EDMONTON - Jordan Eberle scored in overtime as the Edmonton Oilers continued to try and drag themselves back from a tough start to the season with a 5-4 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday.
The Oilers' forward was able to remain on the ice and set up the winner, sending a pass to Eberle at the side of the net to put the game away 1:48 into overtime, as Edmonton recovered after wasting a 4-1 lead.
Taylor Hall, Nail Yakupov, Nugent-Hopkins and Jesse Joensuu also scored for the Oilers (11-18-3) who have gone 7-3-1 in their last 11 games. Edmonton also improved its troubling home record to 7-9-2 with a 2-1-1 record through the first four games of a five-game homestand.
The Oilers were buzzing to start the game and got on the board just 1:33 into the first period.
Hall had a clear lane to the net and seemed to catch Carolina goalie Cam Ward napping with a quick shot that beat him glove-side. It was Hall's 12th goal of the season and fifth in the last three games.
The Hurricanes tied the game just over six minutes into the opening frame on a power play goal. Ruutu was able to tip a Skinner shot on net and then get his own rebound after Edmonton defender Nick Schultz failed to clear the puck in front and put it past Oilers starter Devan Dubnyk.
Edmonton vaulted back in front with nine minutes remaining in the first period as Yakupov took a pass from Hall and sent a blast from the slot that went through the legs of both defenceman Ron Hainsey and Ward. It was just the fourth goal of the season for the 2012 first overall draft pick.
Yakupov was looking for another with three minutes left with another bullet from in tight, but the puck went off the post.
Edmonton kept coming and made it 3-1 with 1:46 remaining in the first period as Nugent-Hopkins was able to beat Ward with a shot up high while sliding in towards the net on his knees.
Edmonton out-shot the Hurricanes 14-6 in the opening 20 minutes.
The Oilers added to their lead less than two minutes into the second period as Mark Arcobello worked hard to get a backhand away off his knees from behind the net to set up Joensuu for a quick shot on the doorstep and a 4-1 Edmonton advantage.
Carolina started to push its way back into the game and was finally rewarded for it midway through the second after sustained pressure in the Edmonton zone when a puck came loose to Jordan Staal in front of the net and he buried his seventh of the season through Dubnyk's legs.
The Hurricanes made it a 4-3 game eight minutes into the third period, as Eric Staal was able to pick off a poor Eberle pass and streak down the ice on a short-handed breakaway. Staal faked a slap shot and got Dubnyk to commit and go down before calmly putting the puck into the empty net behind him.
Shortly after, Carolina's Riley Nash was tossed from the game and given a major penalty for a hit from behind on Edmonton's Corey Potter, however it was a wasted opportunity for the Oilers, who barely registered a shot.
The lack of offence proved costly as the Hurricanes tied the game with just over five minutes remaining in the third after Edmonton failed to clear the zone in a sloppy sequence. Skinner was able to take a no-look turnaround shot from the point that somehow got past Dubnyk for his 10th goal of the year to make it 4-4 and eventually send the game to extra time.
Both teams return to the ice on Thursday as the Hurricanes play the third game of a four-game trip in Calgary against the Flames, while the Oilers wrap up a five-game homestand against the Boston Bruins.
Notes: It was the first of two meetings this season between the Oilers and Hurricanes, who haven't played a game against each other since December, 2011. It was only the 19th regular season meeting ever between the two teams, who met in the 2006 Stanley Cup final. Their next game will be on March 16 in Carolina... The game featured the NHL's top two stars from the past week. Carolina's Jeff Skinner was the league's first star after scoring five goals and adding an assist. Oiler Taylor Hall was the second star with four goals and two assists… The Hurricanes were still without forward Alexander Semin (concussion), who is reported close to making a return. Carolina was also without the services of defencemen Mike Komisarek (lower body) and Drayson Bowman (lower body)… Edmonton defenceman Jeff Petry sat out after being run head-first into the glass near the boards in Saturday's game against Calgary, but has started skating with the team. Still out with injuries for Edmonton were forward Boyd Gordon (shoulder), goalie Ilya Bryzgalov (possible concussion) and forwards Tyler Pitlick (knee) and late-scratch Ryan Smyth (neck).
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