EDMONTON, Alberta -- The New Jersey Devils don't come to Rexall Place often, which is great news as far as they are concerned.
The way the roof fell in on them in a 5-4 shootout loss Monday night, they won't want to come back for a long time.
After compiling what looked like an insurmountable 3-0 lead through 40 minutes, the Devils saw all their work come crashing down in an eight-minute Oilers flurry.
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, in his first game back after shoulder surgery last spring, broke the shutout with a power-play goal at 5:43 of the third period. Andrew Ference cut New Jersey's lead to 3-2 on a screened shot from the point at 9:28. David Perron tied it at 11:47, and Taylor Hall put Edmonton ahead 4-3 at 13:30.
All four Oilers scored their first goal of the season.
In a fitting conclusion to a wild third period, Devils center Patrik Elias scored short-handed with 53 seconds left to force overtime and then the shootout.
Jordan Eberle and Perron scored for Edmonton in the tiebreaker. New Jersey's Damien Brunner shot wide in the first round of the shootout, and Jason LaBarbera stopped a shot from Ryane Clowe to seal the win.
The goaltending battle didn't start out well for Edmonton (1-2-0). Oilers coach Dallas Eakins gave LaBarbera the start after Devan Dubnyk allowed 10 goals on 59 shots, including two from just inside the blue line, while the team lost its first two games of the season.
It was deflating for the Oilers bench when LaBarbera let in a goal on the first shot he faced, a wrister from Jaromir Jagr just 2:59 into the first period.
After Jordan Eberle took an offensive-zone hooking penalty, the Devils went up 2-0 on Brunner's wrist shot from the same spot at 8:01. New Jersey (0-1-2) had two goals on five shots.
Edmonton didn't get its first shot until 12:02 of the opening period. The Oilers settled down after that, applying decent pressure and almost scoring on a power play, but trailed 2-0 at the first intermission.
Michael Ryder made it 3-0 with a short-handed goal early in the third.
LaBarbera stopped 21 of 25 shots in regulation and overtime. Devils goalie Martin Brodeur finished with 23 saves.
NOTES: The Oilers made LW Ryan Smyth a healthy scratch as coach Dallas Eakins kept his promise to keep players accountable, regardless of their experience, history or contract size. ... With the return of Nugent-Hopkins, Taylor Hall moved from center to his usual spot on the left wing. ... LW Jesse Joensuu, one of Edmonton's most consistent forwards in the first two games, sat out the third with back spasms. ... The Devils fell to 6-1-2 in games at Edmonton. ... Jagr, with 1,689 points, and Elias, with 931, are the NHL's first- and eighth-leading scorers among active players. ... Jagr needs one more game-winning goal to move into first place on the NHL's all-time list. He is tied with Phil Esposito with 118.