Why stop at one?
Edmonton Oilers forward Mark Arcobello scored the first two goals of his National Hockey League career Tuesday night in Florida, his second coming in overtime as the Oilers beat the host Panthers 4-3.
No. 2 came a little less than two minutes into the extra frame – on a rare OT power play. Arcobello fired a 25-footer past Panthers goalie Jacob Markstrom for the winner with Panthers winger Scottie Upshall stewing in the penalty box for tripping Oilers centre Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.
"I've had my fair share of chances this year,” said Arcobello, who came into Sunshine, Fla., with zero goals on 33 shots. “I'd been squeezing the stick too tight. I was feeling (pressure).”
Upshall, who also potted two goals Tuesday, had sent the game to OT with 58 seconds left in the third period.
Coming into the game with 10 assists through 15 games, Arcobello bagged his first goal on a bad-angle second-period shot that handcuffed the six-foot-four Markstrom.
“On the first goal here, maybe I caught him cheating (off the post),” said Arcobello, who played right-wing on a line with Boyd Gordon and Ryan Jones. “He's a big goalie and I've played against him a lot of times in the American Hockey League. Maybe he crouched down a little far and I put it exactly where I wanted.
"On the winner? You get a little more freedom on a 4-on-3 (power play). I was just trying to hit the net. I knew he'd be moving across the net on the pass. The goal was gravy on a good night."
Gordon won a crucial draw late on the power play and got it back to Ales Hemsky, who teed it up for Arcobello..
"Those face-offs are extremely important, and he's the best on our team,” Oilers head coach Dallas Eakins said of Gordon, who won 13 of 19 faceoffs against the Panthers. “If we lose the draw, it's another 15 seconds and we have to worry about getting the puck into their end.”
While Arcobello got his first, so did defenceman Taylor Fedun, playing his first NHL game — the stuff of dreams, for sure, after shattering his leg two years as he crashed into the boards in a pre-season game.
"It was awesome to just get out there and to ultimately get the first one out of the way early was ... it happened so fast, I didn't really know what to do. I don't think I processed it well," said Fedun, who took a feed from Nugent-Hopkins and tapped it in on Markstrom.
Philip Larsen had the other Oilers goal in the taffy-pull between two clubs that had each lost five straight games.
Until Upshall's last-gasp heroics, the Oilers looked like they'd win easy. But Upshall beat Devan Dubnyk on a high shot after a Hemsky giveaway midway through the third, then off a broken play whirled and ripped one past Dubnyk for his second of the year to get the game to OT.
"I was ready for the last one and he swept it and the puck stayed flat the whole way," said Dubnyk. "I put my glove up and the puck moved a bit and caught me in that spot between my hand and my shoulder. It's a weird goal, but I have to make that save. I have to make those saves especially with how well we played in the game."
Why stop at one?