Oilers win 5-4 in shootout

Edmonton Oilers Sam Gagner scores on Detroit Redwings Joey MacDonald during overtime shootout NHL...

Edmonton Oilers Sam Gagner scores on Detroit Redwings Joey MacDonald during overtime shootout NHL action at Rexall place in Edmonton, Alberta on Saturday, February 4, 2012. (AMBER BRACKEN//QMI AGENCY)

Derek Van Diest, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 7:57 PM ET

Technically, Sam Gagner is striding on water.

And perhaps now that Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow is no longer in need of divine intervention, the Edmonton Oilers forward is getting a little help from above.

That's one way explain the run Gagner is currently on collecting another three points and adding a shootout goal Saturday night in a 5-4 win over the Detroit Red Wings.

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins scored the shootout winner, while Devan Dubnyk turned away five of the six Red Wing to collect his third consecutive win.

"My first chance was a quality one and I was able to put it in," said Gagner. "Even after that, I just put the puck on net and (Jordan) Eberle makes a great play and gets a goal off of it.

"After that, the tip-in goal, I just wanted to get to the net and create as much as I can around there. It feels good to contribute to wins. There is still a long way to go in the season, I just want to find a way to keep it going."

Todd Bertuzzi's third-period performance nearly upstaged Gagner, who scored a pair of goals and added an assist as he ran up his consecutive points total, in on 11 straight goals for the Oilers, which is a team record.

Having tied another team record with eight points Thursday night in a win over the Chicago Blackhawks, Gagner picked up right where he left off, scoring the Oilers opening goal of the night, then picking up an assists on Eberle's marker, before rounding out the frame tipping a Ryan Smyth shot past Wings goaltender Ty Conklin with time running out in the period.

"I can't believe it," said Oilers head coach Tom Renney of Gagner's streak. "It's just nutty. I guess we'll keep playing him."

Gagner's late goal came in response to the Wings opening marker as Valtteri Filppula scored after fanning on a shot from the slot, which hit Ryan Whitney's skate an eluded Dubnyk, who was making his fifth-consecutive start for the Oilers.

One could say Gagner was in on that goal as well, having turned over the puck to Filppula in the slot.

The Oilers went into the contest on a two-game winning streak and having won three of their previous four, with a shootout loss sandwiched in between.

The game got physical midway through the first period when Niklas Kronwall stepped into the Ales Hemsky along the boards, sending the Oilers winger sprawling.

Hemsky left the game for the remainder of the period to spend some time in the "Quiet room," but did return in the second.

The Oilers meanwhile, trying to exact their pound of flesh, were forced to kill off a two-man advantage as Corey Potter was assessed a double-minor for jumping Kronwall after then hit. Shortly into the Potter's penalty, Ladislav Smid buried Henrik Zetterberg into the boards, sending a message to the Wings, their stars were fair game as well.

Things remained heated in the second, although neither team could add to the scoreboard.

Just over two minutes into the third, Bertuzzi cut into the Oilers lead, burying his own rebound after being set up by Zetterberg in front.

Drew Miller then tied the game three and-a-half minutes later, finishing off a three-way passing play in front of Dubnyk.

Bertuzzi put the Wings ahead, getting past Andy Sutton and firing a shot over the shoulder of Dubnyk.

The Oilers sent the game into overtime as Eberle scored with 39 seconds left in the period, getting hold of a puck in front and sliding it past Joey MacDonald, who had come in to replace Conklin at the start of the second.

"We played a really strong 40 minutes and in the third period we were a little hesitant and just tried to kill the clock," said Eberle. "That can be fatal. They were able to get three and take the lead, but we were able to find another one, then win the game and that's all the matters in the end."

derek.vandiest@sunmedia.ca

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