Edmonton fans spent most of the night booing Dany Heatley, who was making his first appearance at Rexall Place since turning down a trade to the Oilers in July. The Oilers limited him to one assist - bur linemate Patrick Marleau scored three times and set up another goal as the San Jose Sharks rallied for a 5-4 shootout win on Friday night.
Marleau's shorthanded goal with 1:36 tied the game, Joe Pavelski had the shootout winner and Ryan Clowe also scored for the Sharks (17-6-4) who have won three of four and remained atop the NHL standings with 38 points.
"There were a lot of turnovers each way and we were able to capitalize on some bounces," Marleau said of his line, which includes Heatley and center Joe Thornton. "Dany always seems to draw a couple of guys to him to create some room and (Joe) always finds a way to get the pucks through. It's always fun to be on the receiving end of those passes."
San Jose responded nicely after being embarrassed 7-2 at home by Chicago on Wednesday.
"We didn't play too well until we were down by two goals and then we found some urgency to our game," Thornton said. "It was important to bounce back after that last game. We still feel we need to play better, but that was an important win for us tonight."
The Oilers (10-13-4) got two goals from Ryan Potulny and one each from Dustin Penner and Gilbert Brule, but lost their second straight. Edmonton has just four wins in its last 17 games.
"There is no way we should have lost this hockey game," Oilers coach Pat Quinn said. "We did some really good things but what has been our problem here from day one is we don't cover well against our net. We have a group that stares at the puck and doesn't recognize danger."
Heatley was glad to have his first appearance in Edmonton since the non-trade behind him.
"They booed a little bit, but it wasn't too bad," he said. "I'm kind of glad to get this all over with. There was a lot of hype. I'm glad to get the two points and get out of here."
Edmonton went ahead with 5:03 remaining when Ladislav Smid circled deep in the San Jose zone before sending a pass to Potulny in front for his second of the night. The game appeared to be over when the Oilers went on the power play with less than two minutes left. But they lost control of the puck off a faceoff in their own zone, and Marleau pounced to complete his hat trick and tie the game 4-4.
"We actually won the draw," Quinn said. "But then there was a very poor response from our guys. We keep giving teams gifts."
Marleau opened the scoring 5:23 into the game, and Potulny tied it midway through the second period.
The third period was a wide-open 20 minutes.
Penner put Edmonton ahead at 2:07 when he chipped home the rebound of Brule's shot. The two reversed roles at 4:09, with Penner feeding Brule from behind the net for a quick snap past Evgeni Nabokov.
Bur Marleau finished off a pass sent a puck through the crease from Thornton at 5:55 to make it a one-goal game, and Clowe tied it at 3-3 when he scored during a delayed penalty at 8:28.
It was a tough loss for the Oilers, who begin a six-game trip at Vancouver on Saturday and will be without Ales Hemsky for the rest of the season. The team announced Friday that he'll have surgery on his left shoulder.
Material from wire services was used in this report
|Patrick Marleau (15) ASST: Joe Thornton (27), Dany Heatley (12)|
1 - 0 SJS
|Ryan Potulny (4) ASST: NONE|
1 - 1 Tie
|Dustin Penner (14) ASST: Gilbert Brule (8)|
2 - 1 EDM
|Gilbert Brule (7) ASST: Dustin Penner (14), Sam Gagner (10)|
3 - 1 EDM
|Patrick Marleau (16) ASST: Joe Thornton (28), Dan Boyle (18)|
3 - 2 EDM
|Ryane Clowe (5) ASST: Patrick Marleau (14), Marc-Edouard Vlasic (7)|
3 - 3 Tie
|Ryan Potulny (5) ASST: Ladislav Smid (6), Ethan Moreau (3)|
4 - 3 EDM
|SHG - Patrick Marleau (17) ASST: Joe Thornton (29)|
4 - 4 Tie
|1||P. O'Sullivan||P. Marleau||0 - 0|
|2||S. Gagner||J. Pavelski||0 - 1|
|3||D. Penner||0 - 1|
|Frazer McLaren Fighting (maj) against Jean-Francois Jacques|
|Jean-Francois Jacques Fighting (maj) against Frazer McLaren|
|Ryane Clowe Hooking against Dustin Penner|
|Jean-Francois Jacques Roughing against Frazer McLaren|
|Sheldon Souray Cross checking against Torrey Mitchell|
|Jason Demers Holding against Sam Gagner|
|Ryan Potulny Roughing against Jed Ortmeyer|
|Jed Ortmeyer Roughing against Ryan Potulny|
|Ladislav Smid Hooking against Ryane Clowe|
|Scott Nichol Hooking against Ladislav Smid|
|Kent Huskins Holding the stick against Shawn Horcoff|
|Sheldon Souray Hi-sticking against Joe Thornton|
|Joe Pavelski Hooking against Steve Staios|