NHL News

Oilers pass ‘massive’ test, win on Hyman OT goal

LOS ANGELES — Zach Hyman scored at 10:39 of overtime as the Edmonton Oilers rallied from three goals down, authoring a potentially season-saving victory in a 5-4 decision over the Los Angeles Kings Sunday night.

Hyman’s snap shot from the left faceoff circle was his first goal of the playoffs, ending a dramatic, rollercoaster ride of a Game 4 as the Oilers evened this first-round playoff series at 2-2.

“It was a great breakout pass,” Hyman said about his first playoff game-winning goal. “I looking for a pass and it turned into a Grade A scoring chance. I was able to get it up and over and that was the game. It is probably the most important goal in my career.”

Leon Draisaitl had two goals and an assist for the Oilers, Evan Bouchard had a goal and two assists while Evander Kane forced OT with his third-period goal. Connor McDavid had three assists.

“I think all playoff games are big tests, but this one was massive for our group. I thought we responded well,” said Draisaitl, who leads the league in playoff scoring with nine points. “It is not an easy team to come back against. We came back in waves in the second period and put ourselves back into it.”

Jack Campbell, who came in after Stuart Skinner was pulled after one period, made 27 saves against his former team.

“I’ve constantly touted that we have a good goaltending tandem. We have belief in both of our goaltenders,” Oilers coach Jay Woodcroft said. “That’s not assigning any blame on Stuart for how the first period went. But I felt that our team needed a little bit of a change in momentum, give us a different kind of look. The only debate I had was when I was going to do it.”

Skinner, a rookie who took over for Campbell as the primary starter during the regular season, was indeed off his game in the first period. When the teams took the ice for the second, Campbell led the Oilers out of the tunnel.

“You want to dig deep and get the job done. Everybody in the room did that,” Campbell said. “It feels good to win tonight and move on.”

Viktor Arvidsson had a goal and an assist for the Kings, while Kevin Fiala had two assists in his first game since April 1. Gabriel Vilardi, Anze Kopitar and Matt Roy also scored for the Kings while Joonas Korpisalo stopped 35 shots. Phillip Danault also had two assists.

“We can be frustrated tonight, but tomorrow’s a new day and we’ve got to get ready for Game 5,” Kopitar said. “The first period was obviously really good, and the second period was not good, so there’s no secret to that. We’ll have to correct that going forward.”

Game 5 is Tuesday night in Edmonton, and while Woodcroft appeared like he knew the question was coming, he didn’t announce a decision on his goaltender choice for that game.

“Oh my goodness. We’re not even 15 minutes after the game’s been played,” Woodcroft said. “You gotta let me enjoy it for a little bit, don’t you? We’ll sleep on things and see where we’re at after.”

Los Angeles dominated the first period and raced out to a 3-0 lead to chase Skinner. Edmonton then took control in the second to tie it at 3, including a pair of power-play goals.

It was an even played third period as it went to overtime for the third time in the series.

“We gave up the lead in the second period but we lost it in overtime,” Kings coach Todd McLellan said. “The start for us was tremendous, it was something we haven’t had in the series. It has been a strange series, the team that gets in the lead kind of takes their foot off the gas,”

A lower-body injury sidelined Fiala for the Kings’ last six-regular season contests as well as the first three games of this series. He had played in only three of the final 16 regular-season games after taking a knee-on-knee hit from Colorado’s Andrew Cogliano on March 9.

Fiala made his impact felt quickly with two assists in the first period. Vilardi put in a rebound at 9:25 to open the scoring after Skinner made a pad save on Fiala’s backhand. Fiala also had an assist on Kopitar’s power-play goal with 1:49 left in the period as the Kings scored twice in 84 seconds to extend their lead to 3-0.

Bouchard began the comeback at 4:55 of the second with a slap shot from the point on the power play. Draisaitl then evened it with a pair of goals. His one-timer midway through the period was the Oilers’ first even-strength goal since late in Game 2.

Draisaitl then tied it at 3 with 10.5 seconds remaining in the period with the Oilers’ second power-play goal. This one was a wrist shot that beat Korpisalo on his blocker side.

Roy’s backhand in front of the net at 4:28 of the third put LA back on top 4-3 before Kane forced overtime with 3:02 remaining with a snap shot to the far side that Korpisalo was unable to get with his glove.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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