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Wild double up Oilers 6-3

by Staff Writer / Edmonton Oilers
The Oilers had a great scoring chance five minutes into the game on only their second shot of the night. After the puck was dumped in the corner, Filip Kuba backhanded a pass blindly in front to Raffi Torres. Roloson was alert in making a stop on the quick snap shot from Torres.

At the eight-minute mark, Minnesota had a chance of their own. After Morrison stopped a blast from the point, Todd White skated in for the rebound chance but the Oilers netminder poked it away at the last minute to prevent a scoring chance.

30 seconds later, the Wild scored the game's first goal. Kurtis Foster fired one from the high slot that Morrison turned away but Chouinard crashed the net and chipped in the rebound to make it 1-0. The goal was initially reviewed to ensure it crossed the goal line.

With 7:39 left in the period, Wes Walz was sent off for four minutes after high sticking Ryan Smyth. A minute into the ensuing power play, Smyth had a great chance in front, firing a shot off the post and crossbar before the Wild could clear it out of harm's way. Roloson may have got a piece of the initial shot.

Edmonton almost scored a flukey goal late in the period when Jaroslav Spacek one-hopped the puck in on goal. Roloson didn't know where it was but it managed to bounce off his pad instead of into the net.

With two minutes left in the opening frame and Edmonton on the power play, Brian Rolston created a two-on-one shorthanded opportunity. On the play, Marc-Andre Bergeron slid into the Oilers cage and received a questionable delay-of-game call for his efforts.

On the next shift, Randy Robitaille rang a shot off the crossbar behind Morrison. The puck then went to Pierre-Marc Bouchard at the top of the left faceoff circle. Bouchard wristed it high blocker side past Morrison, doubling the Wild lead.

16 seconds later, Bouchard scored his second of the game to give Minnesota a commanding 3-0 lead. This time, Bouchard wristed it from the right side after rushing into the Edmonton zone. The goal set a new Minnesota Wild record for fastest two goals by a single player.

At the end of the period, Georges Laraque and Derek Boogaard dropped the gloves in a battle of arguably the league's top two heavyweights. Boogaard had the advantage early but Laraque recovered enough later in the bout to gain a slight decision.

Shots on goal after one were 12-9 for the visiting Wild.

Edmonton struck early in the second period shortly after a Minnesota penalty to Kyle Wanvig expired. Steve Staios blasted a shot from the point and Torres was right in front where he backhanded it past the outstretched leg of Roloson, making it a 3-1 game.

The Oilers made things interesting just over three minutes later when Radek Dvorak put home a Jaroslav Spacek rebound to make it a 3-2 game. Dvorak backhanded it past Roloson after the Wild netminder had trouble handling Spacek's point blast.

With Edmonton pressing for the tying goal, Minnesota did a great job playing the waiting game stacking up defenders on the blueline to not let the Oilers get anything going.

Eventually, a turnover was created as Hemsky tried to move the puck into the Wild zone and Pascal Dupuis scored his eighth of the year to put Minnesota in front 4-2.

Minnesota regained their three-goal edge with time ticking down in the second period. Andrei Zyuzin's shot from the point eluded a screened Mike Morrison, making it a 5-2 game.

Shots after two periods were 24-19 in favour of the Wild.

Ty Conklin came in to start the third period for Edmonton and was thrown right into the fire. 42 seconds into the period, a Chris Pronger penalty put the Oilers on a two-man advantage for 1:07. Conklin and the Edmonton penalty killers did a good job holding Minnesota off the scoresheet.

Edmonton was unable to score on a two-man advantage of their own several minutes later but as the penalties expired, Todd Harvey intercepted a Wild clearing attempted and one-timed a blast from the right side boards that beat Roloson just under the crossbar to make it a 5-3 game.

Wes Walz added an empty-net goal to seal the deal for Minnesota.

NOTES: Oilers Jason Smith, Ethan Moreau, Dick Tarnstrom, and Jussi Markkanen all did not dress due to injury or illness... Brent Burns, Alexandre Daigle and Stephane Veilleux were healthy scratches for the visiting Wild. Alex Henry dressed as a seventh defenceman and took a regular shift up front on the fourth line... With an assist on the Torres goal, Stoll increased his scoring streak to a career-high eight games.
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