NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Friday, February 25th (All times eastern)
St. Louis Blues (27-24-9) at Edmonton Oilers (20-33-8), 9 p.m.
(Sports Network) - Suddenly, the Oilers are putting on a show in front of their frustrated home fans.
Edmonton can give itself a chance at getting out of the NHL's basement with a fourth straight home victory this evening in a meeting with the St. Louis Blues at Rexall Place.
The Oilers have won four of their last five, beginning that stretch with three straight home triumphs before a setback in Minnesota on Tuesday. However, Edmonton rebounded the following night at Colorado with a 5-1 victory.
Taylor Hall and Jordan Eberle both had a goal and an assist, while Devan Dubnyk made 38 saves to back an Oilers offense that has scored at least four goals in four victories.
"It's awesome when we have a goaltender that keeps us in it," said Hall. "It keeps us loose and we look forward to scoring for him. When I got that goal it felt good."
Kurtis Foster, Dustin Penner and Sam Gagner also lit the lamp to give the Oilers 48 points on the season, one fewer than the Senators for last in the overall NHL standings. Edmonton kicks off a four-game homestand tonight, while Ottawa visits Buffalo.
Hall had the overtime game-winner when the Oilers host the Blues back on Dec. 4, their fourth victory in the last six at home versus St. Louis. However, the Blues evened the season series with a 5-3 home win on Feb. 4 and have won four of the past five meetings overall.
St. Louis will hope to keep up that recent success over Edmonton as the club is seven points back of playoff spot and is just 7-12-4 since Jan. 1. The Blues lost their third straight game on the heels of three victories in a row, a 3-2 setback in Vancouver last night.
Alex Pietrangelo and David Backes scored in the second period to erase an early deficit, but the Canucks got the game-winner early in the third period. Ty Conklin ended with 24 saves as Jaroslav Halak missed his fifth straight game with a hand injury.
Halak is traveling with the Blues, who began a three-game road trip, but his return date is still unknown.
Pietrangelo scored on the power play to give St. Louis a goal on the man advantage in a season-high seven straight games, but knows his club still has work to do to get back into the playoff race.
"[We need to] limit the turnovers, start putting pucks in, starting playing behind their [defense], start playing stronger in our end," he said following the loss. "[Conklin] stood on his head tonight for us, a couple times he gave us a chance. We just have to keep doing what we're doing and things are going to turn around."
Blues center Andy McDonald has a point in six straight games, totaling four goals and five assists in that span.
St. Louis also lost defenseman Nikita Nikitin to a lower-body injury versus the Canucks before falling to 3-6-2 in its last eight on the road.
02/25 10:55:17 ET