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Connor McDavid, Oilers beat Golden Knights to even NHL playoff series

Star center Connor McDavid (L) totaled two assists in the Edmonton Oilers' playoff win over the top-seeded Vegas Golden Knights on Wednesday in Edmonton. File Photo by Archie Carpenter/UPI
1 of 5 | Star center Connor McDavid (L) totaled two assists in the Edmonton Oilers' playoff win over the top-seeded Vegas Golden Knights on Wednesday in Edmonton. File Photo by Archie Carpenter/UPI | License Photo

May 11 (UPI) -- Ryan Nugent-Hopkins tallied a goal and an assist and Connor McDavid logged two assists to lead the Edmonton Oilers to a win over the top-seeded Vegas Golden Knights, tying the Western Conference semifinals series at 2-2.

The No. 2 Oilers scored four unanswered goals and dominated from puck drop to the final seconds of the 4-1 win Wednesday at Rogers Place in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Game 5 will be Friday in Las Vegas.

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"Obviously, it was a great response, but we need to replicate that in Game 5," Nugent-Hopkins told reporters.

Defensemen Evan Bouchard and Mattias Ekholm and forward Nick Bjugstad scored the other goals for the Oilers.

Bjugstad started the scoring when he lit the lamp 6:46 into the game. Bouchard doubled the lead less than a minute later, beating Golden Knights goalie Adin Hill off a power play. Ekholm pushed the advantage to three goals with 6:40 remaining in the first period.

McDavid and defenseman Darnell Nurse assisted Nugent-Hopkins for a 4-0 Oilers lead 14:45 into the second period. Golden Knights defenseman Shea Theodore and forward William Carrier assisted forward Nicolas Roy for the final goal of the night 5:58 into the third period.

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Oilers net minder Stuart Skinner totaled 25 saves in the win. Hill made 29 stops on 33 shots.

The Golden Knights will host the Oilers in Game 5 at 10 p.m. Friday in Las Vegas. The winner of the series will meet the No. 2 Dallas Stars or wild card Seattle Kraken in the Western Conference finals. That series is tied 2-2.

In Wednesday's first game, William Nylander and Mitch Marner scored to spark a Toronto Maple Leafs 2-1 victory over the Floridan Panthers in Sunrise, Fla. The Maple Leafs, who staved off elimination, trail 3-1 in that Eastern Conference semifinals series.

Marner also logged an assist in the win Wednesday at FLA Live Arena. The No. 2 Maple Leafs will host the wild card Panthers in Game 5 at 7 p.m. EDT Friday at Scotiabank Arena.

"It was a complete effort," Marner told reporters. "We wanted to take it shift by shift for a full 60 [minutes]. I thought we did a great job of that."

The winner of the Panthers-Maple Leafs series will play the top-seeded Carolina Hurricanes or No. 2 New Jersey Devils in the Eastern Conference finals. The Hurricanes lead that series 3-1.

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The Stars will host the Kraken in Game 5 at 9:30 p.m. Thursday in Dallas. The Hurricanes and Devils will start Thursday's NHL playoffs slate at 7 p.m. in Raleigh, N.C.

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