The last time the Edmonton Oilers were in Winnipeg, their playoffs hopes were dashed when a triple-overtime goal saw them swept in the first round of the 2021 NHL playoffs.
The stakes weren’t as high Wednesday, with it just being a pre-season game.
However, the Oilers suffered their first loss of the 2021 pre-season, falling 5-1 in Winnipeg to the Jets.
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“It was thin,” Oilers coach Dave Tippett said after the game.
“You’re looking for some improvement in some players, how players play in situations.”
The Jets jumped into the lead 1:31 into the game when Jansen Harkins tapped a loose puck past Oilers goaltender Ilya Konovalov.
Early in the second, the Jets’ Evgeny Svechnikov deflected a point shot to make it 2-0. Austin Poganski had a rebound back in off his face shield to put the Jets up 3-0.
“Funny, we lost big, but I thought both our goaltenders were fine tonight,” Tippett said. “We didn’t protect them very well.”
Harkins went in alone on Skinner and made it 4-0 with just over three minutes to go in the second. Brad Malone came back with a late goal for the Oilers.
Kyle Connor added a third-period marker for the Jets.
Skinner made seven saves on nine shots.
“We didn’t create very much. We didn’t make enough plays,” Tippett said.
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Cody Ceci, the blueliner the Oilers signed to a four-year contact this offseason, said he knows not everyone in pre-season is going to be firing on all cylinders every night.
“There’s other guys that have to get games in, get experience,” he said. “It’s important for everyone to get a chance to play.”
The Oilers will meet the Seattle Kraken in Everett, Wash., on Friday. Catch the game on 630 CHED with the Faceoff Show at 6 p.m. The game will start at 8 p.m.
–With files from 630 CHED’s David Boles
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