four gifts by the official goalscorer. He made a solid sliding save in the d-zone slot late in the game. He kept a clean sheet at even strength, not a single major error on a Grade A shot against.

Cody Ceci, 6 years old. The defeat was not at the top. A solid break early in the game from a scary 2-on-1 Blues. Like Nurse, he kept a clean sheet, but those two failed to generate much offense.

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Tyson Barrie, 4 years old. Fumbled the puck twice in his own end early in the second, leading to a dangerous Blues shot. It’s not his best game to defend or move the puck.

Brett Kulak, 3. Ugh. A few bad, bad moments in his own ending. His Total-Eclipse-of-the-Sun screen on Jack Campbell caused St. Louis’ first goal. Almost recovered a moment later on a slick backhand lunge shot. For the second time in his year, he wiped out the backspin allowing an opposing forward on a breakaway, but Campbell stopped Jordan Kyrou where he had previously failed on Nazem Kadri. Late in the second, Kulak spat the puck leading to a St. Louis pass and tip from Justin Faulk to O’Reilly.

Evan Bouchard, 6 years old. Bad, more good. A sweet lunge pass to Kulak led to an early 5-alarm shot. His exit pass was taken out within a second, leading to a one-time Kyrou monster. He beat a three-way forecheck with a nice pass, unleashing a dangerous oil rush at third.

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Markus Niemelainen, 6. Solid two-way play, using his large body to his advantage. He also kept a clean sheet on Grade A shots at even strength. I don’t know why he played three minutes less than Murray at even strength.

Ryan Murray, 2. Didn’t come close to getting the job done. Scary d-area turnover in the first. His missed pinch early in the third led to a dangerous rush at Jake Neighbors. Too much gap leading to a cross pass and Brandon Saad harpoons a moment later.

Jack Campbell, 8 years old. He gave the oil a chance to come back. Again and again, the Campbell called Soup cleaned up the Oil d-men’s hideous mistakes. No real chance on St. Lou’s first goal with Kulak blocking his vision and Krug’s superb shot. Huge save early on when Kyrou burst into a breakaway, with the Sticktap of Shame coming from Kulak’s stumble. Kyrou’s dangerous snipe thwarted, O’Reilly’s backhand and Kyrou’s pinpoint shot in the second, with his save on Kyrou’s harpoon a potentially game-changing moment, and with Bouchard the culprit in the figure of business, giving Campbell the Sticktap of Shame on that one. Was huge again on O’Reilly’s point shot late in the second.

Staples on the policy

Travis Toews says ongoing work on Smith’s Sovereignty Act will address his concerns

Travis Toews and Danielle Smith participate in the final leadership debate of the United Conservative Party of Alberta on Tuesday August 30, 2022 in Edmonton. Greg Southam - Postmedia
Travis Toews and Danielle Smith participate in the final leadership debate of the United Conservative Party of Alberta on Tuesday August 30, 2022 in Edmonton. Greg Southam – Postmedia PHOTO BY GREG SOUTHAM /Greg Southam

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