Not so home sweet home

Los Angeles Kings' Alexander Frolov is checked by Edmonton Oilers' Jeff Deslauriers and Lubomir...

Los Angeles Kings' Alexander Frolov is checked by Edmonton Oilers' Jeff Deslauriers and Lubomir Visnovsky. (REUTERS/Dan Riedlhuber)

ROBERT TYCHKOWSKI, EDMONTON SUN

, Last Updated: 8:31 AM ET

What happens on the road stays on the road.

Unfortunately for the Oilers.

They were kind of hoping everything that happened on the most successful road trip in franchise history would follow them back to Rexall Place last night, but it didn't.

Not all of it, anyway.

While much of what helped them to five straight victories on their perfect road swing made it back to Edmonton, the ability to close out a close game in the third period got held up at customs.

"After you win five in a row like we did, there's a tendency maybe to let off the throttle a bit, and I think we were guilty of that tonight," said Dustin Penner, after a late goal by Los Angeles veteran Sean O'Donnell -- his first in 158 games -- gave the Los Angeles Kings a 3-2 victory that spoiled Edmonton's homecoming.

"To give up a goal in the last 10 minutes is not what good teams do. We have to be better in that area."

The Oilers came in looking for their first six-game win streak since March of 2002.

Check that. They came in needing their first six-game win streak since 2002, because despite going 5-0 on the road, they came back to Edmonton only two points closer to eighth place than when they left.

"We're still in 12th place or something, so we have to put some wins together here," said Gilbert Brule.

NOT ENOUGH

"Five in a row is not enough. We're not satisfied with that, especially on our homestand. We wanted to start it off right."

It was the Oilers playing the dreaded first game back after a long road trip and the Kings playing back-to-back after having their eight-game undefeated streak come to an end Monday in Vancouver.

A coin toss, in other words.

It didn't start well as Denis Grebeshkov, making his return to Edmonton after being out nearly a month with a knee injury, got off on the wrong foot.

A giveaway on his second shift of the game set up a two-on-one and the Kings' first goal by Brad Richardson at 5:29. Dustin Brown made it 2-0 Kings at 3:44 of the second.

BEAUTIFUL

The Oilers got that one back on Sheldon Souray's point shot (off a Ryan Potulny faceoff win) at 12:17 of the second and squared it at 3:43 of the third period when Potulny wired a one-timer upstairs after a beautiful give-and-go with Souray.

That's when the Oilers would take over on their road trip ... but it didn't happen at home.

"After that we had them on the ropes a little bit," said Potulny.

"That's when you have to put your foot on the pedal and take it to them, and we didn't do that.

"Maybe we sat back. I don't know exactly what happened, but we have to take it to them when we have that opportunity. We have to keep the momentum, and we weren't able to do that."

The Kings are 8-1-1 in their last 10 for a reason, and they showed it by taking the lead again for good on O'Donnell's goal with five minutes to play.

Edmonton pressed with the net empty, but couldn't find the equalizer on a night when Kings goalie Jonathan Quick turned most of their hands to stone.

"We had some prime scoring chances that we couldn't finish," said Penner.

"I had quite a few more than I usually get and those have got to go in."

ROBERT.TYCHKOWSKI@SUNMEDIA.CA


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