EDMONTON â€” Defenceman Ryan Ellis made sure Nashville stayed on track on its road trip.
Ellis scored in regulation and added the shootout winner as the Predators won their second road game in a row, defeating the Edmonton Oilers 3-2 on Friday.
“We knew this was an important trip for us, it’s always tough when you go and you play five games on the road, but for our team to come out and play that way on a back-to-back against a good hockey team, to get two points is a good step for us,” Ellis said.
Viktor Arvidsson also scored in regulation for the Predators (22-17-7), who have won three of four games on their current road swing. Nashville’s Pekka Rinne stopped 30 shots for the win.
“It was a hard game against a real good offensive team, and I thought all areas of our game were really, really good tonight,” said Predators captain Mike Fisher. “I thought we played real hard.”
Matt Hendricks and Milan Lucic responded for the Oilers (25-15-8), who had a four-game winning streak snapped.
“It’s always disappointing when you lose in a shootout like that,” said Oilers goalie Cam Talbot, who made 42 saves in the defeat. “You never want to give up any points, especially now when you want to be separating yourself from the teams below you and catching the teams ahead of us.”
Both goalies were sharp in the scoreless first period, with Talbot making 12 saves and Rinne stopping eight.
The Oilers came close to breaking the deadlock six minutes into the second period as a short-handed shot by Ryan Nugent-Hopkins trickled past Rinne, who wriggled his way back into position to stop the rebound opportunity.
Nashville finally got the game’s first goal with 2:48 left in the second period as Arvidsson put his team’s second rebound attempt up and over Talbot for his 11th goal of the season.
Edmonton then tied it up just 41 seconds later as a Hendricks wrist shot got through Rinne’s legs and dribbled its way into the net.
Nashville went up 2-1 seven minutes into the third period as a long Ellis knuckler beat Talbot up high, after appearing to deflect off the glove of defender Brandon Davidson.
Edmonton knotted the game up again with 4:29 left as Leon Draisaitl sent it in front while on the power play and Lucic tipped it past Rinne to end a 12-game scoring drought and send the game to extra time.
The Oilers had a ton of chances in overtime, but Ryan Johansen came closest to ending it, hitting a post behind Talbot with 27 seconds left.
“It’s great that we get a point out of it and got nine of 12 points on this six-game homestand, which is pretty good, but it would have been nice to get the win,” Lucic said.
The Oilers are right back at it on Saturday in Calgary against the Flames, while the Predators wrap up a five-game road trip in Minnesota on Sunday.
Notes: It was the first of three meetings between the Oilers and Predators this season and the lone game in Edmontonâ€¦ Nashville defenceman P.K. Subban returned to the lineup after missing the last 16 games with an upper-body injuryâ€¦ Rinne came into the game with a 6-0 record in his last six appearances against the Oilers, with a 0.99 goals-against average and .965 save percentageâ€¦ The game featured 88 faceoffs, “an astronomical amount” according to Oilers head coach Todd McLellan.
Shane Jones, The Canadian Press