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Oilers blow out Canucks to force Game 7

Codie McLachlan / Getty Images Sport / Getty

The Edmonton Oilers and Vancouver Canucks are going the distance.

The Oilers handily defeated the Canucks 5-1 in Game 6 on Saturday to force a winner-take-all contest Monday night in Vancouver.

The winner of Game 7 will book a ticket to the Western Conference Final against the Dallas Stars.

It was a dominating performance by the Oilers, who outshot the Canucks 27-15.

"All we did is give ourselves a chance to play one more game," Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse said. "We gotta bring the same mindset to Vancouver on Monday."

Edmonton's star players came through when the team needed them most. Connor McDavid, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, and Evan Bouchard each put forth three-point efforts. Leon Draisaitl picked up a pair of assists, while Zach Hyman potted his 10th goal of the postseason.

Stuart Skinner wasn't tested often in his return to the crease but was stellar when called upon, stopping 14 of 15 shots.

"Not many shots, but the ones they did get I thought were dangerous, and he did a great job stepping up," McDavid said postgame, per Sportsnet.

Vancouver tallied eight high-danger scoring chances compared to Edmonton's nine, according to Natural Stat Trick.

Skinner took a back seat to Calvin Pickard for Games 4 and 5 after struggling to the tune of a .793 save percentage in the first three contests of the series. McDavid said the team's belief in Skinner never wavered.

"We never had a doubt, honestly," McDavid said. "He's a battler. He's always been a battler. Our team always responds, and he's no different."

Arturs Silovs, meanwhile, struggled in the opposite crease, as he was on the hook for all five goals. He projects to get the call in Game 7, too, as Canucks head coach Rick Tocchet said injured netminder Thatcher Demko won't be able to return Monday. Vancouver's other option between the pipes is veteran Casey DeSmith, who hasn't played since Game 3 of Round 1.

Tocchet believes in his group's ability to turn the page after a rough performance.

"We are a good bounce-back team," Tocchet said. "That's the way I look at it. Our job right now is we gotta flush this game. Obviously some guys know they have to play better. You have 48 hours to get your energy back. It's Game 7, people would kill to be in this situation right now."

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