Thursday, May 23, 2024 08:30 PM (ET)

Connor McDavid's goal in 2nd OT gives Oilers 1-0 lead over Stars

Field Level Media
May 24, 2024

Failing to convert another golden opportunity was not an option in Connor McDavid's eyes.

McDavid wasn't lamenting after he scored in double overtime to give the visiting Edmonton Oilers a 3-2 victory over the Dallas Stars in Game 1 of the Western Conference final on Thursday.

"Glad that we were able to get the win, otherwise I would have had a tough time sleeping," McDavid said, alluding to being denied on a golden chance in the first overtime.

The Oilers surrendered a two-goal lead but recovered thanks to McDavid's ability to rise to the occasion. He redirected a crossing pass from Evan Bouchard 32 seconds into the second OT for his third goal of the playoffs.

"We're not surprised in here. He's the best in the world," Oilers defenseman Mattias Ekholm said. "He had a good look in the first overtime, too, to get it done, and my experience being here, he doesn't get denied twice."

Game 2 will be Saturday in Dallas.

McDavid and Zach Hyman each collected one goal and one assist for the Oilers, while Leon Draisaitl added a goal. Goaltender Stuart Skinner made 31 saves, eight of them while killing all five Dallas power plays, including a double-minor handed to McDavid in the opening minute of the first overtime.

"A big thing for us was calming down," Skinner told Sportsnet. "It was massive getting that PK done, four minutes for them. ... It was a big effort from those guys and using that momentum to carry on into the second overtime."

Tyler Seguin scored both goals for the Stars, who have lost seven consecutive series-opening games. Jake Oettinger stopped 35 shots.

Draisaitl extended his point streak to 13 consecutive games to kick off the playoffs when he opened the scoring 58 seconds into the second period by burying a loose puck from the left circle for his ninth goal of the postseason.

Hyman doubled the lead at 4:17 of the period when he pounced on a loose puck for his 12th score of the playoffs.

Seguin jolted the Stars to life when he put them on the board two minutes later by being on the spot to shovel the loose puck into the net. He tied the clash with 3:23 remaining in regulation when a blocked shot at the edge of the crease came right to him to push into the yawning cage for his fifth of the playoffs.

"We played a good enough game to win and so did they," Seguin said. "It's inches out there. I thought it was a great hockey game. We've been here many times."

The Stars, who finished atop the Western Conference in the regular season, dropped the first two games at home to the Vegas Golden Knights before regrouping and claiming their opening-round series in seven games. Dallas also lost Game 1 in the semifinals before roaring back and beating the Colorado Avalanche in six games.

The good news for the Stars is knowing the recipe that has allowed them to climb out of this kind of hole before.

"We're just going to have to be better," captain Jamie Benn said.

--Field Level Media

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