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.
“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.
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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