Oilers captain Connor McDavid says his frustration level is really, really high as Edmonton was eliminated from playoff contention on Monday night.
“It’s frustrating,” McDavid said after a 3-1 loss to the Vegas Golden Knights. “We want to play in the playoffs as a team. I personally want to play in the playoffs. I’m not happy about it. It’s going to be a long summer.”
This season will mark the 12th time in the last 13 campaigns the Oilers will miss the playoffs, and the third time in McDavid’s four seasons.
McDavid can hardly be blamed for the team’s struggles as he’s in the middle of his third 100-point season and is one goal away from a new career high. With three games to go this season, he has 41 goals and 115 points.
Secondary scoring has been harder to come by for Edmonton. McDavid, Leon Draisaitl and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins are the only three players on the team who have eclipsed 40 points, and only five players have more than 10 goals.
“It sucks obviously, we were just not good enough all year,” McDavid said. “We let streaks drag on, we let times when we couldn’t find ways to get wins drag on. You have to find a way to stop the bleeding quick. It’s a slim margin of error in this league.”
After a slow start to the season saw them go 10-10-1, the team fired head coach Todd McLellan on Nov. 20. And when thing didn’t change, GM Peter Chiarelli was shown the door just before the all-star game.
When asked to reflect on the season, McDavid admitted the personnel change has been difficult on both him and the team.
“It’s been an insane season. Coaching change, GM change. Good times and bad times. It’s been a rollercoaster,” he said. “It’s been emotionally challenging. It’s been hard mentally to keep on going. We were always kind of right there.
“We were close and then we’d drift away, that’s the way it goes.”