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Wild 5, Oilers 3

The SportsXchange

EDMONTON, Alberta -- A day after firing general manager Steve Tambellini and replacing him with Craig MacTavish, the Edmonton Oilers responded with their sixth straight defeat, a hapless and lifeless 5-3 loss to the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday night.

Instead of rallying, or at least trying to save face, the Oilers looked as bad as they have all season.

They fell behind early again, this time 1:01 after the opening faceoff when former Oiler Kyle Brodziak jumped on a Sam Gagner giveaway and scored on goalie Devan Dubnyk.

It marked the third time in the past five games that Edmonton gave up a goal in the first 90 seconds of the first period. Calgary went up 1-0 after just 26 seconds in the last game and three games before that the Los Angeles Kings drew first blood at 1:28.

The Oilers tied it 15 minutes later when a puck got caught up in the sweater of Minnestoa defenseman Brett Clark and then squirted out to rookie Nail Yakupov, who put it in the back the Wild net before anyone knew what happened. It was Yakupov's ninth point in the past 10 games, making him Edmonton's leading scorer during that span.

It was all downhill from there, though, as far as the Oilers were concerned. The Wild went ahead 2-1 on a point shot from Clayton Stoner 2:56 into the second period and took a 3-1 lead when Mikael Granlund was left alone in the slot to bury a rebound at 6:23.

The Oilers struggled to generate much of anything through 40 minutes, putting just 13 shots on goal.

The Wild piled on in the third, with goals from Brodziak and Zach Parise.

The Oilers, as they often do, launched a late rally with goals from Shawn Horcoff and Magnus Paajarvi to make the game look closer than it was.

NOTES: Boston-born Oilers defenseman Ryan Whitney had close friends who finished the Boston Marathon moments before the explosions Monday. They weren't injured. "His dad was standing right under those flags with his mother. It was crazy how lucky they got," Whitney said. "It was just a really sad day." ... Right winger Jordan Eberle missed the morning skate to attend a funeral but was back in time for the game. ... Forward Pierre-Marc Bouchard has 41 points in 46 games against Edmonton, his highest total against any team. ... Tuesday was Taylor Hall's first against Minnesota since sidelining Cal Clutterbuck for six games with a knee on Feb. 21 ... The Wild are 11-2 in their past 13 in Edmonton. Their 17 victories in Edmonton are the most in any road arena ... Wild goalie Nick Backstrom is 24-3-1 vs. the Oilers with a 1.79 goals-against average and .933 save percentage,
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