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Oilers outlasted by Predators

by Staff Writer / Edmonton Oilers
Mathieu Roy and Raffi Torres had the best scoring chances of the game early in the first period. Roy's shot from the point was handled by Vokoun but he couldn't corral the rebound. Torres chopped at it and Vokoun kicked the shot out of harm's way.

Jason Smith and Ramzi Abid dropped the gloves later on in the period. It was a spirited bout with Abid hanging in there with the tough Oilers defenceman.

Roloson was sharp late in the period, stopping Vern Fiddler on a wrister from the right circle.

Shots after one period were 9-8 for Nashville.

A penalty to J-P Dumont for hooking early in the second gave the Oilers their second power play of the night. On the ensuing power play, Ales Hemsky used Predators defenceman Dan Hamhuis as a screen while wristing a shot from the right faceoff circle. His shot eluded Vokoun and gave Edmonton a 1-0 lead.

The Preds tied the game 1:40 later as Dumont found Shea Weber on a two-on-one. Weber's shot found the top corner behind Roloson to tie the game at 1-1.

Sparks started to fly between the two teams a couple minutes later as Darcy Hordichuk levelled Smid from behind into the boards. Jason Smith then challenged Hordichuk to a fight and the two players dropped the gloves.

In the aftermath of the fight, Smith received two for instigating while Hordichuk got two for charging Smid. Hordichuk also received a game misconduct for not having his jersey tied down.

Nashville took a 2-1 lead about 30 seconds later as Alexander Radulov took a feed from Peter Forsberg in the slot and fired it past Roloson. The goal came 41 seconds after the Predators tied it up.

Late in the second, Hemsky set up Horcoff in the slot after the two players created a two-on-one deep in the Nashville zone. Vokoun slid across to stop Horcoff and then deny Patrick Thoresen on the rebound.

Shots were even at 20-20 after two periods.

In the third, Edmonton tied the game up at 2-2 early on. After taking a nice back pass from Pisani in the neutral zone, Sykora skated across the line before blasting a shot on goal. The puck found its way past Vokoun just sneaking under his left pad into the back of the net.

Three minutes later, the Oilers took the lead as Toby Petersen picked up a nice pass from Joffrey Lupul and rushed into the Nashville zone. Petersen beat Shea Weber wide before firing the puck five-hole through Vokoun.

However, the lead was shortlived as the Predators came right back with a goal 24 seconds later. Dumont picked up the puck behind the Edmonton net and made a nice back pass to Arnott in front who tapped in the one-timer for the goal.

Dumont then scored one of his own 2:19 after Arnott had tied it. Abid made a nice pass across the ice to Dumont in the slot and he redirected it past Roloson to move the host Predators in front 4-3.

With 1:44 to go in the third, Hemsky came close to setting up the tying goal. He created some room by deking out Dan Hamhuis but the fallen Predators defenceman managed to trip up Hemsky just as he was circling to find Sykora in front.

Edmonton made one final push to tie the game while on the power play but could not.
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