EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) - The Edmonton Oilers and Los Angeles Kings put on a show that belied their poor places in the Western Conference standings.
Ales Hemsky scored two goals and added an assist for the Edmonton Oilers, who earned their third straight win with a 5-4 victory over the Los Angeles Kings in a matchup Thursday night of the bottom two teams in the West.
Andrew Cogliano, Robert Nilsson and Fernando Pisani also scored for the Oilers, who have won six straight at home. Edmonton is seven points behind Colorado and the postseason cutoff in the West.
"I can't remember the last time we got five goals, it was like '80s night out there," Oilers coach Craig MacTavish said. "Chances at both ends, especially in the second period, it was whirlwind hockey. Which is fine if you come away on the right side of it."
Dustin Brown had a pair of goals and Anze Kopitar and Patrick O'Sullivan also scored for the Kings, who have lost four of five and are 16 points behind eighth-place Colorado.
The Oilers scored on their first shot just 47 seconds in. Hemsky sprung Cogliano, and the rookie sent a wrist shot over the glove of goalie Dan Cloutier for his 11th goal.
"There was a lot of open ice out there and it was fun to play in," Pisani said. "It was one of those games where you could see Hemsky just winding it up and watching him fly."
Hemsky's performance was magnified by the fact he is playing with an injured wrist. It clearly hurt after he landing on it following his first goal of the night.
"It's still a little better than it was a week ago," he said. "It's something that will improve after the season, but right now I jam it every game. It's just something I have to battle through."
Los Angeles responded late in the period. Kopitar had his original shot blocked by Steve Staios, but picked up the rebound and scored with 5.7 seconds left.
The Kings took the lead five minutes into the second after O'Sullivan fired a shot from the left circle on a 2-on-1 that seemed to freeze goalie Mathieu Garon.
Edmonton tied it 3 minutes later when Hemsky skated past Kopitar and scored a diving backhand goal with Cloutier down.
Less than two minutes later, it would tied again.
The Oilers briefly regained the lead with 10:57 left in the second as Cloutier made the initial stop on Sam Gagner's shot, but Nilsson chipped a backhander into the open net.
A similar play netted another tying goal when Brown scored his 27th of the season off a rebound.
Hemsky made it 4-3 with his second of the contest on a long shot that avoided hitting four players on its way into the net. Just 1:08 later, Geoff Sanderson sent a pass in front that Pisani stretched out far enough to tip past Cloutier for the sixth goal of the wild second period.
|Edmonton Oilers right wing Ales Hemsky, left, leaps over Los Angeles Kings goalie Dan Cloutier and scores one of the two goals that he tallied against the Kings in Edmonton on Thursday, Feb. 28, 2008. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Jimmy Jeong)
"The second period reminded me of some of the games we used to play in when Kevin (Lowe) was playing for the team and a couple other great players were playing for the team," Los Angeles coach Marc Crawford said. "It was end-to-end chances and it was loose to say the least. It's not really the type of game that we want to be playing."
The Kings got back into the game again with just over 8 minutes left on a short-handed goal. Brown scored his second of the game, shooting through the legs of defender Tom Gilbert to cut Edmonton's lead to one goal.
"If you look at the game it wasn't a matter of them making great plays it was a matter of us making poor plays," Brown said. "They were able to capitalize on a lot of the mistakes we made in the second period. When you make that many mistakes it's tough to win games."
Notes: Edmonton D Joni Pitkanen was back in the lineup after being helped off the ice Tuesday when he took a shot off the ankle. The injury-riddled Oilers have only 20 players on their active roster. ... The Kings activated D Rob Blake off the injured list. He had missed 11 games due to a broken ankle. ... Los Angeles LW Ladislav Nagy hasn't been responding to treatment for a neck injury. He plans to take a couple of weeks before deciding whether or to have season-ending surgery. ... Sanderson's second period assist was his 700th NHL point.