McDavids hat trick helps Oilers top Blackhawks in Game 2, even series

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Connor McDavid scored his first postseason NHL hat trick and the Edmonton Oilers defeated the Chicago Blackhawks 6-3 in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Qualifiers at Rogers Place in Edmonton on Monday.

McDavid scored twice in the first period and once in the third for the Oilers, the No. 5 seed in the Western Conference, who evened the best-of-5 series, 1-1.

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins had three assists, and Mikko Koskinen made 23 saves for the Oilers in his first NHL postseason start.

Game 3 is in Edmonton, the Western Conference hub city, on Wednesday (10:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, NHL.TV, SN, NBCSCH). The series winner advances to the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

McDavid gave the Oilers a 1-0 lead 19 seconds into the first period and made it 2-0 when he skated around two Blackhawks defenders and lifted a shot over Crawford at 4:05.

McDavid completed the hat trick on the power play at 17:10 of the second when his shot deflected off Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith for a 4-3 lead. It was McDavid’s sixth point (four goals, two assists) of the series.

Patrick Kane and Slater Koekkoek each had a goal and an assist, and Corey Crawford allowed six goals on 35 shots for the Blackhawks, the No. 12 seed in the West.

Kane made it 2-1 at 9:06 of the first.

Tyler Ennis scored on a shot through traffic at 1:44 of the second period for a 3-1 lead.

Koekkoek scored from the right circle to make it 3-2 at 4:22, and Olli Maatta tied it 3-3 at 15:13.

James Neal scored gave the Oilers a 5-3 lead at 7:25 of the third, and Alex Chiasson made it 6-3 40 seconds later at 8:05.

Blackhawks forward Drake Caggiula did not play after he was suspended for one game for an illegal check to the head against Ennis in Game 1.

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