Ex-Bolt Khabibulin Shines as Oilers Beat Lightning

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Late in the second, Pavel Kubina boarded Oilers’ forward Linus Omark, which prompted Penner to engage Kubina in a fight.  Edmonton would end up with a power play with the extra minor going to Kubina for boarding.

On the ensuing man advantage, Edmonton defenseman Ryan Whitney from the left circle beat Ellis to the glove side, but the puck hit the post. Moments later, Omark cut to the slot and put a shot on Ellis, and Tom Gilbert backhanded the rebound high over Ellis to give the Oilers the lead.

Simon Gagne had a great chance late in the period, but his backhander hit the crossbar and stayed out.

With time running out, Hall had a chance at a breakaway, but the clock expired as he hit the Lightning blue line.

The third period was all Tampa Bay.

Midway through the third, the Lightning held an 11-1 shots on goal advantage, but could not get the equalizer past Khabibulin.

PHILADELPHIA - NOVEMBER 18: Steven Stamkos of the Tampa Bay Lightning skates against the Philadelphia Flyers at the Wells Fargo Center on November 18, 2010 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Lightning defeated the Flyers 8-7. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

But at 11:33, that all changed.  Martin St. Louis carried the puck down into the right wing corner and swung a pass to the right circle.  Stamkos was there and this time made no mistake, snapping a shot past Khabibulin to knot the game at 3-3.

It was Stamkos’ 22nd of the year, and the marker snapped a six-game stretch that saw him fail to score a goal.

The Bolts would go on to outshoot the Oilers by a count of 17-1 in the third.  Khabibulin had to come up with some big saves, especially late in regulation on St. Louis.

Edmonton would dominate most of the overtime and would outshoot the Lightning 6-3, and Ellis would be called upon to make several good saves.

Tampa Bay would get a power play of their own with 1:00 left in overtime as the Oilers were caught with too many men on the ice, but nothing would come out of the man advantage.  The game headed to a shootout.

Edmonton possesses some very talented youngsters, and they would have a chance to show their skills in the shootout.

Jordan Eberle, Hall, and Omark would be the three shooters for the Oilers, while Marc Pouliot, Stamkos and St. Louis would counter for the Bolts.

Eberle was the first shooter, and he would make his presence known.  Moving in on Ellis with a good amount of speed, Eberle faked to the backhand and got Ellis moving right, then juked back to the forehand.  He was able to deposit the puck into the open corner past Ellis’ pad, and Edmonton took the quick 1-0 shootout lead.

Pouliot moved in on Khabibulin and attempted a backhander, but Khabib said no.

Hall moved in on Ellis and tried to slide a backhander through the five-hole, but the Tampa goalie was able to get the puck with his left pad and keep it out of the net.

Stamkos skated straight towards Khabibulin, wound up and blasted a slap shot.  But Khabibulin snagged it with his glove, and the fate of the game rested on the stick of the 23-year-old Omark.

The Swede was playing in his first NHL game and had drawn an assist on Gilbert’s second period power play goal.  And now he had a chance to be a hero in front of the home fans.

It was obvious that he was very anxious to take his shot, because he started skating in for his attempt before given the signal by the official, who promptly skated over and shielded the puck as Omark skated by, looking puzzled.

Omark went well back into his own end to make sure that he didn’t commit a second false start.  This time when given the go ahead, he showed some flash and dazzle.

After he picked up the puck he proceeded to do a full 360 degree spin, then pick up speed towards Ellis.  He ripped a shot between Ellis’ pads, and the Oilers had pulled out the shootout, 2-0.

 

(VIDEO courtesy of NHL.com)

Even though it was their second straight loss on the West coast trip, the Lightning did pick up a point.

Bolts Bits:  On the strength of the 17-1 shot advantage in the third period, the Lightning outshot the Oilers 41-23…Tampa Bay finished the night 1-5 on the powerplay, while Edmonton was 2-3…the Oilers played a much more physical game than the Bolts, as the final hits count was 31-12 in favor of Edmonton…the line of Hall-Moore-Bergenheim was the best for Tampa on the night.  Hall finished with a game high six shots, while Bergenheim and Stamkos registered five apiece…Brett Clark led all players with five shots blocked.

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Topics: Bolts, Dan Ellis, Edmonton Oilers, Jordan Eberle, Linus Omark, Martin St Louis, National Hockey League, NHL, Ryan Malone, Simon Gagne, Steven Stamkos, Tampa Bay Lightning, Taylor Hall, Victor Hedman

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