Series (Game 3 of 4)

Series tied 2-2

Game 1: Thursday, October 28th
Blue Jackets3
Game 2: Thursday, December 16th
Blue Jackets3Final
Game 3: Saturday, February 5th
Blue Jackets4
Game 4: Thursday, March 3rd
Blue Jackets2Final

Oilers 3

(15-29-8, 38 pts)

Blue Jackets 4

(25-22-5, 55 pts)

Coverage: CBC

7:00 PM ET, February 5, 2011

Nationwide Arena, Columbus, Ohio

1 2 3 T
EDM 2 0 13
CBJ 1 1 24

R. Umberger (Blue Jackets - LW): Goals: 2, Assists: 2

K. Huselius (Blue Jackets - LW): Goals: 2, Assists: 1

K. Russell (Blue Jackets - D): Goals: 0, Assists: 2

Oilers-Blue Jackets Preview


Nationwide Arena will forever be a memorable place for Edmonton's Taylor Hall.

Returning to the site where he scored his first NHL goal, Hall will try to help the Oilers snap a three-game skid in Columbus where they'll meet the Blue Jackets on Saturday night in a matchup of the bottom two teams in the Western Conference.

Hall, taken first in June's entry draft, had one assist in his first seven NHL games before facing Columbus on Oct. 28. After drawing another assist early in the game, he tied the score at 2 midway through the third period before the Blue Jackets won 3-2 in a shootout.

"Definitely not the prettiest goal of my life, but I'll take it for sure," Hall said after the game. "I definitely wanted to score ... and I had a feeling before the game that this was going to be the night."

The 19-year-old forward notched his 17th goal Friday, but Edmonton fell 5-3 to St. Louis in the opener of a three-game road trip. With 32 points, Hall is third among rookies in scoring behind San Jose's Logan Couture and Carolina's Jeff Skinner.

Edmonton (15-28-8), which has lost three in a row overall and nine of 11 on the road, needs one victory away from home to match last season's total (9). However, the Oilers haven't won in Ohio's capital since Nov. 18, 2008, with two of the three losses coming in tiebreakers.

Devan Dubnyk stopped 21 St. Louis shots Friday in what he called "a weird game." If Nikolai Khabibulin gets the call against the Blue Jackets, though, he'll be trying to snap a 12-game losing streak that started after making 37 saves in a 6-3 win over Columbus on Dec. 16.

Khabibulin -- 8-23-2 with a 3.44 goals-against average this season -- has alternated wins and losses over his last eight games in Columbus. He fell 3-2 in a shootout on Nov. 16, 2009.

The Blue Jackets (24-22-5) hope momentum generated from a shutout win on the road over one of the NHL's elite teams will help them avoid a third straight loss at home. Steve Mason made 34 saves for his second whitewash this season, and Antoine Vermette had a goal and assist Friday in a 3-0 win over Central Division-leading Detroit.

"He looked big and he looked comfortable," Columbus first-year coach Scott Arniel said of Mason, the 2009 Calder Trophy winner who had given up a total of eight goals in consecutive home losses to Anaheim on Jan. 25 and Chicago on Tuesday.

Mason is 3-0-0 with a 2.92 GAA in his career at home versus Edmonton, but surrendered all six goals over two periods before being pulled in the loss to the Oilers in December.

Kristian Huselius recorded his second career hat trick in that game, but has just nine goals in 28 games after averaging 22 in his first eight seasons. He was scratched against the Red Wings and his status for this game isn't immediately known.

Columbus is 12th in the West with 137 goals scored while Edmonton has given up a league-worst 176 tallies.