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Edmonton Oilers beat San Jose Sharks, advance to 2nd round of NHL playoffs

Edmonton Oilers left wing Anton Slepyshev (42) celebrates after scoring a goal with teammate Benoit Pouliot (67) during the second period against the San Jose Sharks in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar). AP Photo/Tony Avelar

SAN JOSE, Calif. – Two breakaway goals less than a minute apart Saturday night proved to be the difference as the Edmonton Oilers defeated the San Jose Sharks 3-1 and advanced to the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs.

The goals by forwards Leon Draisaitl and Anton Slepyshev came 56 seconds apart and Oilers goalie Cam Talbot made 26 saves for the Game 6 victory. Veteran Patrick Marleau scored the lone goal for San Jose while Oilers star Connor McDavid hit the empty net with less than a second remaining.

The Oilers had qualified for the playoffs for the first time since 2006 while the Sharks were the defending Western Conference champions after reaching the Stanley Cup final for the first time a year ago.

The first three minutes of the second period were a microcosm of the game, with the Oilers able to take advantage of their opportunities and the Sharks unable to capitalize on any of their own.

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San Jose Sharks defenseman Brent Burns (88) battles for a puck against Edmonton Oilers right wing Zack Kassian (44) during the second period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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Edmonton Oilers left wing Anton Slepyshev (42) celebrates after scoring a goal with teammate Benoit Pouliot (67) during the second period against the San Jose Sharks in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar). AP Photo/Tony Avelar
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Edmonton Oilers center Leon Draisaitl (29) celebrates with teammate Drake Caggiula (36) after scoring a goal against the San Jose Sharks during the second period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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Edmonton Oilers center Leon Draisaitl (29) scores a goal past San Jose Sharks goalie Martin Jones (31) during the second period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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Edmonton Oilers center Leon Draisaitl (29) celebrates with teammate Drake Caggiula (36) after scoring a goal against the San Jose Sharks during the second period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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San Jose Sharks goalie Martin Jones (31) blocks a goal-attempt by Edmonton Oilers center Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (93) during the first period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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Edmonton Oilers goalie Cam Talbot (33) blocks a shot by San Jose Sharks right wing Joonas Donskoi (27) during the first period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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San Jose Sharks left wing Mikkel Boedker (89) battles for the puck against Edmonton Oilers defenseman Matthew Benning (83) during the first period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar). AP Photo/Tony Avelar
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San Jose Sharks center Tomas Hertl (48) moves the puck past Edmonton Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse (25) during the first period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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San Jose Sharks right wing Marcus Sorensen (20) trips as he chases the puck against Edmonton Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse (25) during the first period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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Edmonton Oilers goalie Cam Talbot (33) and teammate defenseman Kris Russell (4) block a shot at goal by San Jose Sharks center Logan Couture (39) during the second period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. The Oilers won 3-1. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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Edmonton Oilers left wing Milan Lucic (27) moves the puck past San Jose Sharks defenseman Brenden Dillon (4) during the second period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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Edmonton Oilers goalie Cam Talbot (33) blocks a goal attempt by San Jose Sharks center Patrick Marleau (12) during the second period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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San Jose Sharks goalie Martin Jones (31) is beaten for a goal on a shot from Edmonton Oilers left wing Anton Slepyshev (42) during the second period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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Edmonton Oilers defenseman Andrej Sekera (2) celebrates with Edmonton Oilers goalie Cam Talbot (33) after a 3-1 victory against the San Jose Sharks in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. Edmonton Oilers wins the series 4-2. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid (97) celebrates after scoring an empty net goal with teammate Leon Draisaitl (29) during the third period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. The Oilers won 3-1. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)o97/. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)o97/
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Edmonton Oilers goalie Cam Talbot (33) looks back as a puck hits the post on a shot at goal by a San Jose Sharks during the third period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. The Oilers won 3-1. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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San Jose Sharks center Patrick Marleau (12) celebrates after scoring a goal against the Edmonton Oilers during the third period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. The Oilers won 3-1. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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Edmonton Oilers goalie Cam Talbot (33) blocks a shot against San Jose Sharks right wing Joonas Donskoi (27) as defenseman Andrej Sekera (2) looks on during the third period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. The Oilers won 3-1. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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San Jose Sharks right wing Melker Karlsson (68) and Edmonton Oilers center Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (93) battle for the puck in front of goalie Cam Talbot (33) during the third period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. The Oilers won 3-1. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar).
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Edmonton Oilers head coach Todd McLellan, center, talks with his players during a time-out against the San Jose Sharks in the third period in Game 6 of a first-round NHL hockey playoff series Saturday, April 22, 2017, in San Jose, Calif. The Oilers won 3-1. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar). AP Photo/Tony Avelar

The sequence began when Oilers defenceman Oscar Klefbom blocked a shot by Sharks defenceman Justin Braun and the puck was steered to Draisaitl breaking down ice behind the San Jose defence. His 15-foot wrist shot beat Sharks goalie Martin Jones and the Oilers took a 1-0 lead at the 54-second mark.

READ MORE: Edmonton Oilers fans say lack of sleep during playoffs is worth it

On the next shift, Sharks forward Chris Tierney’s pass to Paul Martin at the blue line was fumbled long enough for Slepyshev to swoop in and carry the puck into the San Jose zone where he made it 2-0 at 1:50.

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The Sharks immediately bounced back with a pair of scoring chances — the first a 2-on-1 break with Logan Couture and Marcus Sorensen, the second when Marleau drove the net after taking a pass from Joe Thornton — but came away empty handed.

READ MORE: Edmonton and Rogers Place making tweaks to adjust to Oilers’ playoff fever

Marleau did get the puck past Talbot at 12:12 of the third period after taking a cross-crease feed from Couture to make it a 2-1 game. San Jose nearly tied the game on a power play about four minutes later, but a shot by Joe Pavelski hit both the crossbar and a post.

The second-round series between the Oilers and Anaheim Ducks will open at the Honda Center. Edmonton won three of the five games between the two teams in the regular season, the most recent a 3-2 overtime win on April 1.

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