By Mike Harrington
Thursday's late-night special had a spectacular finish as the Edmonton Oilers rallied for a 2-1 overtime win over the struggling Los Angeles Kings after a wild final minute of regulation.
The Oilers tied the game, or so it seemed, with 1:05 left on a goal by Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. But after a sudden discussion by officials, the goal was wiped out due to goaltender interference and fans at Rexall Place erupted. The ice was showered with debris and the game was delayed for about 10 minutes.
When it resumed, the Oilers scored the tying goal (again) as No. 1 overall pick Nail Yakupov swatted a rebound out of mid-air past Jonathan Quick with 4.7 seconds left -- and then took off down the ice for a knee-sliding celebration that reminded everyone of Theo Fleury circa 1991. Sam Gagner won the game with a goal in OT. With young stars all over, Edmonton has been great fun to watch so far.
The Kings got the game's biggest call but they still weren't happy with the officiating. An 0-2-1 start certainly doesn't help their mood.
"Gotta be a record for non five-on-five play. It's gotta be a record,” said coach Darryl Sutter*. “They [the fans] bombed the ice with stuff. It was awesome because they're all [hacked] off. ... I'm sure the league thinks it was a great-officiated game.”
(*Memo to Mr. Sutter: Please send your fine check to 1185 Avenue of the Americas in Manhattan)
So click the files below to compare the videos of the Yakupov/Fleury celebrations. Downright eerie. And I love the Oilers fan banging on the glass and letting out that "whoooo" right after Yakupov's goal.
taggedEdmonton Oilers | LA Kings | NHL