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Oilers punch Predators in the mouth

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Tom Gilbert, Taylor Hall, Pekka Rinne, Ryan Suter

Edmonton Oilers’ Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (93), Tom Gilbert (77), and Taylor Hall (4) celebrate a goal by teammate Shawn Horcoff, obscured against the Nashville Predators in the first period of an NHL hockey game Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2011, in Nashville, Tenn. On the ice for the Predators are goalie Pekka Rinne (35), of Finland, and defenseman Ryan Suter (20). The Oilers beat the Predators 6-2. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)


One game doesn’t erase the possibility that the Edmonton Oilers might be vulnerable to violence, but they absolutely pummeled the Nashville Predators tonight 6-2.

It’s kind of tough to beat up someone who’s blowing you out - at least it was in this case. The Oilers surged to a 3-0 lead that booted Pekka Rinne (and his soon-to-be ridiculous contract) out of Nashville’s net through the first period. The only fight occurred between Sam Gagner and Matt Halischuk of all players. Perhaps the most telling stat is that Edmonton fired out the gate with a 13-3 shot advantage in the first period, which allowed them to build up a sufficient lead once Nashville responded. (The Predators had an 18-7 advantage in the second.)

After reeling off two nice wins (one against Washington, one against Toronto) to start their four-game homestand, the Predators have dropped a game to two seemingly flawed teams in Columbus and Edmonton. It’s certainly not time to panic in Nashville, but this duo of losses cannot sit well with Barry Trotz.

Tom Renney should be a very happy coach tonight, though.