NHL Game Summary - Edmonton at Chicago
(Monday, January 2nd)
Final Score: Edmonton 4, Chicago 3
Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - Ben Eager netted the game-winning goal in the third period as the Edmonton Oilers edged the Chicago Blackhawks, 4-3, at United Center.
Taylor Hall and Ryan Smyth both had a goal and an assist, while Andy Sutton also found the back of the net for the Oilers, who snapped a seven-game road losing streak. Jordan Eberle added a pair of assists and Devan Dubnyk made 39 saves for the victors.
Jonathan Toews, Andrew Brunette and Jimmy Hayes scored, while Cory Crawford stopped 26 shots in defeat for Chicago, which was unable to carry momentum over from a 3-2 win over Detroit on Friday.
Eager's game winner came at the 8:17 mark of the third period when the big forward came through the neutral zone with speed and backhanded one that got past the blocker side of Crawford, putting Edmonton up, 4-2.
Chicago cut it to 4-3 when Hayes wristed one home from the left circle for his first career NHL goal at the 16:11 mark of the final period.
The Blackhawks pulled Crawford with just over a minute to go in regulation and got some quality chances on net, but Dubnyk was able to keep the puck out and preserve the win for his team.
Chicago opened the scoring at 12:54 of the first stanza when Dan Carcillo intercepted the puck in the neutral zone and moved in on the left wing before finding Toews, who wristed one past Dubnyk from the slot.
Edmonton was awarded a five-minute power play at the 7:23 mark of the second period when Carcillo was whistled for a major penalty and a game misconduct after drilling Oilers defenseman Tom Gilbert face-first into the end boards.
While on the power play, Edmonton quickly tied the game, finding the back of the net just 16 seconds after the penalty call.
Edmonton executed the cycle game well in the offensive zone as Hall and Shawn Horcoff played catch and rotated positions on the right wing before Hall fired a shot from the right circle that hit Horcoff and sat in the slot before Smyth pounced on it and jammed it home.
The Oilers struck again with the same power play at the 11 minute mark when Eberle sent a slick cross-ice pass from the left circle to the right circle before Hall fired it past Crawford to give his team a 2-1 edge.
"Whenever you see a hit like that and there's a five minute penalty you want to capitalize on it," said Eager. "We were able to score two goals so it turned out to be a big point in the game but you never like to see teammates go down."
Brunette evened it up again for Chicago just 1:39 later when he deflected a point shot off the stick of Niklas Hjalmarsson through traffic and past Dubnyk.
Edmonton reclaimed the lead at 16:23 of the second frame when Eberle raced down into the right wing corner, spun around and feathered a backhand pass to a wide-open Sutton, who chipped it over the right shoulder of Crawford for a 3-2 lead.
"They scored a couple power-play goals, and a couple funny ones went in on us," Blackhawks head coach Joel Quenneville said. "But we didn't deliver when we needed to."
Earlier in the day, the Blackhawks signed 2011 first-round draft picks Mark McNeil and Phillip Danault to three-year contracts...Edmonton finished 2-of-5 on the power play, while Chicago failed to convert on five power play chances...Chicago will travel to Philadelphia to face the Flyers on Thursday, while Edmonton will head to Buffalo to tangle with the Sabres on Tuesday.
01/03 00:52:10 ET