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Draisaitl’s late goal lifts Oilers over Blackhawks 6-5


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CHICAGO (AP) — Leon Draisaitl scored the tiebreaking goal with 37.6 seconds left and had two assists to lead the Edmonton Oilers past the Chicago Blackhawks 6-5 on Thursday night for their third straight win.

Connor McDavid scored three goals and added an assist in his 12th career hat trick and second this season.

Draisaitl lifted a shot from the right side of the net with goalie Alex Stalock down to settle a wild, penalty-filled contest and snap Chicago’s four-game winning streak.

It was the perfect way for Draisaitl to celebrate his 27th birthday.

“Not the way you draw it up, but a big two points,” said Draisaitl, whose game-winner was his fourth goal this season after scoring 55 last year. “I’ll just leave it at that.”

Patrick Kane scored on a rebound with 3:11 remaining to tie it at 5 after McDavid put Edmonton ahead 5-4 at 10:16 of the third period to complete his hat trick. McDavid beat defenseman Jake McCabe in the slot and danced in to score Edmonton’s third power-play goal of the night.

“It was a wild one, for sure,” McDavid said. “Lots of ups and downs. It was fun, a lot of emotions. Lots to build on and get better on.”

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins had a goal and two assists, and Zach Hyman also scored for Edmonton. Nugent-Hopkins and Hyman each scored in their third straight game as Edmonton (5-3-0) won for the fourth time in five.

The speedy, flashy McDavid dominated in a freewheeling game, upping his totals to eight goals and seven assists in eight games this season. He also had three goals and an assist in Edmonton’s season-opening win over Vancouver.

“Some nights you have your stuff and this was one of those nights,” McDavid said. “I felt pretty good all night, made some things happen. A lot of guys stepped up.”

Max Domi had a goal and two assists for the Blackhawks. Andreas Athanasiou, Reese Johnson and Jonathan Toews also scored for Chicago (4-3-0). Kane added two assists as Chicago lost at home for the first time this season after three straight wins.

First-year Chicago coach Luke Richardson was impressed with his rebuilding team’s ability to skate with and bounce back against the skilled Oilers. But at times, he thought his players gave Edmonton’s stars too much time, space and “respect.”

“We worked hard and we were in a spirited, physical game,” Richardson said. “Physically we hung with them, we skated with them.

“They had that killer instinct at the end and we’ve got to learn to have that, whether that be protecting the lead, or trying to get ourselves to overtime to get a point.”

Kane put the Blackhawks in position for at least a point, but Draisaitl foiled it.

“It seems like that’s his spot,” Kane said. “When he gets himself open he gets a lot of shots over there and buries them a lot, too.”

Jack Campbell stopped 31 shots. Stalock made 32 saves in his third straight start with Petr Mrazek sidelined.

Hyman opened the scoring at 10:29 of the first, ripping a one-timer off Stalock’s right pad from the left circle.

Athanasiou tied it at 1 with 6:40 left in the period, completing a breakaway set up by Domi’s stretch pass. Athanasiou got his 200th career point when he tucked a backhand shot under Campbell.

Johnson put Chicago ahead 2-1 just 2:18 later. McDavid tied it 2-all 18 seconds into the second on a rising shot from the left circle that sailed into the upper right corner of the net.

Toews replied with a power-play tip-in of Domi’s feed 1:15 later to put Chicago back in front, 3-2.

McDavid tied it at 3 with a 4-on-3 power-play goal at 8:28. His shot from the left side struck Stalock’s mask, then flipped over the goalie into the net.

An apparent goal by Evander Kane with 4:07 left in the second was disallowed with no clear explanation from referees Chris Rooney and Jon McIsaac after Kane tussled in front of the net.

The Oilers were assessed a delay of game penalty for an unsuccessful goal challenge, then Kane drew an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty 22 seconds later.

Domi converted on the power play with 3:14 left in the period, firing in a one-timer from the top of the left circle to put Chicago ahead 4-3. Nugent-Hopkins’ power-play goal 24 seconds into the third tied it.

NOTES: The Blackhawks placed Tyler Johnson (right ankle) on injured reserve retroactive to Oct 25. He was hurt in a collision with Florida C Aleksander Barkov in Chicago’s 4-2 win on Tuesday. … Oilers C Dylan Holloway (upper-body injury) returned after missing four games.


Oilers: At Calgary on Saturday.

Blackhawks: At Buffalo on Saturday.


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Canada under pressure to produce more food, protect agricultural land: report

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Canada’s agricultural land is under increasing pressure to produce more food as demand grows domestically and internationally, while the industry grapples with limited resources and environmental constraints, a new report found. 

“We need to grow more food on less land and in a volatile climate,” said Tyler McCann, managing director of the Canadian Agri-Food Policy Institute.

The report by the institute released Thursday looks at the pressures on Canada’s agricultural land to produce more food while also mitigating and adapting to the effects of climate change, said McCann. 

Despite Canada being a big country, it doesn’t have as much agricultural land as people might think, said McCann, with the report noting that agricultural land makes up only around seven per cent of the country. 

Because of that, we can’t take what we do have for granted, he said. “We need to be really thoughtful about how we are using our agricultural land.” 

In 2020, Canada was the eighth largest country in terms of cropland area, the report said, with that cropland decreasing by seven per cent over the previous two decades. 

Canada is a major producer and net exporter of agriculture and agri-food products, the report said, exporting $91 billion in products in 2022, and one of the top 10 exporters of wheat, canola, pulses, pork and beef. 

In the coming years, Canada will face increased demand from countries whose populations are growing, the report said. 

“With population growth on one side and climate change on the other, Canada will be amongst an increasingly smaller number of countries that is a net exporter,” said McCann, noting that Canada’s own population is growing, and farmland also needs to be protected against urban sprawl. 

The wildfires clouding Canadian skies this week are a “vivid reminder” of the pressure that extreme weather and the changing climate are putting on the agricultural sector, said McCann. 

“We need to clearly mitigate … agriculture’s impact on climate change. But we also need to make sure agriculture is adapting to climate change’s impacts,” he said. 

One of the ways the world has responded to demand for increased agricultural production over time is to create more agricultural land, in some cases by cutting down forests, said McCann. But that’s not a viable option for Canada, which doesn’t have a lot of land that can be sustainably converted into farmland — and even if it could, doing so could have a variety of adverse environmental effects, he said. 

Some of the practices used to reduce emissions and sequester carbon in agriculture can also improve production output on existing farmland, the report found, such as precision agriculture and no-till practices.

However, intensifying the production of current agricultural land also comes with potential environmental downsides, the report said.

For example, McCann said fertilizer is an important part of sustainable agriculture, but there’s a balance to be struck because excessive use of fertilizer can quickly turn food production unsustainable. 

“We need to be a lot more thoughtful about the inputs that we’re using,” he said, adding the same can be said about the use of technology in agriculture and the policies and programs put in place to encourage sustainable intensification of Canadian agriculture. 

The report recommends that Canada adopt policies that provide financial incentives and technical assistance to farmers and develop regulatory frameworks promoting sustainable land use, as well as promoting education and awareness campaigns, so that the country can “ensure the long-term sustainability of its agricultural sector while protecting the environment.”  

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 8, 2023.

Rosa Saba, The Canadian Press

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Lawyer tells Alberta’s highest court review board biased in de Grood’s case

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