The Oilers scored four goals in the first 7:53 of the first period, including a record-setting hat trick by Taylor Hall, while Devan Dubnyk finished the night with 23 saves, in a dominant 4-0 win over the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday night at Rexall Place. Hall's hat trick was supplemented by two-point games from Ladislav Smid and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, as the Oilers improved to 14-13-7 and moved just one point back of a playoff spot.
Take a closer look at the game as we go Under The Scope:
THE TURNING POINT
Jordan Eberle finds a streaking Taylor Hall down the right wing and the Oilers leading scorer sends a rocket wrist shot top shelf on Cory Schneider to give the home side a 1-0 lead just 16 seconds into the opening frame. It was all over from there as Edmonton scored three more goals before the midway point in the period and shut the door on defence.
PLAY OF THE GAME
The Oilers could have scored by a much greater margin than 4-0 if it wasn't for the play of Roberto Luongo in the third period. The Canucks netminder, who replaced Cory Schneider 2:05 into the game, made several dazzling saves in the third, the best one coming on what would have been Taylor Hall's fourth goal, as he leapt across the crease to make a glove save.
Taylor Hall scored his ninth, 10th and 11th goals of the season in the opening 7:53 of the game to pace the Oilers to the massive Northwest Division rivalry win. Hall also led the team with five shots on goal and leads the Oilers in scoring this season with 34 points in 31 games.
THE UNSUNG HERO
Devan Dubnyk's sterling performance was over-shadowed by the Oilers offensive outburst to start the game. The netminder posted his second shutout of the season with 23 saves, including a number of stops of the highlight-reel variety.
STAT OF THE DAY
Taylor Hall's three goals in the first 7:53 of the first period set a new Oilers record for the fastest hat trick to start a game. The Great One, Wayne Gretzky, tallied three goals in the opening 12:38 in a game versus the Quebec Nordiques in 1986.
THEY SAID IT
"We were almost out of it three games ago and now we're right back at the line. All we can think about now is Calgary."
– Oilers Head Coach Ralph Krueger on the playoff race and staying focused on Monday's Battle of Alberta game
400 – Career games played by Sam Gagner
125 – Seconds Cory Schneider lasted between the Canucks pipes before getting replaced by Roberto Luongo
4 – Blocked shots by Nick Schultz as the Oilers doubled the Canucks in that category 16-86
7 – Faceoff percentage for Shawn Horcoff15 – Canucks players with a -1 rating on Saturday
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