EDMONTON, Alberta (AP)—The Edmonton Oilers took advantage of some lucky breaks Saturday night.
Red Wings forward Pavel Datsyuk scored on a brilliant individual effort to tie the score 1-1 at 11:24 of the third.
Sykora beat Detroit goalie Dominik Hasek stick-side on a breakaway to put the Oilers back ahead at 13:39.
“It was kind of a broken play,” said Sykora, who scored his fifth of the season. “I came in late from their zone. I kind of got caught behind which is not good great late in the third. But it worked out pretty well. “
Then, Lupul went in alone 2 minutes later to seal the win for the Oilers, who have won five of seven to start the season.
“We were really opportunistic,” Oilers head coach Craig MacTavish. “It was a great pass from Ladislav Smid to (Sykora) and Petr doesn’t make too many mistakes when he gets in that spot.
“And the same with (Lupul’s) goal. That was a great hang time pass from (Daniel Tjarnqvist) and Joffrey made no mistake.”
The Red Wings lost the final three games of their four-game road trip, and head coach Mike Babcock isn’t happy with his team’s recent performance.
“The frustration level is high,” he said. “The one thing about frustration though is it does you absolutely no good. We have to find a way to dig in and stick together and to solve our problems.
“In our last three games we have scored three goals and you can’t win in the National Hockey League getting three goals in three games.”
Hasek wished he could have another chance at Sykora’s goal.
“He found a small hole,” he said. “He has a quick shot, a quick release. Still you feel you could make that save.”
It was the first meeting between the two clubs since the eighth-seeded Oilers knocked the Wings out in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs last season.
The game went scoreless through a sloppy first period, the best opportunity belonging to the Red Wings when Robert Lang missed an open net on a power play with 5 minutes remaining.
The Oilers got on the board 2:50 into the second when defenseman Steve Staios’ hard shot from the point caromed off a Red Wings players and slipped by Hasek.
Edmonton had the bulk of the quality chances for the remainder of the second, but Hasek was able to shut the door, keeping it a one-goal game entering the third.
Detroit finally spoiled Dwayne Roloson’s shutout bid when Datsyuk deked through the Oilers’ defense to tie the score.
Entering the game, the Oilers were ranked fifth on the penalty kill and 17th on the power play, while the Red Wings were 26th with the man advantage and 28th short-handed. Both teams were 0-for-5 on the power play Saturday, and all the scoring was even strength. … Graham and LuAnn Snyder made their third stop on an RV trip to all 30 NHL cities to raise awareness for the Dan Snyder Memorial Arena to be built in Elmira, Ontario, to honor their son Dan, who was a passenger in teammate Dany Heatley’s Ferrari that crashed on Sept. 29, 2003 in Atlanta. Dan Snyder died of his injuries.