Oilers come up short vs. Red Wings, lose 3-1 Friday
|Edmonton's Sam Gagner attempts to get the puck past Detroit's Jimmy Howard Friday, November 5 at Rexall Place. The Red Wings won the game 3-1. (Photo by Andy Devlin / Edmonton Oilers Hockey Club)
After struggling through the first, the Oilers outshot the Red Wings in the following two frames to keep it close at Rexall Place Friday night. But unlucky shots and strong goaltending from Jimmy Howard combined for a 3-1 Edmonton loss.
Under the Scope
On the Oilers highlight reel, Taylor Hall
scored the club's only goal, a power-play equalizer early in the second period, and Nikolai Khabibulin
finished with 27 saves.
Edmonton came out with a strong effort, but less than two minutes in, Detroit countered and struck on the scoreboard. At 1:45, Justin Abdelkader slipped the puck just inside Khabibulin's right post to give the Wings an early 1-0 lead.
The visitors doubled up the home shot count through the first-half of the first. At 8:44, coincidental penalties to Gilbert Brule
and Ruslan Salei triggered two minutes of four-on-four, but before time was up, Sam Gagner
added a double-minor of his own for high-sticking Valtteri Filppula. The Oil excelled on the penalty kill to stay within one.
The score stayed stagnant as the period expired, and the Red Wings entered the second period with a 1-0 lead and 13-7 advantage on the shot clock.
Just over two minutes into the middle frame, Dustin Penner
came close to tying it with a slick one-timer, but Jimmy Howard's right post got in the way. The crossbar was next to make a big save, to the frustration of Ales Hemsky
and the crowd.
But fans got something to cheer about one minute later. After hitting Pavel Datsyuk near the Wings bench, Brule was dragged into a fight with Jonathan Ericsson. After trading a few jabs, Brule smoked Ericsson across the jaw, sending the duo to the ice. In addition to fighting majors, Ericsson took an instigating minor and 10-minute misconduct.
Only 37 seconds into the resulting power-play, the Oilers got their goal. Poised just outside the crease, Hall received a short pass from Shawn Horcoff
and lifted the puck over Howard to get his first home goal and even the game at one.
The tie didn't last long, however. At 8:46, Filppula concluded a quick three-way play by snapping the puck past Khabibulin to renew the Wings' lead.
With five minutes left in the period, Ryan Whitney
initiated a fight with Brad Stuart near the penalty boxes. Linesmen quickly diffused the brawl, but that didn't keep penalties off the books as both players took fighting majors and Whitney took an extra instigating minor and 10-minute misconduct.
During the Wings power-play, Khabibulin came up with an amazing save -- batting the puck out of the air while sprawled in the blue paint -- to ensure a successful Oilers kill.
The Wings held their 2-1 lead until the buzzer.
Edmonton had a feisty start to the final frame, highlighted by a Hall-Horcoff two-on-one that ended with a just-wide shot from Hall, but the pressure failed to net a goal.
A late power-play gave the Oil an edge in men, but the extra attacker failed to prompt anything but a shot lead. An empty-netter from Dan Cleary closed out the game, and the Oilers found themselves on the wrong end of a 3-1 decision Friday night.
|Three star selections