"We played well all game but allowed three goals in the third period," said Nilsson. "But we came back and got to the shootout where we usually win."
Garon was once again shootout perfection, stopping all three Red Wings shooters - Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg and Jiri Hudler in order.
"I knows guys are going to score for me. It was only the third shot we scored but I knew it was going to come," stated Garon. "I just wanted to make the saves and give ourselves a chance to win the game."
Garon set the stage for Nilsson, who cooly backhanded the puck glove side on Red Wings starting goaltender Chris Osgood.
"You can't think too much. You've got to decide your move beforehand and don't think about it," Nilsson remarked.
Edmonton let a 2-0 lead slip away in this one, but ultimately recovered for the two points.
Geoff Sanderson took the game's first penalty a couple minutes into the game, giving Detroit the power play.
With 12 seconds left in Sanderson's minor, a slashing penalty was called on Matt Greene.
After killing off both penalties, the Oilers went on the attack. Kyle Brodziak made a great play to knock the puck down, then turned and fed the puck to Ales Hemsky on the open wing. Red Wings goaltender Chris Osgood did a good job coming across to make the pad save.
Sam Gagner made a great pass from the corner of the Detroit zone right on the stick of Andrew Cogliano but again Osgood slid across to make the stop.
Shots on goal after one period were 12-6 for Detroit.
Edmonton came flying out of the gate to start the second period, outshooting Detroit 5-0 in the opening 2:54 of the period.
Osgood was forced to make a pair of big saves, the most impressive being a glove stop on Cogliano.
However, the Oilers kept coming at the Red Wings. Pinching deep in the zone, Gilbert picked up the puck and roofed it over an outstretched Osgood for the goal.
The Oilers almost doubled their lead when Dustin Penner tried to redirect one past Osgood from the top of the crease but the Detroit goaltender got his leg on it after a quick feed from Hemsky.
With Matt Greene in the penalty box halfway through the second period, Mathieu Garon was called upon to make a number of big saves. He denied Derek Meech on a blast from the point and then stuck out his right pad to stop Pavel Datsyuk on the rebound.
Moments later, Garon kept the puck out as Tomas Holmstrom tried to sweep it around the Oilers goaltender.
At the 13:15 mark of the period, Gagner picked up the puck along the side boards, spun and passed it to Penner in the slot. His redirection was stopped by Osgood.
Detroit had a shorthanded chance while Edmonton was on the power play late in the period. Pitkanen had trouble handling the puck at the blueline and was stripped of it by Datsyuk. His shot off the rush went off Garon and into the air, just missing the net on its way down near the far post.
Garon came up big again in the final minute, sliding across to stop Derek Meech on a close-in scoring chance.
Shots after two periods were 26-18 for the Red Wings.
Geoff Sanderson scored 1:46 into the third period to extend Edmonton's lead to 2-0. The veteran winger outraced both Jonathan Ericsson and Meech for the puck then skated in on Chris Osgood. He deked out the Detroit netminder for his third of the season.
Dallas Drake had a breakaway, taking a pass from Pavel Datsyuk but Garon made a huge save to keep the Oilers in front by two.
Moments later, Staios clipped Mikael Samuelsson with a high stick to put the Red Wings on the power play.
Early in the man advantage, Jonathan Ericsson teed up a shot from the point that beat a screened Garon through the five hole to make it a 2-1 game, in favour of Edmonton.
Detroit tied the game at 2-2 with 7:42 remaining in the third period. Pavel Datsyuk rifled a wrist shot from the top of the left circle over the shoulder of Garon. The goal was Detroit's second power play goal of the game.
Edmonton went right back on the attack, looking for the go-ahead marker. Gagner fed the puck over to Cogliano on a two-on-one. Osgood came across to stop Cogliano's shot.
Detroit took the lead with 2:16 to go in the third. Valtteri Filppula skated in on the left side and wristed a low shot that fooled Garon, making it 3-2 for the visitors.
A late penalty to Brett Lebda for delay of game gave Edmonton a last-gasp attempt to tie the game up and they did just that with Fernando Pisani scoring with 28.6 seconds remaining in the third period.
Osgood stopped Stoll's initial high shot but Pisani pounced on the rebound, backhanding it along the ice.
At the end of regulation time, shots on goal were 37-27 for the Red Wings.
Ales Hemsky had a good chance to win the game for Edmonton midway through overtime. He was upended while charging towards the net but still managed to direct the puck on goal. Osgood had to make a tough save on the play.
At the other end, Garon made a huge stop with 1:12 to go in OT. Sprawled out on the ice, he managed to get an arm on Kirk Maltby's shot.
Osgood made a sprawling save with 31.3 seconds left. Gagner batted the puck out of the air, directing it on goal. Osgood was able to follow the puck and get his arm on it before it crossed the line.
NOTES: Geoff Sanderson played his 1,100th career NHL game... The Oilers lead the NHL with 16 shootouts this season, holding a record of 13-3. The 13 wins is an NHL record, clipping Dallas who had 12 wins in 2005-06... Andrew Cogliano and Robert Nilsson extended their respective scoring streaks to two games with assists on the Tom Gilbert goal... Jonathan Ericsson's goal was the first goal and point in his three-game NHL career.
Johan Franzen and Matt Greene battle in front of the Oilers net following a save by Mathieu Garon.
- photo by Greg Skafte edmontonoilers.com