Penner taking positive approach

DEREK VAN DIEST, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:50 AM ET

ST. LOUIS, Mo. -- In reality, there is no place on the ice to hide when things aren't going well.

But truth be told, the spotlight is not as bright on the fourth line -- which might suit Dustin Penner just fine as he continues to search for his game.

The big winger looked comfortable on a unit with Zack Stortini and Kyle Brodziak in Tuesday's 3-1 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks.

And while the line wasn't able to score, they did create a number of chances, earning quality ice time in the contest.

"I felt good out there," said Penner.

"Obviously, on the fourth line, you have to make sure you try not to get scored on, which unfortunately we did on their last goal.

"It was good for me to get to work down low with those guys and build some confidence that way. But you can't be complacent out there. I have to try and work hard, make some better passes so I can try to get back up to the first line."

Penner had been demoted after failing to generate much offensively on the first unit in Edmonton's two previous games.

His size, along with the forechecking ability of Brodziak and Stortini, allowed the unit to win a number of battles down low against the Blackhawks and take the puck to the net.

The same will be required of them when they take on the St. Louis Blues tonight.

"He was in his element," said Oilers head coach Craig MacTavish. "That line was effective because they had a power game. They were pretty co-ordinated together, they had a few good shifts and they were a pretty good fourth line."


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