The Minnesota Wild aren't accustomed to winning in most road arenas, but they're also not accustomed to losing in Edmonton.
After ending an 11-game winless streak on the road overall, the Wild look to reverse the result of a rare loss to the Oilers at Rexall Place when the Northwest Division rivals meet Friday.
Marian Gaborik scored twice to help Minnesota (22-19-3) end its road slide with a 5-2 win over Vancouver on Thursday night. It was just the fifth victory on the road for the Wild, who haven't won consecutive games away from Xcel Energy Center all season.
"This was very important for the team," Gaborik said. "Hopefully this is how we start winning on the road more often."
Gaborik, who added an assist, was playing just his third game since returning to the Minnesota lineup after missing 34 games with a serious groin injury. The right wing, who went without a point in his first two games back, now has six goals and 10 points this season.
"It felt good for me, after two months, to get that first goal," he said. "But the biggest thing is that we won on the road."
Gaborik's first goal Thursday, which opened the scoring just three minutes into the game, ended an 0-for-15 drought by the Wild on the power play. Minnesota went 2-for-4 with the man advantage.
Brian Rolston added a goal and two assists for Minnesota. Rolston has nine points (5-4-9) in his last seven games and leads the Wild in scoring with 22 goals and 40 points.
Minnesota now heads to Edmonton, where it lost 3-1 on Dec. 14 in the first matchup between the teams this season. The Wild had been 5-0-2 in their previous seven visits to Rexall Place.
Gaborik didn't play in the Wild's loss to the Oilers (21-18-4). He has two goals and five assists in his last four games in Edmonton, with Minnesota winning each contest.
Edmonton improved to 2-0-2 in its last four games with a 3-2 victory over San Jose on Wednesday. Marc-Andre Bergeron and Jarret Stoll each had a power-play goal and an assist, and Mathieu Roy added his first career tally as Edmonton took a 3-0 lead in the first 11 1/2 minutes.
Roy, who was named to the AHL All-Star game this week, scored for the first time in five NHL games.
"The first one is the best one to get and probably the hardest," said Roy, who has six goals and 18 points in 31 games with Hamilton. "It's good that that's out of the way."
Roy, Tom Gilbert, Jan Hejda and Matt Greene - with 84 career NHL games among them - played well in place of injured defensemen Daniel Tjarnqvist (groin) and Ladislav Smid (shoulder).
Ales Hemsky extended his scoring streak to six games with an assist on Bergeron's goal. He has five goals and seven assists during the run, and his 24 assists on the season lead the Oilers.