EDMONTON, Alberta - The Edmonton Oilers scored five unanswered goals to defeat the Colorado Avalanche 6-4 victory on Saturday night at Rexall Place.
Magnus Paajarvi, who dressed only because Lennart Petrell was hit by a puck and couldn't play, broke a 4-4 tie when he tapped home a goal with 1:34 left in regulation. Paajarvi had a wide-open net for his game-winner after Ryan Smyth -- back in the lineup after being a healthy scratch on Tuesday -- one-handed a pass across the crease.
Jordan Eberle, whose power-play goal midway through the final period tied the game, added an empty-netter with 1:09 remaining.
Eberle's second goal came on the Oilers' team-record 56th shot as Edmonton became the first team in the NHL this season to win a game after trailing by three goals.
Colorado lost for the fourth time in five games despite a 50-save performance by Semyon Varlamov, who made the second-most saves in a game since the Avalanche moved from Quebec. Patrick Roy made 51 saves on Dec. 10, 1997 at Toronto.
However, the way the game started, the Avs looked like they would run the Oilers out of the building.
The Avalanche needed only 1:22 to grab a quick 1-0 lead. John Mitchell won an offensive-zone draw to Milan Hejduk, who snapped a quick shot that Devan Dubnyk stopped but didn't control. Cody McLeod crashed the crease, found the loose puck next to Dubnyk before defenseman Ryan Whitney did and backhanded it into the net for his second of the season.
Colorado then silenced the sellout crowd of 16,839 with two goals in 24 seconds late in the period.
Matt Duchene raced down the right side, realized that he was coming in on forward Sam Gagner rather than a defenseman, and cut toward the net. But before he could get off a shot, the puck slid off his stick -- and right through Dubnyk's legs at 18:47. It his his sixth tally of the season.
Duchene, the third player picked in the 2009 NHL Draft, then set up a 2-on-1 by tapping the puck to himself in the neutral zone. He carried it into the Edmonton end and set up Jamie McGinn for a wide-open 10-footer that Dubnyk had no chance on.
The Oilers got nothing from their first 22 shots at Varlamov in the first period, but they capitalized on a lucky bounce to get on the board with 3.1 seconds left in the period. Off the faceoff following a boarding penalty to McLeod on an icing call, Taylor Hall's shot from the point hit a Colorado player in front and bounced right to Ales Hemsky, who cut the Avalanche lead to 3-1.
At the start of the second period, Nikolai Khabibulin replaced Dubnyk, who allowed three goals on 12 shots in the first period.
But Duchene's speed was again more than the Oilers could handle. He raced up ice to back off the defense and fed McGinn, whose pass set up Mitchell for a one-timer past Khabibulin at 6:24 of the second period and gave Colorado a 4-1 lead.
It stayed that way until late in the period, when the Oilers scored twice in 59 seconds with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Hemsky picking up the goals.
After the two-game road trip, Colorado will now head back home for a 1 p.m. Presidents Day game on Monday against the Nashville Predators.
|Back to top ↑|