Draisaitl also had an assist, and Stuart Skinner stopped all 25 shots he faced for his first shutout of the season. McDavid recorded his first four-point game of the season after 10 of them in 2022-23 when he was nearly unanimously voted the Hart Trophy winner as NHL MVP.
“You need your top players performing if you’re going to win on a regular basis,” coach Kris Knoblauch said. “You want your third and fourth lines chipping in, helping with the offense. They can do it periodically and help you win games, but in the long run you need your top guys going and they certainly played really well.”
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins also had three points on a goal and two assists and Evander Kane scored, as the Oilers for one afternoon looked like the Stanley Cup contenders they were supposed to be. The victory ended Edmonton’s trying road trip on a positive note and supplied two valuable standings points for what’s still a long climb into contention.
“Obviously one good game for us, but this league’s about obviously doing it over and over and over again,” Draisaitl said. “Have we been at our best all year? Absolutely not. But we have a lot of pride in this room, and tonight was a good step.”
The Capitals’ five-game winning streak came to an end just before they embark on a lengthy Western Conference road trip.
“It’s a very, very immature game — almost something you would expect from a young team that thinks they’re already in California and halfway on the plane before that game even starts,” coach Spencer Carbery said. “You do that against a team that’s playing for their lives and feels like their season’s on the line? Good luck. It’s not even close, and that’s what you just witnessed.”
They also lost winger T.J. Oshie to an apparent head injury from a hit from Mattias Ekholm early in the second period. Carbery said Oshie, who has a history of concussions, won’t travel with the team.
Oshie’s absence is another blow to Washington’s power play, which went 0 for 5 to remain last in the league at 6% — 0 for the last 30 and 3 for 50 overall. The penalty kill that was a perfect 23 of 23 during a recent 10-game stretch allowed three power-play goals.
“We (are) trying,” captain Alex Ovechkin said of the power-play woes. “It’s frustrating for us. But we move on and keep fighting.”
The margin could have been even wider if not for goaltender Charlie Lindgren, who made a handful of big stops among his 30 saves. Lindgren at one point dived to break up a short-handed breakaway by Draisaitl and wound up tripping Ovechkin in the process of preventing another goal.
Washington does not play another home game until Dec. 7, but the team should have its full defense available moving forward. Carbery said Martin Fehervary, who has missed five games after blocking a shot at New Jersey, could return in the Capitals’ next game.
Oilers: Return home to face Anaheim on Sunday.
Capitals: Open their five-game road trip Monday at San Jose.
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