March 30, 2018 12:48 am
Updated: March 30, 2018 3:14 am

Jacob Markstrom makes 35 saves to deny Edmonton Oilers a victory in Vancouver

Vancouver Canucks goaltender Jacob Markstrom (25), stops Edmonton Oilers left wing Pontus Aberg (46), both of Sweden, during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, B.C., on Thursday March 29, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck


Jacob Markstrom made 35 saves as the Vancouver Canucks edged the Edmonton Oilers 2-1 Thursday night.

“When you fall behind against this team — they check well, they’re real good through the neutral zone and I thought that (Jacob) Markstrom had an exceptional game,” head coach Todd McLellan said. “So not an awful game by us, but a game where the opportunities that presented themselves needed to be finished and they weren’t.”

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Connor McDavid scored a jaw-dropper for the only goal of the first period. McDavid raced Sam Gagner for a loose puck in the Canucks’ end, lifted Gagner’s stick, poked the puck to an open area, then rifled home his 41st of the season.

Gagner made it 1-1 with 4:46 left in the second period when, from a sharp angle, he hacked a rebound past Cam Talbot.

READ MORE: Edmonton Oilers blown out by Columbus Blue Jackets

Derrick Pouliot put the Canucks ahead two minutes into the third. He walked in from the point, maneuvered around Talbot, and roofed his third goal of the season. With six minutes left, Leon Draisaitl hit the post on a power-play chance. Seconds later, Markstrom denied Ty Rattie in tight. With just over two minutes left, Ryan Strome fired a shot off the crossbar.

McDavid has 14 points over the course of a six-game points streak. He leads Tampa Bay’s Nikita Kucherov by six points for the NHL scoring lead.

The Oilers (34-38-6) will visit Calgary Saturday night.

Watch below: Jujhar Khaira has been one of the lone bright spots for the Edmonton Oilers this season. Whenever he plays in Vancouver, it’s a big deal because he’s from Surrey. But as Kevin Karius explains, his return to B.C. was also a big deal for him for other reasons.

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