Final

Series (Game 1 of 4)

Series tied 2-2

Game 1: Monday, October 23rd
Coyotes2Final
Oilers5
Game 2: Thursday, October 26th
Oilers2Final
Coyotes6
Game 3: Thursday, December 21st
Oilers3Final
Coyotes2
Game 4: Tuesday, February 27th
Coyotes3Final
Oilers0

Coyotes 2

(2-7-0, 4 pts)

Oilers 5

(6-2-0, 12 pts)

9:00 PM ET, October 23, 2006

Rexall Place, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

1 2 3 T
ARI 0 2 02
EDM 2 1 25

P. Sykora (Oilers - RW): Goals: 1, Assists: 3

A. Hemsky (Oilers - RW): Goals: 1, Assists: 2

P. Thoresen (Oilers - C): Goals: 0, Assists: 3

Sykora (4 points) helps Oilers stay unbeaten at home

EDMONTON, Alberta (AP)-- Following a dominant performance Monday night, the Edmonton Oilers' new line of Ales Hemsky, Petr Sykora and Patrick Thoresen has likely earned an extended run.

Elias Says
Edmonton Oilers
The Oilers' victory over the Coyotes at Rexall Place gave Edmonton five wins in five home games this season. The Oilers have started a season with wins in their first five home games two previous times in franchise history, in October 1986 and October 1985.

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Sykora had a goal and three assists, Hemsky and Thoresen chipped in three-point performances and the Oilers downed the slumping Phoenix Coyotes 5-2.

Shawn Horcoff and Jarrett Stoll each added their first goal of the season for the Oilers (6-2-0).

Sykora said the line, which was retooled to give Norwegian rookie Thoresen a more prominent role after a strong start, is starting to mesh.

"Everybody is skating and making plays and looking for each other out there and that is why we have had success. It's why the puck is going in for us," said Sykora, who leads the Oilers with 13 points. "Right now we are getting our chances and we are scoring on them. Patrick is making some great plays out there right now."

Edmonton head coach Craig MacTavish also praised Thoresen, who doubled his season point total and has looked good since replacing Raffi Torres on the line.

"I was super impressed with him in camp and he just continues to get more impressive," said MacTavish. "I don't know that we have a player that thinks the game positionally as well he does right now. He checks and all those things. He thinks the game well offensively and has really meshed in with [Hemsky], who was spectacular tonight, as was [Sykora]."

Thoresen, just the fifth player from Norway to play in the NHL, is just glad to be getting a shot.

"It's such a bonus for me to create points right now," he said. "Every time I am out there I'm just trying to work hard and to do my job on the line. I'm just trying to work hard to make room for Hemsky and Sykora because they are two of the most skilled guys in the league."

Jeremy Roenick and Mike Comrie scored for the Coyotes (2-7-0), who have lost six of their last seven and are off to their worst start since moving to Phoenix from Winnipeg for the 1996-97 season.

"We need to ... win, however we do it," said Roenick. "We're not going to do it sitting in the penalty box all night. We're the most undisciplined team in the league and it has to stop. It's embarrassing.

"We're killing our goaltenders with barrages of shots because we are killing penalties all ... night. We keep doing the same thing."

The Oilers jumped out to a 2-0 start 12 minutes into the first period, scoring two goals in 59 seconds.

Torres beat Phoenix goaltender Curtis Joseph with an easy tap-in after a perfect cross-ice pass from Thoresen. A minute later, and with the Oilers on the power play, Stoll ripped a slap shot from the point past Joseph for his first goal of the season.

Early in the second period Horcoff blasted in a slap shot off the post to give Edmonton a 3-0 lead.

Phoenix finally put one past Oilers goaltender Dwayne Roloson four minutes later as Ladislav Nagy hit Roenick with a pass as he charged the net. Roenick's first of the year broke a string of 147:50 without a goal for the Coyotes.

The Coyotes pulled within one on a second-period power play when Comrie batted a puck through Roloson's legs during a scramble in front of the net.

Edmonton went up 4-2 in the third when Sykora blasted his sixth goal past Joseph.

Sykora got his fourth point of the night on another Oiler power play, although it was Hemsky that did the work, circling around at the point before wristing a shot over Joseph's shoulder for the game's final score.

Game notes


The Coyotes take on the Flames in Calgary on Tuesday night, while Edmonton starts a two-game road trip at Anaheim on Wednesday. ... Former Oiler Georges Laraque returned to the Coyotes lineup after missing one game as a healthy scratch. In his seven previous starts this season he was minus-5 with zero points.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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