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Can the Edmonton Oilers Repeat Their Game 4 Win Back in Florida?

The Stanley Cup Final heads to Game 5 as the Edmonton Oilers beat the Florida Panthers in Game 4 with a score of 8-1. Connor McDavid led the Oilers with three assists. McDavid now has 32 assists in the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs as he broke Wayne Gretzky’s career record of 31 assists in the playoffs.

McDavid was showing off his full fury of on-ice skills. Since the Western Conference finals, McDavid has been the best player for the Edmonton Oilers. As he did in Game 6 against Dallas, McDavid put the Oilers on his back in Game 4, and finally broke through.

Stuart Skinner Rebels Against Edmonton Oilers

As TSN Hockey Analyst Martin Biron said on SportsCenter with Jay Onrait, he was impressed with the way McDavid was able to open up to Sergei Bobrovsky, but there have been signs in the past three games.

“But you know what I mean: scoring second is important, right? And it’s good, but it’s about Connor McDavid and his production and putting the team on his back and look when he scored that goal that was a big sign for me because in Game 3, if you look at Connor McDavid, he had a few. good chances and he kept hitting Bobrovsky right in the chest right there. Boom, he hits Bobrovsky, and he doesn’t even go down, and he does a backdoor blade to save Bobrovsky’s hits. So now in Game 4, the one who was shooting from a little distance, outside the goal and inside, and I saw for the first time that wow, McDavid was able to beat a clean goalie in the playoffs.”

Florida Panthers Show Why Playing Defense Still Matters

Without McDavid, the Edmonton Oilers have been clicking on all cylinders. Offensively, the Oilers were electric, up and down their production, including two special teams goals: a short one to open the game and a power play goal. And the power play goal is huge for the Oilers. Instead of 0-16 in the series, they are 1-15, which should give the Oilers confidence heading into Game 5.

Not to mention the Edmonton Oilers are back to playing defense. This same level of defense led to as many seven-game winning streaks during the season as Biron went on.

“We all know that the Oilers can win high-scoring games, but that hasn’t been the case in the playoffs when they’re out by three or more, they’re 3-9, so it’s not very close to the success they’d like to have. So, first of all, it’s Stuart Skinner, right? He made some very big saves at important times, although it was 8-1 when it was 2-1 when he made that against Carter Verheaghe which was very important.

You know, I felt like the Oilers handled the Florida Panthers’ front a lot better and all these stretch passes slowed the front down. It put a lot of space between the forwards and the D so that was important. Great support, great back check. But we all know Stuart Skinner can be hot. The Oilers can get hot defensively. It’s fun to score goals. But this season, that 16-game winning streak, the Oilers had to give up three goals in one game of the series and three goals in the second game, then went 14 in a row and gave up four or fewer. That’s how you win games when you’re the Oilers.

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I know you have McDavid, Draisaitl, and Hyman over 50 goals and everything, but it’s about playing well defensively and giving some support to Stuart Skinner, who was a good player in Game 4.

And now you don’t need to win 14 in a row. You have to win three in a row. You got one and you have to win three in a row. Just get one win and bring it home to Edmonton in Game 6. That’s really the key, but they can come out defensively.”

There is a belief in the entrance room. As Connor McDavid said after Game 4, the Edmonton Oilers are going back to Alberta regardless, so they want to bring the Florida Panthers.

If the Oilers play like they did in Game 4, they might.

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