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McAvoy scores in OT as Bruins edge Oilers in dramatic overtime win

Boston Bruins' Mason Lohrei (6) reacts as the puck goes in past Edmonton Oilers goalie Stuart Skinner (74) during third period NHL action in Edmonton on Wednesday February 21, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson Boston Bruins' Mason Lohrei (6) reacts as the puck goes in past Edmonton Oilers goalie Stuart Skinner (74) during third period NHL action in Edmonton on Wednesday February 21, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
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EDMONTON -

As much as Edmonton battled back, the Boston Bruins were there for the counterpunch.

Charlie McAvoy scored the overtime winner as the Bruins won their second game in a row, emerging with a thrilling 6-5 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Wednesday.

McAvoy sent a backhand past Oilers goalie Stuart Skinner 3:10 into an overtime which started with an Edmonton power play.

Boston also held 4-1 and 5-4 leads, but got pushed into extra time before delivering the final blow.

I just loved the way we kept forging ahead. We didn’t worry about what happened positively or negatively,” said Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery. 

“I thought we continued to play. Obviously they had a great push by a great team in the third period and it kind of snowballed, but we went right back to work afterwards. When they made it 4-4, the next four minutes I thought we controlled the game and started to push back. We got the (David Pastrnak) goal and they came back, it was great for the fans.”

Morgan Geekie, Brad Marchand, Trent Frederic, Jake DeBrusk and Pastrnak also scored for the Bruins (34-12-11) who had lost four straight before their latest pair of victories and had to dig deep after Edmonton fought back to tie the game twice on Wednesday

“I think that’s an identity of ours,” said Boston goalie Jeremy Swayman. “It was not exactly how we drew it up, but it was really special to get those two points and the way we did it through adversity and their push, I think that’s really something special for our group moving forward.”

Warren Foegele had a pair of goals and Mattias Janmark, Corey Perry and Zach Hyman also scored for the Oilers (33-18-2) who saw their run of consecutive home wins halted at eight — one shy of tying a franchise record.

“You are happy with the way you battled back from down 4-1 to a really good team, to be able to come back twice and earn a point says a lot about our team and how it faces adversity,” Hyman said.

“But at the same time you don’t want to put yourselves in that position. Since we have been back (from the All-Star break) we have put ourselves in that position too often and we have to learn to play consistently throughout the whole game again.”

Boston got off to an early start with a power-play goal coming just 2:34 into the opening period as Geekie picked the top corner with a long shot that eluded Skinner for his 10th of the season.

The Oilers tied the game with 8:20 to play in the first as Connor McDavid tipped a puck off a defender’s stick off the boards to Foegele who drove hard to the net before slipping a backhand past Bruins goalie Jeremy Swayman for his 12th. McDavid’s assist extended his home-game point streak to 20 games.

The Bruins surged back in front just 25 seconds into the second period as Edmonton coughed up the puck and Marchand ended up coming up the side boards and beating Skinner to the short side on a bit of a soft goal. It was Marchand’s 26th goal of the campaign, leaving him two shy of the 400 mark for his career.

Boston took a two-goal lead just four minutes later as Frederic redirected in a Jesper Boqvist shot for his 16th of the season.

The Bruins kept coming with another goal coming with six minutes remaining in the second period as a big rebound on a shot through traffic by David Pastrnak came to DeBrusk, who scored his 13th.

Edmonton responded a minute-and-a-half later when Zach Hyman came out of the corner and spotted Foegele in front, and he swept his second goal of the game past Swayman on the backhand.

The Oilers made it a one-goal game six minutes into the third period as a Cody Ceci point shot trickled through Swayman’s legs and was slammed home by Janmark, just his third of the season.

Edmonton tied the game 1:10 later as Perry continued to make an impact since joining the Oilers tipping a Darnell Nurse shot and then depositing the rebound for his seventh.

Boston regained the lead with 7:19 to play in the third as Evander Kane coughed up a puck at the blue line and it ended up going to Pastrnak, who wristed a shot from the top of the circle into the net for his 36th.

However, Edmonton knotted the game back up again just 42 seconds later as the rebound from a long Mattias Ekholm shot was sent home by Hyman for his team-leading 34th, eventually sending the game to extra time.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 21, 2024.

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