Nugent-Hopkins, Draisaitl lift Oilers to win over Kings

Reuters

Thu, Mar 28, 2019 - Page 16

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins posted a first-period hat-trick and Leon Draisaitl collected three goals in a four-point night as the Edmonton Oilers scored five times in the opening frame en route to an 8-4 victory over the Los Angeles Kings on Tuesday night to keep their slim playoff hopes alive.

Goalie Mikko Koskinen made 34 saves for Edmonton, who are five points behind the Colorado Avalanche for the second wild-card spot in the Western Conference with six games remaining.

After Alex Iafallo opened the scoring for the visitors at 2 minutes, 10 seconds, Nugent-Hopkins and Edmonton went gangbusters before the first intermission.

His first of the night came just 82 seconds after the opening tally and Draisaitl hit the score sheet 64 seconds later, going coast to coast with the puck before snapping home a shot from the slot.

Nugent-Hopkins found the mark a second time at 14 minutes, 18 seconds with another long puck that beat Kings goalie Jonathan Quick and then completed the hat-trick with 11.9 seconds remaining in the period for his career-best 28th goal of the season.

Draisaitl rounded out the scoring with 91 seconds remaining for his first career three-goal game, which gives him 46 on the season.

It was the first time that two Oilers collected hat-tricks in a game since Dec. 20, 1985, when Jari Kurri and Paul Coffey accomplished the feat.

In other games on Tuesday, the Washington Capitals crushed the Carolina Hurricanes 4-1, the Columbus Blue Jackets shut out the New York Islanders 4-0 and the Montreal Canadiens demolished the Florida Panthers 6-1.

Elsewhere, the Ottawa Senators shut out the Buffalo Sabres 4-0, the Anaheim Ducks edged the Vancouver Canucks 5-4 and the Arizona Coyotes outlasted the Chicago Blackhawks 1-0.

Additional reporting by staff writer