Michael Grabner scored twice as the New York Rangers downed the Edmonton Oilers 3-1 Sunday night at Rogers Place.
For the fifth time in the last seven games, the Oilers allowed a goal in the first two minutes of the game, as Grabner gave the Rangers a 1-0 lead just 1:20 into the first period.
Dan Girardi made it 2-0 with a deflection in front of Cam Talbot with 6:42 left in the first. The Oilers replied on an Andrej Sekera goal with 1:15 to go in the first. Overall, the Oilers were outplayed in the first period and were fortunate to escape down only a goal.
The last two periods were played almost exclusively in the Rangers end, but the Oilers couldn’t beat Antti Raanta, who finished with 38 saves. Grabner scored his second of the game on a breakaway in the second period, taking advantage of a giveaway by Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.
Cam Talbot took the loss, making 24 saves. Connor McDavid picked up an assist, giving him six helpers in the last four games.
Head coach Todd McLellan says they need to do more with the chances they get on net.
“We’re generating pressure towards the net but there’s not a lot of secondary chances. Tip-ins, defections seem to be going wide rather than between the pads. Just not enough secondary scramble type stuff. Even on the end when we’re poking away, but there’s not enough of that and the goaltender’s probably a little too comfortable so we’re going to have to work on that.”
The Oilers fall to 9-6-1 on the season. They’ve lost three in a row. They open a three-game road trip Tuesday in Anaheim. (jrw)