Led by the young, dynamic line of Eberle, Nugent-Hopkins, and Hall, the Oilers came out of thursdays match by a final score of 4-1.
Eberle opened up the scoring with a chip shot in traffic 15:57 into the first period. Less than 3 minutes later, Smyth scored his first goal in almost a month to give the Oilers a 2-0 lead. Near the end of the 1st period Hall was tripped on a breakaway and awarded a penalty shot but was unsuccessful.
Early in the second period, rookie Lennart Petrell notched his 3rd goal of the year on a beautiful shorthanded slapshot over the arm of Backstrom. The Oilers didn’t let up and were rewarded just over a minute later with another goal by past World Junior All-Star Jordan Eberle. At this point in the game the Oilers had the same amount of goals as the Wild had shots.
Minnesota would start the 3rd on the power play but would’t be able to capitalize on Sam Gagner’s 4 minute high-sticking penalty. However, during the last seconds of the penalty kill Petrell would run Marek Zidlicky into the boards and receive a 5 minute major and a game misconduct. Minnesota managed to get many shots on the power play but couldn’t find the back of the net.
Khabibulin stopped 30 of the 31 shots and matched his total win number of 11 from last season. The Oilers now sit at a record of 15-16-3 and will look to jump over the .500 mark on their upcoming road trip.
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