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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Thursday, February 26th (All times eastern)

Columbus Blue Jackets (30-25-6) at Edmonton Oilers (30-25-5), 9 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The Columbus Blue Jackets and Edmonton Oilers will wrap their season series in tonight's battle between the two clubs at Rexall Place.

Columbus drew first blood in this four-game series, notching a 5-4 home win on November 5. However, the Blue Jackets dropped a 7-2 test at home versus the Oilers two weeks later and were then handed a 4-3 defeat in Edmonton on January 20.

The Oilers have had success versus the Blue Jackets since Columbus entered the league, winning four of five and seven of the last nine meetings. Edmonton is 21-7 with three ties all-time versus Columbus and has won 12 of the 15 all- time meetings in Edmonton.

The Blue Jackets, who have lost four straight at Rexall Place, have followed up a four-game winning streak by going 2-2-1 over their last five games. They were last in action on Tuesday when they were handed a 4-1 setback by the Calgary Flames.

R.J. Umberger scored the only goal for Columbus, his fifth in his last six games. Umberger's goal was his career-high 21st of the season, passing the 20 he scored as a rookie with the Philadelphia Flyers in 2005-06.

Steve Mason allowed three goals on 27 shots in the losing effort, which came in the opener of a three-game road trip that ends in Vancouver on Sunday. Columbus has dropped four of its last six as the guest and is 11-15-4 away from Ohio this year.

With 66 points, the Blue Jackets are sixth overall in the Western Conference, but own just a one-point lead over four teams, including the Oilers. Edmonton stayed in the playoff hunt with Tuesday's 5-3 win over Tampa Bay.

Sheldon Souray tallied twice in helping the Oilers to their first win over the Lightning in seven years. Erik Cole, Jason Strudwick and Andrew Cogliano also scored for the Oilers, who last defeated the Lightning on March 6, 2002.

Dwayne Roloson made 26 saves for Edmonton, which snapped a three-game losing streak and improved to 18-0-1 when leading after two periods.

Edmonton is 1-0-1 on a four-game homestand that ends with Saturday's visit by Minnesota. The Oilers are 14-11-4 overall at home this season.

02/26 10:50:03 ET


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