The deciding game in the Oilers' series against the Anaheim Ducks comes a day after a photo was released online, showing McDavid with two adoring fans at the Edmonton International Airport.
There have been upsets, dominance, disappointment, drama, and exciting games to watch in these 2017 NHL Playoffs.
Edmonton wasted little time in Game 6, jumping out to a 5-0 lead in the first period.
Talbot finally relinquished the lead when Ritchie sniped a wrist shot past him in the first four minutes of the third period. The third-year forward has been unstoppable against Anaheim, registering 11 goals and 10 assists in 11 games against the Ducks this campaign.
The Oilers, should they be so fortunate to win Game 7 against the Ducks here Wednesday and keep rolling, would eventually be able to point at a few watershed moments of adversity: a 7-0 loss to San Jose, those $%#@&^%$ goalie interference calls, gagging on a 3-0 lead in Game 5 in Anaheim, and the war of attrition that has taken a toll on their blue line. "We actually started to play better once they scored".
The Ducks ended their ignominious streak after the tense final minutes of a strong defensive performance to back Gibson's best game of the postseason.
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The Western Conference matchup provides some fresh blood for the conference, with the Predators making their first appearance in franchise history and the Ducks advancing for the first time since 2015, where they lost to the Chicago Blackhawks.
Though rest and recovery is always important during an extended playoff run, Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf told reporters that going from one series immediately to another isn't necessarily a bad thing. "I just go out and try to play my best game and try to be the best player I can be", Draisaitl said.
With those kinds of stakes there will be vast pressure, but don't worry yet Oilers fans, the team has impressed two Edmonton area sports psychologists. "But it's a fact that we don't have to talk about it anymore. The guys should be looking around and seeing what an accomplishment we had this year", Oilers forward Patrick Maroon said. Kesler deftly kept the puck alive in front of the net, and Cogliano tapped the puck in past a prone Talbot for his first goal of the playoffs.
"Disappointing, especially it shouldn't have even got to a Game 7 so, you know, it sucks to lose that one", Oilers forward Milan Lucic said.
The time is now for the five-time Pacific Division champion Ducks, 10 years since their 2007 championship.
They showed grit and guile while bouncing back from a blowout loss in Game 6 and yet another early deficit in a seventh game, silencing the echoes of past winner-take-all events.
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The Oilers forced a Game 7 with an emphatic 7-1 victory in Game 6 on Sunday night.
Pittsburgh's veteran netminder came up big in Game Seven, stopping all 29 shots that he faced, in a 2-0 win at Washington. "It's a phenomenal feeling".
Where: Honda Center, Anaheim, Calif. Defensively, the Anaheim Ducks are allowing 2.4 goals per game and are killing 84.7 percent of their opponents power plays. It was the Predators' ninth straight playoff win in Nashville going back to last postseason.
The Oilers obviously have great potential for the future; McDavid and Draisaitl give them ample reason to be optimistic, but it's not a given that a team is going to achieve their Stanley Cup goals, even with great talent. Oscar Klefbom is hopeful of play in game 6.
However, the two goals proved to be enough for Anaheim even though things didn't start in ideal fashion for the victors. Last night, with everything lined up for yet another crushing Game 7 loss, the Ducks.won.
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