EDMONTON -- Nothing like a W to go with the R and R.
The St. Louis Blues thanked their coaches and management for a three-day retreat in the mountains by responding with a 3-0 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday night at Rexall Place.
The Blues were coming off a loss in Vancouver, but after a three-day break between games, which they spent at the mountain resort of Whistler, British Columbia, they're back on track.
"We hadn't had that great window of time on the road to spend with each other, really get to build some chemistry off the ice," said captain David Backes, adding the retreat in the Canadian Rockies between games helped recharge their batteries and sharpen their focus.
"It's mostly the team that was together last year but we wanted to rekindle that. We got to spend some great times up there. We're excited to show that we have a new found commitment to each other."
A conference finalist last season, where they lost to the eventual Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings, the Blues aim to take things a step or two further this year. After stumbling a little during the middle of their season, they've won six of their last eight games and thoroughly dominated the Oilers on Saturday night
"We're doing everything we can to get that mojo back," said Backes. "It's a work in progress, never complete, but I think we're doing all the right things. Concentrating on the process of doing things the right way. We have to stick to our blue collar game, getting pucks deep, getting on the forecheck and making teams work for everything they get. When we play that game, I like our chances."
Chris Stewart's goal 3:20 into the first period stood up for 40 minutes before a two-goal outburst in the third period put the Oilers out of their misery.
The smaller, younger Oilers couldn't generate much of anything against the much bigger Blues' and their grind 'em out defensive style.
Edmonton had just four shots in the first period, marking the fifth time in the last eight periods they've been held to six or less. They had one shot in the first 10 minutes of the second period and didn't get their 10th of the game until the 38-minute mark.
The Oilers were booed off their own ice at the end of the game.
"Unacceptable for the kind of team we want to be," said head coach Ralph Krueger. "We need to react to this as quick as possible by winning the next game."
"They played well, but we were out of sync all night," added Oilers captain Shawn Horcoff. "We really didn't come in and play any sort of game that we were accustomed to playing in the last five. I'm not sure why. It's hard for us to just give up games like that."
The Oilers had points in nine of their last 13, but were losing momentum fast -- 1-0-2 in their last three after blowing two-goal third period leads at home to Detroit and San Jose.
"We really fought hard to get ourselves back in a good spot, now it seems like we're reeling a little bit," said Edmonton winger Taylor Hall. "Including the last period against San Jose, that's four periods that we're not really proud of. We have to right the ship pretty quick."
St. Louis scored on its fourth shot of the game and led 1-0 until Alex Steen and TJ Oshie put it out of reach in the third.
NOTES: Oilers center Ryan Nugent-Hopkins missed his second game in a row because of illness and might not join the team on its two-game trip to Nashville and St. Louis. He has a strep infection and might not be game ready in time for Monday. Also, they're not sure if they want him around the team if he's contagious. ... Blues defenseman Wade Redden, who was minus-7 in his first eight games after being signed by the Blues, has gone plus-6 in the last 11 games. ... Chris Stewart has multiple points in three of his last five games for a total of eight points. March remains the most productive month of his career. He has 53 points in 64 career games in March. The Blues are 11-1-1 in their last 12 games against the Oilers. They've only lost once in regulation in their last eight visits (5-1-2)