The real story going into Sunday's game between the Boston Bruins
and Edmonton Oilers
wasn't the first meeting of Taylor Hall
and Tyler Seguin
as NHL players, it was that the Oilers hadn't beaten the Bruins since Hall was eight years old.
They still haven't, as the Bruins got better of the Oilers for a ninth straight game, this time 3-2, extending a streak dating back to a 6-1 Edmonton win on Oct. 17, 2000. That's a stretch of success that left Hall, taken first overall by Edmonton in the 2010 Entry Draft, and Seguin, picked second by Boston, relegated to footnotes.
Goals by Michael Ryder, Nathan Horton
and Rich Peverley
did the trick as the Bruins not only made it nine straight against the Oilers, but collected their fifth straight road win on the six-game trip they're on.
"The last couple games have been good because we're getting wins," said Peverley, whose first goal and first point with the Bruins since being acquired from Atlanta Feb. 18 stood as the winner. "I want to contribute offensively.
"We're playing a good overall game and everybody is contributing whatever way they can. It's been good to get on the road with everybody and get to know everybody a little bit."
With the win, the Bruins improved to 21-7-4 for 46 points on the road. They're tied with San Jose and Detroit for most road wins and sit alone on top in road points.
"He was really good tonight," Boston coach Claude Julien said of Peverley, who played at center between Chris Kelly
and Ryder. "On face-offs, he's been really good.
"Scoring that goal, obviously, the winner, it was nice to see him do that. I thought that line played really well tonight. That line deserves a lot of credit for our win tonight."
Beaten 5-0 by St. Louis Thursday, the Oilers dropped to 10-19-4 at home with their second straight loss a Rexall Place.
"They're a pretty good team, but we competed," said Edmonton coach Tom Renney. We didn't let numbers bother us, in terms of shots on goal or chances against, anything like that.
"We just kept playing. We wouldn't go away. I think that's important. They're another heavy team that can do some things. We did everything we could to play through it and play with them."
The Bruins had blanked the Oilers in the last three meetings of the teams during the eight-game streak, but Ales Hemsky
ended the shutout string at 205 minutes and seven seconds when he scored 1:05 into the game, snapping a loose puck behind Tuukka Rask
The rest of the period was all Boston, though, as they pumped 15 shots at Devan Dubnyk
and scored on two of them. After Ryder tied it 1-1 at 15:30, Horton made it 2-1 at 18:39, whipping a pass from David Krejci
behind Dubnyk from the slot.
Horton's most telling blow, however, might have been the punch he landed flush to the jaw of Edmonton's Theo Peckham
in a fight earlier in the period. Horton put Peckham down and out with the shot, leaving the Oilers with just five defensemen.
"It was tough," Horton said. "We went down by one goal. I saw him hit Krejci, so I tried to stick up for my teammate. I think we stepped up a little bit more there.
"We're just trying to have fun and trying to enjoy ourselves. When we come to the rink and the game time starts, it's work, but we're still having fun. Everyone gets along here and we really enjoy coming to the rink."
Peverley made it 3-1 in the final minute of the second period, cutting to the net and tucking a forehand behind Dubnyk.
, back in Edmonton's line-up for the first time since Jan. 6, set up a frantic finish when he blew a sharp-angle slap shot past Rask 3:14 into the third period to cut Boston's lead to 3-2.
"On our club, we've got a little bit of everything," said Seguin, who played just 9:32, recorded two shots and didn't have a point.
"We've got some guys who an bury the puck. We've got experienced guys, we've got the fighters, you've got responsible players. I think that's why right now we're having a good year."