CALGARY, Alberta (AP) — Taylor Hall had a goal and four assists in helping the Edmonton Oilers win their fifth straight with an 8-2 rout of the reeling Calgary Flames on Wednesday night.
It wasn’t that long ago when the Flames dominated the provincial rivalry having won 16 of 17 games.
But Edmonton has been the better team lately, winning four of the last five including both ends of the recent home-and-home series.
With 12 games to go, Edmonton sits eighth in the West, one point up on the St. Louis Blues and the Nashville Predators. The Columbus Blue Jackets are two points back.
The Oilers are looking to make their first postseason appearance since 2006, when they lost to the Carolina Hurricanes in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals.
Jordan Eberle and Nail Yakupov scored two goals apiece, and Sam Gagner, Ryan Whitney and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins added a goal each for Edmonton.
The Oilers, enjoying their longest winning streak since winning six in a row Oct. 22-Nov. 3, 2011, kicked off a four-game road trip that continues Thursday night in Vancouver.
Matt Stajan had both goals for Calgary. The Flames have lost seven of their last nine to remain second from the bottom in the West and 28th overall. Winless in its last 11 road games, Calgary begins a three-game road trip Friday in San Jose.
Tied 2-2 after one period, Edmonton seized control of the game in the second scoring three power-play goals in a span of just over six minutes.
Yakupov gave the Oilers the lead at 3:34, finding open space in the slot and one-timing Gagner’s pass behind Joey MacDonald. It was his eighth goal of the season and second in as many games after going 16 games without a goal.
Hall followed at 7:39 with his fifth goal in his last three games and Nugent-Hopkins capped the barrage at 9:51, converting Hall’s setup for his third goal of the season.
Edmonton’s fifth ranked power play finished 3-for-5 on the night while Calgary was 0 for 1.
Eberle, Hall and Nugent-Hopkins have combined for 32 points during Edmonton’s winning streak.
Winners of eight of their last nine games at home, the Flames got off to a fast start by grabbing a 2-0 lead less than six minutes into the game on Stajan’s first goals in 19 games.
Edmonton quickly tied it.
Gagner got the Oilers on the board at 9:27 when Dan Petry’s shot deflected in off his skate. At 12:59, Whitney pinched in from the blue-line and buried Hall’s pass behind MacDonald.
MacDonald finished with 31 saves for the Flames, who gave Miikka Kiprusoff the night off after several days of having his name mentioned in trade rumors. Earlier in the day, he said he opted to stay in Calgary rather than accept a trade.
After getting beaten on two of the first three shots he faced, Devan Dubynk settled in for the Oilers, finishing the night with 19 saves.
NOTES: New Oilers forward Jerred Smithson, acquired earlier in the day from Florida, did not play. He will wear jersey No. 25. Also not in the line-up was D Mark Fistric ... The first period fight between Mike Brown and Steve Begin was the first fight in the rivalry in 12 games, dating to Oct 26, 2010 ... Calgary inserted C Roman Horak into the lineup after being recalled earlier in the day from Abbotsford. ... With D Derek Smith (lower body) out indefinitely, Anton Babchuk played for the first time since Feb. 17. He had been a healthy scratch 21 games in a row.