McDavid blames hockey gods after Oilers loss to Panthers

The Edmonton Oilers sounded surprisingly content after last night’s 3-0 loss to the Florida Panthers in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final. 

It was obviously not the result they were looking for, and you would think that being unable to score a single goal in the opening game of such a big series would weigh heavily on this team’s confidence, but that wasn’t the case.

The Oilers knew they had put forth a solid 60-minute effort against the Panthers. Edmonton outshot Florida by a 32-18 margin and controlled the pace of play for almost the entire game.

It was a game that the Oilers deserved to win, but a hot Sergei Bobrovsky in the Panther’s cage had other things to say about it. Connor McDavid told reporters after the game that it felt like fate had other plans in this opening game.

“I thought there were lots to like,” McDavid said. “Maybe it was the hockey god’s getting us back for that Game 6 [against Dallas] where we probably didn’t deserve to win.

“Tonight, maybe we deserved one goal, maybe two goals, and we don’t find a way to get them.”

Despite the final score, this was a big step up from their Western Conference clinching victory against the Dallas Stars last weekend. In that game, the Oilers were able to fend off the Stars in a 2-1 win with only ten shots on goal. On the other hand, Dallas had a whopping 34 on Stuart Skinner at the other end of the ice.

The Oilers more than tripled that number in Game 1 but couldn’t beat Bobrovsky. It did feel like perhaps there was some divine presence standing in the way of Edmonton finding the back of the net.

God’s plan or not, McDavid and the rest of the Oilers will need to find a way to solve the Russian goaltender if they want to claw themselves back into this series. They will get another crack at it when Game 2 goes in Florida tomorrow night.