The LA Kings get pushed to the brink of elimination after allowing three first-period goals to the Edmonton Oilers in a 6-3 loss.


First period:

EDM: PP Evander Kane (3), ASST: Darnell Nurse (2), Mattias Ekholm (2)

EDM: Leon Draisaitl (6), ASST: Connor McDavid (5), Mattias Ekholm (3)

LAK: Alex Iafallo (3), ASST: Adrian Kempe (3), Anze Kopitar (5)

EDM: Brett Kulak (1), ASST: Ryan McLeod (1), Warren Foegele (1)

LAK: Adrian Kempe (4), ASST: Carl Grundstrom (1), Drew Doughty (2)

Second period:

EDM: Nick Bjugstad (1), ASST: Cody Ceci (1), Darnell Nurse (3)

EDM: PP Zach Hyman (2), ASST: Evan Bouchard (6), Connor McDavid (6)

Third period: 

EDM: Nick Bjugstad (3), ASST: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (4)

LAK: Quinton Byfield (1), ASST: Gabriel Vilardi (2), Kevin Fiala (3)



LAK: 3

EDM: 6


LAK: 28

EDM: 27


LAK: 0/1

EDM: 2/3

Here are the takeaways from last night’s game-five defeat:

– Draisaitl continues to dominate

Entering the series all the attention was on Connor McDavid and how the Kings will stop him. Through five games it’s been about how will the LA Kings stop Leon Draisaitl or how will they stop both him and McDavid. Through the first four games, Draisaitl had been on the ice for all the Edmonton Oilers’ goals, and he was on the ice for the Oilers’ second goal of the game off a sweet pass from McDavid to register his sixth goal of the series. It’s tough containing one of McDavid or Draisaitl, but when both are clicking it’s nearly impossible to withstand.

+ Kempe quietly having a good series

All the attention has been on McDavid and Draisaitl, and rightfully so because they are two top-five players in the league coming off yet another 100-plus point season. However, Adrian Kempe quietly leads the Kings in points with seven through the first five games. It was a quiet series for Kempe last year as LA’s main focus was shutting down Edmonton’s two best players which meant more focus on the defensive end. While that has been the case in this series again, Kempe has recorded at least one point in every game. His goal and assist last night was his second multi-point game of the series.

– Korpisalo pulled

It was a rough night for Joonas Korpisalo as the 28-year-old netminder. As we saw in game four, Oilers coach Jay Woodcroft yanked Stuart Skinner after the first period for Jack Campbell. The move paid off as it gave the Oilers the spark they needed and Zach Hyman’s overtime winner evened the series. After Nick Bjugstad re-directed Cody Ceci’s shot that squeaked through Korpisalo, Todd McLellan yanked Korpisalo for Pheonix Copley. Unlike game four, the move didn’t seem to wake up the Kings as the Oilers kept their foot on the gas and dominated possession. The first goal Korpisalo may want to have back, but as for the other three, too many defensive breakdowns.

– Byfield giveth and taketh

Byfield wasn’t putting up many points in the first four games, but looked ‘okay’. Game five was far from ‘okay’ for the 2020 second-overall pick. Two goals in the first period were directly off of Byfield either puck-watching or getting beat to the front of the net. Those two plays called for a switch of the lines as Alex Iafallo got moved up to the top line in Byfield’s spot. At the beginning of the second period he got demoted to the fourth line. He ended up with a goal in the third period on the third line with the game out of reach. It will be interesting to see where he slides into the lineup for game six. Or dare I say the press box? We saw what happened with Arthur Kaliyev after game two.

– Possession

Let’s be honest, the Oilers have been the better team this series. Their power play continues to make the Kings pay and five-on-five they have absolutely dominated. The best line for the Kings has been the second line of Trevor Moore, Phillip Danault, and Viktor Arvidsson. As for the Oilers, it seems that all of their lines spend time in the offensive zone. While they only had eight shots on goal in the second period, the Kings seemed to be pinned in their own end for a bit. Faceoffs were a huge part of that as Edmonton won 56% of the faceoffs. The Oilers went right on the attack every time they won the faceoff. Some of the numbers below speak for themselves.

– On the brink

The teams will have three days off until game six. The Kings’ season is on the line and they’ll need to give their best 60-minute effort (something they have yet to do) if they want to play a game seven in Edmonton. It is now or never for them.

UP NEXT: Game six is Saturday, April 29th, and can be seen on Bally Sports West. The time for that game has yet to be determined.

Featured image credit: Canadian Press

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