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Connor McDavid records career-high 6 assists as Oilers beat Red Wings 8-4

Detroit Red Wings' Michael Rasmussen (27) and Edmonton Oilers' Vincent Desharnais (73) vie for the puck during the third period of an NHL hockey game Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2024, in Edmonton, Alberta. (Jason Franson/The Canadian Press via AP)

EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) — Connor McDavid had a career-high six assists to lead Edmonton to an 8-4 win over the Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday night, the Oilers’ eighth straight home victory.

“It’s unbelievable. You can only dream of a game like that,” Oilers forward Dylan Holloway said. “It’s pretty incredible. It’s fun to watch. He deserves it, too. He brings it every day in practice, brings it every game. He had a great game tonight.”

McDavid shrugged off the performance, even though only two players in NHL history have bested the performance by getting seven assists in a game: Wayne Gretzky (three times) and Billy Taylor Sr. (for Detroit in 1947).

“I play with some good players, obviously, and tonight was a good night,” McDavid said.

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins had two goals and Leon Draisaitl, Cody Ceci, Evan Bouchard, Holloway, Zach Hyman and Evander Kane also scored for the Oilers. Edmonton is one victory shy of matching their franchise record of nine home wins, done twice — in 2017 and 2022.

The Oilers head out on a three-game trip before their next home game, on Wednesday, Feb. 21, against Eastern Conference-leading Boston.

Edmonton is 26-5-0 in its last 31 games.

Alex DeBrincat, Joe Veleno, Patrick Kane and David Perron scored for the Red Wings, who have lost two of their last three. Detroit is 10-3-2 since Jan. 1.

“We just lost it in the third, which is really disappointing,” Detroit defender Moritz Seider said. “Up to that point, I thought we had the better chances, we were rolling and in the end, it’s a devastating result with a lot of mistakes we have to correct.

“It’s still a long road trip and hopefully we can flip the switch here pretty quick.”

Edmonton opened the scoring nine minutes into the first period when Draisaitl scored on a snap shot through traffic that beat Detroit’s Ville Husso for his 25th goal of the season. Husso was injured on the play and Alex Lyon entered to take his place.

The Oilers added to their lead a couple of minutes later as Ceci’s long knuckling shot from the blue line caromed off of defender Moritz Seider and past Lyon. It was Ceci’s first of the season and the first time he scored since Oct. 15, 2022, a span of 127 games, which was the longest active scoreless drought in the NHL. McDavid earned the assist and extended his home-game point streak to 19 games.

Detroit battled back with a power-play goal with 4:21 left in the first period. Kane made a long cross-ice pass to DeBrincat, who scored past Oilers starter Stuart Skinner for his 19th.

The Red Wings controlled most of the play for the first half of the second period, but Edmonton was the team that scored midway through the frame. Nugent-Hopkins found Bouchard in front of the net and he beat Lyon on the stick side for his 12th of the season.

Detroit added another power-play goal just over a minute later. Veleno scored off a rebound in a scramble in front of the net for his 10th of the season.

The Red Wings tied the game with 5:30 left in the second. Compher made a backhand pass through to Kane, who scored his eighth.

Edmonton regained the lead 44 seconds into the third as Holloway made a diving lunge to direct home a big rebound from a Bouchard shot for his third goal of the season. McDavid picked up his 600th career assist, making him the fourth-fastest player in NHL history to hit the milestone.

McDavid picked up a fourth assist 3:27 into the third on a goal by Nugent-Hopkins.

With seven minutes remaining in the third, Hyman poked a rebound under Lyon for his team-leading 32nd goal.

Just 46 seconds later, McDavid picked up yet another assist, spinning and sending a backhand pass in front to Kane, who scored his 19th.

Detroit got a goal back with five minutes when Perron tipped a Ben Chiarot shot past Skinner.

McDavid added another assist with 2:11 left, setting up Nugent-Hopkins’ second goal.

“I think his stats sheet says it all: Six assists, plus-six, no power-play time and he was skating,” Oilers head coach Kris Knoblauch said of McDavid, who has 603 assists in 616 games.

“He was one of the few guys who was skating for a full 60 minutes and the plays that he made tonight were pretty phenomenal. If he’s not on top of his game, we’re probably not winning that one.”

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