Oilers
Wild
1 - 5 Final
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Backstrom, Wild continue home dominance of Oilers

Jan 16, 2009 - 9:59 AM By Anthony Maggio PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

ST. PAUL, Minnesota (Ticker) -- Hosting a team it has dominated at home proved to be a successful formula for the Minnesota Wild.

All-Star Niklas Backstrom made 20 saves and Pierre-Marc Bouchard recorded a goal and two assists as the Wild skated to a 5-1 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday in the first of six meetings between the Northwest Division rivals this season.

Bouchard, defenseman Brent Burns and Eric Belanger scored third-period goals for Minnesota, which has won eight straight home meetings with the Oilers and eight in a row overall at Xcel Energy Center.

"Any win in your division is pretty important, and it's our first against the Oilers, so it definitely feels good to get that win," Bouchard said. "We'll have some good battles against them in the near future."

Krys Kolanos and Cal Clutterbuck tallied in the first session while Backstrom improved to 10-0-0 lifetime - and 8-0-0 at home - against Edmonton. The 10 wins are Backstrom's most against any team.

Liam Reddox scored the lone goal for the Oilers, who had their two-game winning streak snapped.

"The last few minutes did get away from us, but up until that third goal, I thought we were in the game," Edmonton All-Star defenseman Sheldon Souray said. "We were pushing it hard and had some good opportunities. I probably thought the first two periods, we outplayed them. That doesn't always reflect on the scoreboard, but we can take a lot of positives out of this."

Former Wild goaltender Dwayne Roloson stopped 19 shots for the Oilers, who have not won in Minnesota since January 16, 2007. That is thanks largely in part to Backstrom, who has a 1.58 goals-against average and a .935 save percentage in 12 career appearances against Edmonton.

Backstrom was solid in this contest as well, but it was a resurgent offense that paced Minnesota. After scoring eight goals over a five-game stretch, the Wild have tallied 11 times in their last two contests.

"For one, balance, and two, we're finding guys, we're making plays," Clutterbuck said of the recent scoring binge. "We're beating a guy first and we're making a play. Before, we were just kind of bearing our heads and shooting at the net, and the bounces weren't going our way. We're doing a little bit of both now - making plays when we have to and getting the puck to the net when we have to."

While the teams entered with identical 21-18-3 records, Minnesota struck first on a goal by Kolanos. Leading a 2-on-1 rush, Antti Miettinen slipped the puck past defenseman Lubomir Visnovsky at the blue line, caught up to it in the faceoff circle and hit a streaking Kolanos, who was able to stuff it past Roloson at 6:25 of the first period.

The lead was short-lived, however, as Reddox scored less than six minutes later to knot the contest. But the Wild regained the edge for good with 65 seconds left in the session, when Clutterbuck beat Roloson high to the glove side with a shot from the slot for his second goal in as many games.

After a scoreless second session, Bouchard doubled the advantage at 8:21 of the third. Souray couldn't handle a pass in his own zone and the puck bounced off his skate to a charging Bouchard, who fired a shot from the slot past Roloson.

"(Bouchard) was really good tonight, probably his best game all year," Wild coach Jacques Lemaire said. "He created plays, was strong with the puck, played good in his own zone and good in the neutral zone."

Burns made it 4-1 with 4:41 remaining and Belanger tallied during a 5-on-3 power play in the final minute to cap the scoring.

"Outside of the heinous defensive breakdowns and the lapses on some of the plays, we played pretty good," Oilers coach Craig MacTavish said. "It's as hard as we've competed in a while. We'll take the competitive level out of that game and work on the execution defensively. In spite of the loss, this could be a big step for us in terms of the way we battled and competed."






  • 5
    roots
    MattDOOM777 Added 5 roots

    Oilers 1, Wild 5  FinalJan 15 11:55 PM


  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    EDMONTON 1 0 0 1
    MINNESOTA 2 0 3 5 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MIN - KRYSTOFER KOLANOS 3 (ANTTI MIETTINEN) 6:25
    EDM - LIAM REDDOX 3 (DUSTIN PENNER, DENIS GREBESHKOV) 11:44
    MIN - CAL CLUTTERBUCK 6 (JAMES SHEPPARD, PIERRE-MARC
    BOUCHARD) 18:55
    2ND PRD: NONE
    3RD PRD: MIN - PIERRE-MA

    Jan 15 10:32 PM


  • NHL
    EDMONTON 1
    MINNESOTA 5
    3RD PRD: MIN - (PP) ERIC BELANGER 9 (ANDREW BRUNETTE, PIERRE-MARC
    BOUCHARD) 19:14 (TWO-MAN ADVANTAGE)

    Oilers 1, Wild 5  3rd - 0:46Jan 15 10:31 PM


  • NHL
    EDMONTON 1
    MINNESOTA 4
    3RD PRD: MIN - BRENT BURNS 7 (MIKKO KOIVU) 15:19

    Oilers 1, Wild 4  3rd - 4:41Jan 15 10:21 PM


  • NHL
    EDMONTON 1
    MINNESOTA 3
    3RD PRD: MIN - PIERRE-MARC BOUCHARD 8 (UNASSISTED) 8:21

    Oilers 1, Wild 3  3rd - 11:39Jan 15 10:06 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    EDMONTON 1 0 1
    MINNESOTA 2 0 2 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MIN - KRYSTOFER KOLANOS 3 (ANTTI MIETTINEN) 6:25
    EDM - LIAM REDDOX 3 (DUSTIN PENNER, DENIS GREBESHKOV) 11:44
    MIN - CAL CLUTTERBUCK 6 (JAMES SHEPPARD, PIERRE-MARC
    BOUCHARD) 18:55
    2ND PRD: NONE
    SHOTS ON GO

    Jan 15 9:35 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    EDMONTON 1 1
    MINNESOTA 2 2 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MIN - KRYSTOFER KOLANOS 3 (ANTTI MIETTINEN) 6:25
    EDM - LIAM REDDOX 3 (DUSTIN PENNER, DENIS GREBESHKOV) 11:44
    MIN - CAL CLUTTERBUCK 6 (JAMES SHEPPARD, PIERRE-MARC
    BOUCHARD) 18:55
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST

    Jan 15 8:45 PM


  • NHL
    EDMONTON 1
    MINNESOTA 2
    1ST PRD: MIN - CAL CLUTTERBUCK 6 (JAMES SHEPPARD, PIERRE-MARC
    BOUCHARD) 18:55

    Oilers 1, Wild 2  1st - 1:05Jan 15 8:44 PM


  • NHL
    EDMONTON 1
    MINNESOTA 1
    1ST PRD: EDM - LIAM REDDOX 3 (DUSTIN PENNER, DENIS GREBESHKOV) 11:44

    Oilers 1, Wild 1  1st - 8:16Jan 15 8:34 PM


  • NHL
    EDMONTON 0
    MINNESOTA 1
    1ST PRD: MIN - KRYSTOFER KOLANOS 3 (ANTTI MIETTINEN) 6:25

    Oilers 0, Wild 1  1st - 13:35Jan 15 8:22 PM