Published January 13, 2015
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Edmonton Oilers will try to dig themselves out of an early-season hole on Saturday night as they begin a six-game road trip with a meeting against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
The Oilers have lost three of four ahead of their longest road trip of the season that will see the club out east for six games. They picked up a home shootout win over New Jersey on Monday, but fell in defeat 4-1 against Montreal on Thursday.
Edmonton scored first, with Ryan Smyth tipping home a Taylor Hall pass for a power-play marker at 2:28 of the second, but it was all Canadiens from there.
"We didn't have any good chances and you have to give them credit because they kept us to the outside," said Smyth.
Devan Dubnyk gave up three goals on 26 shots in the loss.
"I thought we played a good game, probably the most solid game that we've played so far. Improvement is nice, but not good enough yet. It's not good enough if you end up losing the game," said Oilers head coach Dallas Eakins.
Edmonton has lost plenty of games in Toronto, where it has just three victories in its last 13 trips dating back to 1996. The Maple Leafs have won three straight and seven of the last 10 encounters overall.
Toronto won each of its first three games of the season before a one-goal setback to Colorado earlier this week. The Leafs responded, though, with a 4-0 blanking of the Nashville Predators on Thursday behind 36 saves by Jonathan Bernier.
Bernier's first shutout of the season and seventh of his career improved him to 3-1-0 with a 0.85 goals against average and .974 save percentage in four games with the Maple Leafs this season, three of those starts. He was acquired in a trade with the Los Angeles Kings this past offseason.
"He stood tall in the net and he didn't give up a lot of second opportunities," Toronto head coach Randy Carlyle said. "The puck seemed to hit him in the middle of the chest and he controlled a lot of the rebounds."
Phil Kessel had a goal and two assists, while James van Riemsdyk, Tyler Bozak and Joffrey Lupul added goals.
Bernier has won both of his career games versus the Oilers, posting a 1.00 GAA and .966 save percentage. Dubnyk is 0-1-0 with a 4.63 GAA in two games versus the Leafs, yielding six goals on 49 shots.