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Why Should Connor McDavid Snapping His Stick Scare the NHL?

Connor McDavid’s snapping of his stick during a matchup against the LA Kings is a warning sign for the new caliber of Edmonton Oilers hockey.

Saturday’s game between the Edmonton Oilers and the Los Angeles Kings was a display of playoff-caliber hockey. And, as can be the case with two teams who don’t like each other, tempers boiled over. Notably, captain Connor McDavid snapped his stick in obvious frustration. It was a rare display of powerful emotions from a player who is typically cool as a cucumber.

Emotions like that can drive a player to put on an absolute clinic; on the contrary, they can also cost a team a game. One has to wonder where this display will take the greatest player in the world. NHL teams should bet on this being a positive for Edmonton.

The Kings are good at getting under the skin of the Oilers. Frankly, McDavid’s snapped stick probably gave LA more motivation to do what they were doing. That kind of emotion is uncharacteristic of the Oilers’ captain and it would make sense if the Kings want him on tilt. Typically, McDavid knows how to handle emotions, yet the Kings found a way to utilize the frustrations and make it harder for McDavid to make plays.

There’s good evidence that this kind of strategy works. Saturday’s Leafs games gave a prime example of emotions being a detriment, with Morgan Rielly’s cross-check on Ridly Greig’s face after an empty netter. Players who suffer from an emotion-fueled game can get sucked into taking undisciplined penalties and making costly mistakes. The team suffers from a player not knowing how to utilize emotions.

Today’s superstars are players who can use emotions to their advantage. Sidney Crosby against the Flyers and Cale Makar during the 2022 playoffs. Emotions are a tool if they can be utilized. McDavid will find a way to use this evil feeling for good.

Why is This Emotion from McDavid So Important for the Oilers?

After an abysmal start to the season, the Oilers were working through some of the darkest days in the McDavid era. In the first six games of the season, he had nine points. Flash forward to the last six games in December, and a frustration-fueled McDavid had 16 points during that stretch.

Oilers Connor McDavid vs Blackhawks

McDavid is a player who can channel emotions into his play to become unstoppable. In 39 career games against the rival Calgary Flames — a team the Oilers truly don’t like — he has 29 goals, 24 assists, and a total of 53 points. Since November 13th, the Oilers are 27-8-0. The NHL saw a side of McDavid that was unknown before. So did his teammates. Using his emotions to push forward helped the Oilers go on the second-longest win streak in NHL history. Pure frustration was a major factor in the historic win streak.

While the Kings threw Connor off his game, they are bound to pay for it. With the next meeting between these two teams on February 26, another playoff-esque game is on the way. Tempers already boiled over, and with a pending grudge from McDavid, the Kings can bet on seeing a completely different team.

The Kings should be worried. They may have opened Pandora’s box. Snapping the stick isn’t just a show of frustration for one game. It’s a warning for the unstoppable force to come.

Next: Lineup Reversal for Oilers Proves Defense Pairing Flip a Total Flop



  1. Pingback: Why Should Connor McDavid Snapping His Stick Scare the NHL? Its Playoff Hockey Fantasy Hockey News – Its Playoff Hockey

  2. Kerry Dunn

    February 12, 2024 at 10:08 pm

    It means “Waaaaa – I’m going to have to whine about the officials in the media again because they aren’t calling penalties when I dive as often as they used to – WAAAAA.”

    Remember who this is. Every time things don’t go his way his either losing his cool or crying in the press about how hard he has it.

    Maybe the league is waking up and not falling for his patented “grab opponents stick, look for ref, turn towards ref so he can see stick, fall down and wait for the whistle” routine.

    Which he normally gets away with because the officials are too scared he’ll whine in the media (again) if they don’t call it.

    I swear, one day he’s going to grab someone’s stick, turn towards the ref, fall down and then lose his cool when he gets a holding the stick and an embellishment call because the other guy let go of his stick as soon as McDavid grabbed it and was at the 40 feet away at the bench when McDavid took his dive.

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