Gagner hat trick powers Oilers to 8-1 win
|Andrew Cogliano watches as Fernando Pisani's shot slips past Avalanche goaltender Peter Budaj in the second period (Photo by Michael Martin/NHLI via Getty Images)
by Marc Ciampa | edmontonoilers.com
scored his first career NHL hat trick and both Gagner and Ales Kotalik put up four points as the Edmonton Oilers rolled to an 8-1 win over the Colorado Avalanche on Thursday night.
The Oilers got on the board first when Ethan Moreau scored 4:02 into the opening period. Tom Gilbert
did a great job keeping the puck in the zone then fed it across the high slot to Kyle Brodziak. Brodziak then directed the puck towards the net where Ethan Moreau picked it up. Moreau pounded the rebound in behind Avalanche starting goaltender Peter Budaj for the goal.
Patrick O'Sullivan took a slashing penalty 16 seconds after the Moreau goal to give Colorado the game's first power play.
Edmonton was able to kill off that penalty but Colorado managed to tie the game shortly after it expired. Shawn Horcoff
won the draw in the Oilers zone straight back off the end boards. Cody McLeod of the Avs raced in to scoop it up, spun around and fired it through the legs of a surprised Dwayne Roloson.
The Oilers got their first man advantage at the 7:51 mark when Ryan Smyth was sent off for hooking. On the ensuing power play, Horcoff took advantage of a broken play in front of the Avalanche net to corral the loose puck and push it past Budaj to give Edmonton a 2-1 advantage.
Just past the midway point of the opening frame, Sheldon Souray
teed up a blast from the top of the left circle that rang off the post short side behind Budaj.
The Oilers finished the opening period on the man advantage with Ben Guite in the box. That power play carried over to the middle frame.
The Oilers had a 12-7 edge in shots after period one.
Mike Vernace took a holding penalty three minutes into the second period to give Edmonton their third power play of the night. The Oilers created a lot of pressure down low in the Avalanche zone but were unable to extend their lead.
10:35 into the middle frame, the Oilers were yet to get a shot on goal while Colorado had four.
Ales Kotalik got a shot on goal about a minute later to break the goose egg for Edmonton. However, the second and third shots on goal were the ones that truly counted.
carried the puck into the corner of the Avalanche zone where he found Fernando Pisani at the right hash marks of the left faceoff circle. Pisani one-timed it past Budaj for the goal to make it 3-1.
A minute and four seconds later, Robert Nilsson spotted Sam Gagner
at the right post where Gagner quickly fired it in to extend Edmonton's lead to 4-1. Ales Kotalik got the other assist for his first point as an Oiler.
Edmonton had a total of four shots in period two. Colorado also had four shots. Edmonton had a 16-11 lead in shots over 40 minutes.
Colorado almost got their second goal about six minutes into the third period while on the power play. T.J. Hensick picked up the puck in the slot and had Roloson out of position but the Oilers netminder blindly stuck his pads out and made the stop.
Near the midway point of the period Sam Gagner
spotted Ales Kotalik driving to the net. Kotalik redirected Gagner's seeing-eye pass to make it 5-1 in favour of Edmonton.
About 12 minutes in, Ladislav Smid
took an elbow right to the face from Ian Laperriere. Smid was shaken up on the play and Laperriere got two minutes on the play.
On the ensuing power play, Kotaik teed up a shot from the right point that Gagner redirected in front past Budaj to give Edmonton a 6-1 lead. The goal was Gagner's second of the night and both Kotalik and Gagner's third point.
Late in the third, the Oilers exploded for a pair of goals to take an 8-1 lead.
blasted a rolling puck from the left point past Budaj and then 37 seconds later, Gagner took a behind-the-net feed from Robert Nilsson in the high slot and blasted it in for his first career NHL hat trick.
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