SUN Hockey Pool

Movin' forward

DEREK VAN DIEST -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 7:38 AM ET

It had been 12 games since they scored a goal.

One of them had not registered a point since January.

Yet on Monday, all three found the net in a 7-1 win over the Phoenix Coyotes.

Forget about getting a monkey off their backs, Ethan Moreau, Michael Peca and Radek Dvorak each shed a gorilla.

"We capitalized," said Peca. "For the last three or four games we've been getting the same amount of chances, but when they don't go in, you don't notice them as much. We've remained confident that we would continue to get chances and (Monday) we capitalized on them."

Moreau got the line going in the second period by converting a cross-ice feed from Peca and hammering it short-side past Coyotes goaltender Curtis Joseph.

Peca then got on the board as the beneficiary of a one-handed pass from Dvorak, who was belted in the slot making the play.

Dvorak then got his goal in the third period on a feed from defenceman Marc-Andre Bergeron.

Three goals and six points, not a bad night's work for the Oilers third line.

'FUN TO PLAY'

"We met before the game and talked about how we've had a few chances the last three or four games but we weren't able to score," Dvorak said. "We got goals from all four lines which is the great thing and when you get efforts like we did (Monday), it's fun to play the game."

The trio each picked up a goal and an assist in the game. They finished a combined plus-seven. Dvorak had five shots in the contest, his highest total in 20 games.

"We showed we could play this game, it was a huge couple of points for us and we have to keep moving forward," Dvorak said. "It takes a lot of pressure off us, especially when it's a 7-1 game. But the game is behind us, we can enjoy that game until (yesterday) morning and from then we have to keep preparing ourselves for the next game."

It has been a tough year for all three players.

Dvorak scored 31 goals for the New York Rangers in 2000-2001. This year he has eight. Peca had 25 goals and 35 assists with the New York Islanders in 2001-2002. This year he has nine goals and 13 assists.

Moreau scored 20 goals for the Oilers in 2003-2004. This year, he has 10.

"We need offensive production from that third line, there's no question," said Oilers head coach Craig MacTavish. "It's nice to see them all contribute in that respect (Monday). Hopefully that provides them with confidence.

"They are all 20-goal scorers. Radek's scored more than that in his career, but it's all a product of them having confidence."

LOPSIDED RESULT

Getting a lopsided result was just what the Oilers needed heading into their four-game road trip starting tomorrow in Minnesota.

"Minnesota plays good defensive hockey," Dvorak said. "They always have five guys in the neutral zone and they are dangerous on the rush. Their defencemen just play the puck off the boards and their forwards just skate into it.

"You have to be ready for that, we have to play better in the neutral zone and get the puck in deep and make their defencemen skate 200 feet to get it."


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