Posted January 03, 2012 on AP on Fox
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Ryan Smyth, Taylor Hall and Andy Sutton scored in the second period and the Edmonton Oilers bounced back from Daniel Carcillo's nasty hit during a chippy 4-3 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday night. Jordan Eberle added two assists for the Oilers, including a perfect backhand pass to Sutton for the tiebreaking score. Ben Eager added an insurance goal in the third period as Edmonton snapped a three-game slide. Jonathan Toews, Andrew Brunette and Jimmy Hayes scored for Chicago, which had won three of four and 10 of 13. The Blackhawks were looking to avenge a 9-2 loss at Edmonton in their previous meeting Nov. 19, but were hurt by Carcillo's costly penalty in the second. Hayes' first career goal in his second game trimmed Edmonton's lead to 4-3 with 3:49 left. The Blackhawks then got a power-play opportunity when Ryan Jones was sent off for goalie interference, but Devan Dubnyk made a couple of big stops to preserve the victory. Dubnyk finished with 39 saves. Corey Crawford had 26 stops for Chicago. The Oilers trailed 1-0 when Carcillo launched Edmonton defenseman Tom Gilbert into the boards 7:23 into the second period, resulting in a major boarding penalty and a game misconduct. Carcillo and Gilbert both went down after the vicious hit and had to be helped off the ice. Smyth tied it just 16 seconds into the 5-minute power play, whacking the puck in from the right post for his 15th goal. Edmonton then caught a break when Hall appeared to knock down Blackhawks defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson with a stick to the face minutes later. Hjalmarsson appeared to be disoriented while he scrambled to find his stick, and Hall skated to his side and beat Crawford to give the Oilers a 2-1 lead with 9 minutes left in the period. Hjalmarsson got a measure of revenge when his slap shot from just inside the blue line was tipped in by Brunette at 12:39, but the Oilers went in front again 4 minutes later. Eberle made a nice move to find a wide-open Sutton, whose shot from right in front of the goal went into the upper left corner for his second goal. Chicago dropped to 14-1-1 when scoring first. It also was the fourth regulation home loss for the Blackhawks this season. The Blackhawks struck first during an evenly played first period. Carcillo stole an Edmonton pass just outside the blue line in the Oilers' end and fed Toews, who slid the puck past a screened Dubnyk for his team-leading 22nd goal at 12:54. Jones had a breakaway opportunity late in the period, but Crawford made a pad save to keep Chicago in front. NOTES: Carcillo appeared to be favoring his left leg when he was helped off the ice in the second. The Oilers said Gilbert had a lower-body injury. ... Edmonton C Ryan Nugent-Hopkins left with an upper-body injury. The No. 1 overall pick in last year's draft, Nugent-Hopkins began the day leading NHL rookies with 35 points (13 goals, 22 assists). ... The Blackhawks signed first-round draft picks Mark McNeil and Phillip Danault, announcing the three-year deals with the 18-year-old centers before the game. McNeil was the 18th selection in last year's NHL entry draft, and Danault was the No. 26 pick. ... Blackhawks D Steve Montador was scratched with an upper-body injury. He had played in every game this season.
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