The Edmonton Oilers used three third-period goals to overcome the Dallas Stars 6-3 at the American Airlines Center on Wednesday.
In their first game back home following a five-game road trip, the Stars struggled to play a complete game.
When returning from a long trip, especially a very successful one like Dallas had, the first game back can be a sort of trap game. Although the Stars were hoping to avoid the letdown and not allow excuses to come into play, their game suffered, as they committed far too many turnovers and were eventually overpowered by Edmonton.
“Tough situation after that long road trip, and try to find a way tonight," Tyler Seguin said. "But we understand every team does that, every team has those games where they have excuses if they want them. We don’t want them, and we’ve got one more game to respond.”
The Stars started the game well, pumping a few chances at Stuart Skinner and getting on the board first, as Jason Robertson found Roope Hintz for a one-timer off the rush in the final five minutes. But before Dallas could even attempt to build on the lead, former Stars forward, Mattias Janmark, finished off a beautiful backdoor pass from Klim Kostin, and the game was tied just one minute later.
The two teams traded off goals in the second period.
Just 27 seconds into the middle frame, Wyatt Johnston took a long stretch pass from Mason Marchment and beat Skinner over the blocker for his ninth goal of the season, and likely his most skilled. Marchment is a newcomer on the Stars third line with Johnston and Jamie Benn and recorded two assists in the game.
“Mush made a pretty nice pass, and I had my spot all the way,” Johnston said. “Just waited until it was the right time to shoot.”
The kid's got a laser. 👀👀👀
— SportsDay Stars (@dmn_stars) December 22, 2022
“He brings a lot to the line,” Johnston said of Marchment. “He's a big presence on the ice. Him and Jamie can create space for not only themselves but also me. I think he’s done a really nice job and we’ve had some good chemistry in the few games we’ve played together so far.”
Once again, the Stars had a one-goal lead, but once again, it didn’t last long.
Just over two minutes later, the Oilers got on their first power play and wasted no time, as Zach Hyman slammed home a rebound on top of the crease to tie the game at two.
Edmonton took their first lead of the game about midway through the period but the Stars answered right back on a Tyler Seguin power-play goal in the late stages of the period. As they did in the first, the two teams finished the period all even.
But in the third, things began to unravel for Dallas.
First, a rare Miro Heiskanen turnover in the Stars end led to a Warren Foegle goal, giving Edmonton the 4-3 lead. Then, Connor McDavid finally broke onto the scoresheet off of an up-ice turnover and poor pinch from Dallas, beating Jake Oettinger five-hole and putting the Stars in a world of hurt.
— NHL (@NHL) December 22, 2022
Janmark added his second of the game into the empty net and the Oilers skated off with a well-deserved 6-3 victory in Dallas.
“It was a strange game. We were a little bit sloppy,” Stars Head Coach Pete DeBoer said. “We anticipated we would be a little bit, I was hoping we would work our way out of it. But you can’t hand a team like that goals, and I thought we gave them some goals. If you are going to make those mistakes against a team like that, you are going to have to score five or six to win.”
Milestone: With an assist in the second period, Jamie Benn recorded his 800th career point. He became the third player in franchise history to do so, joining Mike Modano and Neal Broten.
Sam’s Three Stars
- First Star: Mattias Janmark, EDM (2 goals, 1 assist)
- Second Star: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, EDM (1 goal, 2 assists)
- Third Star: Mason Marchment, DAL (2 assists)
He Said It
“It was an even game in the third. We made some mistakes, we had a chance with a short power-play with about 10 minutes left. We didn’t manage to get set up and obviously, they score the goal. I don’t think McDavid was the story tonight until maybe the end,” DeBoer said.”