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NHL Preview from The Sports Network

Tuesday, February 24th (All times eastern)

Tampa Bay Lightning (20-28-12) at Edmonton Oilers (29-25-5), 9 p.m.

(Sports Network) - If the Edmonton Oilers are to avoid their longest losing streak since the season's opening month, they will have to best a club they haven't defeated in seven years.

Edmonton will try to avoid a fourth straight overall loss and also snap a four-game skid versus the Tampa Bay Lightning tonight at Rexall Place.

The Oilers have struggled since a three-game winning streak that began with a 7-2 rout of the Montreal Canadiens on February 11. Edmonton has dropped three in a row, losing to a trio of playoff-caliber clubs in San Jose, Dallas and Calgary.

The club did pick up its first point on its current slide when it dropped a 3-2 shootout decision to the Flames on Saturday. Calgary's Matthew Lombardi tied the game late in the third period and Todd Bertuzzi scored the lone goal in the shootout.

Erik Cole and Ales Hemsky lit the lamp and Shawn Horcoff recorded two assists for the Oilers, who are on their first three-game losing streak since December 16-19. They haven't been defeated in four straight since a five-game skid from October 22-30.

Making his 15th straight start, the Oilers' Dwayne Roloson turned away 30 of the 32 shots he faced. He has a 3.33 goals against average over Edmonton's current slide and is 3-2-0 with a tie and 1.96 GAA lifetime versus Tampa Bay.

The Oilers play the second test of a four-game homestand tonight and are 13-11-4 as the host. Edmonton is currently tied for ninth overall in the Western Conference, a point back of eighth-seeded Minnesota.

Edmonton will try to notch its first win over Tampa Bay since March 6, 2002. That victory was the Oilers' sixth straight in the series, but they have lost four straight to the Lightning since, including a 4-3 setback in Tampa on January 22 of last season.

The Lightning, who have won two straight in Edmonton, halted a four-game losing streak on Sunday with a 4-3 victory over the Eastern Conference-leading Boston Bruins.

Vinny Prospal netted the game-winner on the power play late in the third period to lift Tampa. Jeff Halpern registered a goal and an assist, while Adam Hall and Mark Recchi also scored.

Karri Ramo made 40 saves, including 15 over the final 20 minutes, to earn the win. He improved to 2-3-1 with a 4.04 GAA this season and has never faced the Oilers before in his career.

Tampa Bay will try to win back-to-back games tonight for the first time since a three-game win streak from January 19-27.

The Lightning enter the opener of a three-game road trip riding a five-game skid as the visiting club. Just 9-16-4 as the guest this year, Tampa Bay hasn't won on the road since January 12 in Los Angeles.

02/24 11:16:37 ET

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