Wild rally with a big second period, but Oilers’ power play goals are the difference

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EDMONTON, Alberta — The Wild bounced back from their first loss under John Hynes on Friday, rallying to take a couple of leads on the streaking Edmonton Oilers at Rogers Place.

In the end, however, the Wild lost the game and maybe one of their two best defenseman on a reckless hit by Edmonton’s Evander Kane in the third period of the Oilers’ 4-3 victory.

Evan Bouchard scored the Oilers’ first and last goals, and Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl each added one as Edmonton won its sixth straight time. Minnesota has now lost two straight after winning their first four games under new head coach John Hynes.

Matt Boldy continued his resurgence with an active game that netted a goal and an assist, and Joel Eriksson Ek scored his team-leading 13th goal for the Wild, who fell behind 1-0 in the first period before taking two second-period leads on goals by Eriksson Ek and Connor Dewar.

Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 36 of 40 shots.

But the Oilers solved the Wild’s penalty kill, which was rebounding under new leadership — 16 of 17 before Draisaitl scored on a one-timer from the circle to tie the game 3-3 with 1:30 remaining in the second period.

Bouchard scored the winning goal on a power play early in the third period, a slap shot from the point to make it 4-3 just 92 seconds into the final frame. The Wild were on the penalty kill after Ryan Hartman was given 2 minutes for roughing for a retaliatory hit on Kane, who boarded Brodin face-first into the glass behind the Wild net.

Brodin left the game and didn’t return.

The Wild pushed hard down the stretch, but Stuart Skinner, starting his seventh straight game, held strong and finished with 17 stops.

The Wild struggled to get their game going in the last two periods in a 2-0 loss at Vancouver on Thursday and looked, essentially, the same to open Friday night’s game — although Marc-Andre Fleury kept them from getting run out of the building early. Outshot 18-4, the Wild were lucky to go into the first intermission down only 1-0.

The Oilers didn’t get one past Fleury until the Wild were scrambling to defuse an Edmonton rush and Bouchard snapped a hard shot top shelf to break a scoreless tie with just more than 5 minutes left in the period.

But the Wild came out skating in the second period and Boldy tied the game just 15 seconds into the frame, corralling a rebound off an Eriksson Ek deflection and cleaning it up to tie the score 1-1. Just 26 seconds later, Eriksson Ek scored on a one-timer on a pass from Boldy to make it 2-1.

McDavid tied it quickly, skating the puck in by himself and sneaking it into the far corner to make it 2-2 at 1:21.

Dewar then scored on a one-timer of his own at 11:58, his sixth goal of the season — matching a career-high set in 81 games last season — for a 3-2 lead, but Draisaitl tied it with a power play goal at 18:30, a one-timer from the circle that beat a flailing Fleury to send the teams into the second intermission tied 3-3.

The Oilers regained the lead, and the momentum, on Bouchard’s second goal. The Wild pulled Fleury with 1:47 remaining and Hartman hit the post on a shot from the slot, and Jared Spurgeon had an open shot with seconds remaining. But Skinner made the one-goal lead stick.

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