McDavid ends season with 105 points in Oilers loss to Canucks


EDMONTON — Connor McDavid finished the season with 105 points when the Edmonton Oilers lost 4-1 to the Vancouver Canucks at Rogers Place on Saturday.

McDavid, who had an assist in the loss, scored 33 goals and had 72 assists in 56 games. He is 21 points ahead of teammate Leon Draisaitl for the NHL lead.

Mikko Koskinen made 37 saves for the Oilers (35-19-2), who are the No. 2 seed from the Scotia North Division and will play the Winnipeg Jets in the Stanley Cup First Round beginning in Edmonton on Wednesday.

“That game was a win if nobody got hurt, and nobody got hurt, so we’re taking a win,” Oilers coach Dave Tippett said. “Other than that, it was a game that had no meaning to it from our side, so we got through it fine.”

Video: VAN@EDM: Larsson opens scoring on McDavid one-timer

Matthew Highmore scored twice, and Thatcher Demko made 31 saves for the Canucks (22-28-3), who had lost two straight.

“The guys stuck with it, had a big third [period],” Vancouver coach Travis Green said. “To come on the road and play a lot of games and go .500 (3-3-0), I thought it was a good trip.”

Adam Larsson scored on a one-timer to give Edmonton a 1-0 lead at 12:45 of the first period. 

Bo Horvat tied it 1-1 at 1:27 of the second period, scoring shorthanded off a pass from Tanner Pearson on a 2-on-1. 

The Oilers nearly took the lead at 15:01, but Demko robbed Alex Chiasson on a one-timer when he lifted his outstretched right pad in the air.

“You know that’s going to be a desperation play,” Demko said. “I noticed he was in a good enough spot to raise it, so I was just trying to elevate my leg a little bit to help give myself a chance to get a piece of it. It was kind of sitting on the goal line for a split second and luckily we were able to live to see another day.”

Video: VAN@EDM: Horvat finishes Pearson’s set-up for shorty

Said Tippett, “It was very close, and you couldn’t tell definitively if it was in. [The NHL Situation Room] would have looked at it, it’s not something you challenge. But when you look at it real close, it wasn’t in.” 

Highmore scored on a shot from the left circle to give Vancouver a 2-1 lead at 9:13 of the third period, and Travis Boyd scored 16 seconds later to extend the lead to 3-1.

“I like [Highmore’s] game a lot. He’s tenacious on pucks and he’s good in his own end,” Horvat said. “Obviously, you saw tonight he can put the puck in the net when he wants to. He’s been a great addition to our group, a good guy in the locker room and we’re happy to have him.”

Highmore’s second goal of the period came on a backhand in the slot at 13:27 for the 4-1 final.

“It would have been nice to end on a high note, but we’ve had a great season and now the important stuff starts,” Oilers defenseman Tyson Barrie said. “It was good to get that one out of the way.”

Video: VAN@EDM: Highmore scores second goal of 3rd period

Edmonton defenseman Slater Koekkoek returned to the lineup after missing 35 games with a broken collarbone. He had two shots, one hit and two block in 17:18 of ice time. 

“It felt good,” Koekkoek said. “You don’t know how much you miss that game-day routine, just that nervousness, that anxiousness to play. You wake up this morning and you get those butterflies going and it’s just a real blessing to be out there and back in the mix.”

Video: Highmore nets two in 3rd, Canucks defeat Oilers, 4-1

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