There was a moment in time when Todd McLellan likely thought he would be the one to be lifting the Edmonton Oilers to playoff success.
But that must seem like a lifetime ago for the former Edmonton — and current Los Angeles Kings — head coach, after seeing his team fall down 3-2 in their playoff series to the Oilers after a dominant 6-3 Game 5 performance at Rogers Place by the home side on Tuesday night.
McLellan’s Kings are now one loss away from their season being over, and it appeared he wasn’t all that happy with how his team played in the loss.
Edmonton went up 2-0 within 12 minutes, and looked to carry a 3-1 lead into the first intermission before Adrian Kempe scored his fourth goal of the series for the Kings to make it 3-2.
But then the wheels fell off for LA, as the Oilers scored the game’s next three goals to put the game out of reach.
“It was overwhelming early in the game, but when we made it 3-2, we had an opportunity to get back in,” McLellan told reporters following Game 5. “The fourth one really hurt us, obviously, and then from there, there was no catching up… That obviously wasn’t good enough, wasn’t close to good enough. It probably doesn’t get you a win in Game 2 of the regular season. So, move on.”
McLellan, who went 123-119-24 with the Oilers in the regular season, made the playoffs once in three and a half seasons as Edmonton’s head coach, losing in Game 7 of the second round against Anaheim in 2017. Overall, he has a 42-45 postseason record across his career with Edmonton and LA as well as seven seasons with the San Jose Sharks.
“We have to bring our best to Game 6 to even have an opportunity at the series. And I’m confident our group can do that,” McLellan added.
Game 6 is set for Saturday in Los Angeles, though puck drop time has yet to be confirmed.
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