a season that will be remembered for its promising young offensive talent, it was a young goalie who stole the show Thursday night at Rexall Place.
Devan Dubnyk took another step toward cementing his place as Edmonton's No. 1 goalie, stopping 35 shots for his first shutout of the season and the third of his career in a 2-0 win against the Philadelphia Flyers.
"Tonight when they got some chances late, you just thought he was going to make the saves," defenseman Ryan Whitney said. "You can just tell he had so much confidence in there on nights like that. He just looks so big in net, and it's great for us."
The 25-year-old, who has started the last four games for Edmonton, won his second in a row. He conceded one goal on 22 shots in a 6-1 win at Calgary on Tuesday.
"I felt good, right from the Calgary game," Dubnyk said. "I wanted to just kind of relax, and let the pucks come to you, be comfortable in your ability to stop it. When you're all uptight, that's when bodies seem to get in the way all the time."
Dubnyk also made it two shutouts in a row when the Oilers play host to the Flyers. Two seasons ago, Edmonton shut Philadelphia out, 1-0, on Feb. 3, 2010.
Perhaps a little more predictably, two young guns scored the goals, both of which came in the second period. Taylor Hall scored on the power play, bringing his man-advantage total to 12, fourth-best in the NHL. Jordan Eberle added one five minutes later to up his team-leading total to 27.
After a hard-fought 5-4 overtime win in Winnipeg on Tuesday, Philadelphia couldn't solve Dubnyk in the second of a four-game trip. The Flyers fell to 33-20-7 and missed an opportunity to move ahead of New Jersey for fourth in the Eastern Conference standings. The Flyers are even on points with Pittsburgh at 73, one shy of the Devils.
"In the second period we came out flat," forward Danny Briere said. "And they really took control of the period from the get-go. It took us too long to respond."
Ilya Bryzgalov made 28 saves and lost in regulation for the first time since Feb. 5 against the New York Rangers.
"We got a big effort from Bryz," Briere said. "He kept us in the game until the end, we just couldn't get one."
With Pavel Kubina off for holding, Hall broke a scoreless tie at 3:26 of the middle period. Whitney's shot from the high slot flew left past the net and caromed to the lower left circle, where Hall one-timed it into an impossibly small window between Bryzgalov and the near post.
The goal was the ninth power-play goal allowed by Philadelphia in its last seven games.
Five minutes later, Eberle's relentless pursuit of the puck paid off. Eberle tracked it down and picked off a pass in the left circle. Eberle skated to the crease and let go a shot that bounced off the inside of Bryzgalov's pad and trickled across the goal line at 8:04.
Late in the second, Scott Hartnell's frustrations boiled over in a run at Magnus Paajarvi, who had to be helped off the ice with a right-leg injury. Hartnell was slapped with a kneeing penalty.
"What do I think of it?" Edmonton associate coach Ralph Krueger said of the hit. "Just, those are decisions referees make on the spot. Your stomach, as a coach, would like a five-minute minimum. It's just what you see and what he sees on the video afterward."
Despite a 15-5 advantage in shots in the third, the Flyers nearly conceded another late when Kimmo Timonen dragged Shawn Horcoff down during a shorthanded break at 17:06.
Philadelphia will have to regain the form that has made them the NHL's best road team when they face Calgary at Scotiabank Saddledome on Friday.
Material from team media and wire services was used in this report