EDMONTON â€” Connor McDavid needs some time to think about his most recent accomplishment.
McDavid hit the 100-point mark and Jordan Eberle recorded a hat trick as the Oilers downed the Vancouver Canucks 5-2 on Sunday in the final regular-season game on the NHL schedule.
McDavid, who had a pair of assists, ended the season with 30 goals and 70 assists and is the only player this season to reach 100 points. Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby and Chicago’s Patrick Kane finished tied for second in points with 89 apiece.
“It hasn’t sunk in yet,” McDavid said of winning the Art Ross Trophy as the NHL’s leading scorer.
“It was a stressful time down the stretch with (teammate Leon Draisaitl) battling to be in the top 10 (in scoring) and my battling for the Art Ross. We tried to have as much fun with it as we can and we were both successful, and that’s good.”
Edmonton, back in the post-season for the first time since 2005-06, will open the playoffs at home against the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday.
“It will be very exciting,” Draisaitl said. “The crowd is going to be buzzing and loud. Everyone in this city is excited and so are we. We are looking forward to this and I think it is going to be a very fun series.”
Drake Caggiula and Draisaitl also scored for the red-hot Oilers (47-26-9), who have won 12 of their last 14 games and nine in a row on home ice.
Nikolay Goldobin and Nikita Tryamkin replied for the Canucks (30-43-9), who lost their final eight games of the season and missed the playoffs for the second consecutive year.
Canucks forward Bo Horvat said they knew it was going to be a challenge with the Oilers looking to go into playoffs on a roll.
“We knew McDavid was going to be pushing for 100 points and I’m sure the whole team wanted to get it for him,” he said. “I’m sure they wanted to have a good finish to the season, going into the playoffs. They played well tonight.”
Edmonton took the lead on a two-man advantage with 1:14 remaining in the opening period, as an Eberle pass attempt hit defender Luca Sbisa and caromed past Vancouver starter Richard Bachman.
The Canucks tied it up two minutes into the second frame as Goldobin batted a Daniel Sedin pass out of the air and into the Oilers net past goalie Laurent Brossoit.
The Oilers regained the lead a couple of minutes later when Eberle picked off a pass and beat Bachman up high.
Shortly after an Anton Slepyshev goal was disallowed upon review for an off-side call with six minutes left in the second, the Oilers made up for it when McDavid extended his point streak to 14 games by setting up a Caggiula goal on a rush to make it 3-1.
Eberle got his hat-trick goal, and 20th of the season, just 31 seconds into the third period, converting on a beauty spin-around feed from Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.
McDavid hit the 100-point plateau on the Oilers’ fifth goal just over a minute later, setting up Draisaitl’s 29th of the year.
Vancouver got a goal back from Tryamkin to close out the scoring.
Notes: McDavid became the first player to capture the Art Ross Trophy as the NHL’s leading scorer in his second season since Crosby did it in 2006-2007â€¦ The Canucks finished second-last in the NHL, only beating out the Colorado Avalancheâ€¦ Among the pre-playoff scratches for the Oilers were Patrick Maroon, Mark Letestu and Darnell Nurse. Cam Talbot also got a rest in net.
Shane Jones, The Canadian Press