Kyle Brodziak #21 of the Minnesota Wild tries to get the puck away from Jordan Eberle #14 of the Edmonton Oilers in the first period on November 25, 2011 at Xcel Energy Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
The Oilers' record improves to 12-8-2 on the season, as the team leaps into 6th place in the NHL's Western Conference.
The Oilers have no time to rest as they take on the Colorado Avalanche on Saturday at 5:00 p.m. MST. The game can be seen on Hockey Night in Canada.
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins scored a pair, while four other teammates recorded two-point outings as the Edmonton Oilers downed the Minnesota Wild 5-2 Friday evening in downtown Saint Paul.
With the win, the Oilers' 17-game winless streak at the Xcel Energy Center has been snapped.
The Oilers controlled the play early, pinning Minnesota in their zone for the first 90 seconds. Shawn Horcoff just missed on two shot opportunities before Ryan Smyth's blast from the right circle was kicked away by Josh Harding.
Minnesota came back with a couple of great scoring chances about three minutes in. Matt Cullen and Cal Clutterbuck were both turned away on rapid-fire opportunities on Oilers goalie Nikolai Khabibulin.
Edmonton struck for the game's first goal at the 5:15 mark. Jordan Eberle spun in the corner and found Ryan Smyth planted right in the crease where he slipped it through the legs of Harding to make it 1-0 Oilers.
Brad Staubitz received a double minor for roughing 6:35 into the game. Darcy Hordichuk collided with the big Wild winger -- which caused Theo Peckham to go flying -- and moments later Staubitz knocked down Hordichuk.
The Oilers were unable to generate much on the man advantage.
Hordichuk hammered Staubitz into the boards with five minutes to play and Staubitz immediately started pummelling the Oilers winger. He received two minutes for cross-checking and two for roughing, giving Edmonton another four-minute power-play.
The Wild seemed to have all the momentum on their penalty kill, generating a couple of chances on the Oilers but play came back the other way and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins managed to find a loose puck in the crease and poke it in past Harding to make it 2-0 Edmonton.
Edmonton's first penalty came when Sam Gagner was sent off for slashing with 1:47 to play in the opening frame.
With 40 seconds to go in the penalty, Theo Peckham took a cross-checking minor to put the OIlers down two men. The five-on-three enabled the Wild to get a goal to draw within one with 9.2 seconds left in the period.
Devin Setoguchi batted down the puck in the crease before lifted it past a fallen Khabibulin for the marker to make ti 2-1.
After one, shots on goal were 13 to 8 in favour of the Wild.
The Oilers opened the second period down a man but were able to kill off the remainder of Peckham's penalty with ease.
Just prior to the period's midway point, the Wild evened the score on a goal by Pierre-Marc Bouchard. Bouchard stripped Nugent-Hopkins of the puck in the neutral zone before breaking in alone. He made a nice deke before beating Khabibulin through the five-hole to make it a 2-2 game.
Ladislav Smid made his physical presence known later as he hammered Cal Clutterbuck at the blueline.
Edmonton regained the lead late in the middle frame. Taylor Hall took the puck into the corner before throwing it back to the point and Tom Gilbert. Gilbert moved it to Horcoff who put it on goal. Hall was perched right at the side of the net to put home the rebound and make it 3-2 Oilers.
A couple minutes later, Khabibulin made a brilliant save, stretching out his right pad to rob Matt Cullen of a goal on a redirection.
With 26 seconds to go, Tom Gilbert was called for interference giving the Wild another chance to get a late power-play goal and head into the intermission tied.
The Oilers were able to kill off the early portion of the penalty as the teams headed into the second intermission with Edmonton leading 3-2. Shots on goal were 19 to 18 for the Wild.
The Oilers got some breathing room in the final frame when Ales Hemsky took the puck behind the Wild net and found Shawn Horcoff in front. Horcoff made no mistake, roofing it past Harding for the 4-2 lead.
Although Minnesota was pressing to get back into the game, the shot count was fairly even through the first 15 minutes of the final frame. The Wild had a 10-9 edge to that point.
The Wild elected to pull Josh Harding for an extra-attacker with just over a minute to play. Wasting no time, Jordan Eberle broke up-ice and dished to Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, securing a 5-2 win with an easy empty-net tap-in at 18:37.
The Oilers cruised to the buzzer, snapping a 17-game winless streak at the Xcel Energy Center.