NHL News: Oilers in rare air going for seventh straight win in facing Blue Jackets

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It’s been more than 20 years since the Edmonton Oilers last won seven straight games in a season.

Considering how well the Oilers have fared against the Columbus Blue Jackets at home all-time, they appear in good position to accomplish that feat again when the teams meet Wednesday night.

Following a 1-3-1 stretch from Dec. 31-Jan. 9, Edmonton has won a season-high six in a row and has outscored opponents 31-13 in the process. The Oilers most recently won seven consecutive games during their club-record, nine-game winning streak in the 2000-01 season.

“We’re getting contributions from everybody, whether it’s on the score sheet or playing physical, blocking a shot, or being solid defensively,” said Edmonton superstar Connor McDavid, who has recorded 16 of his NHL-leading 88 points during his current 10-game point streak.

“I think we’re getting contributions up and down the lineup — and then a little maturity.”

While McDavid and Leon Draisaitl continue to show off their offensive dominance for the Oilers, perhaps what’s most impressive is eighth-year winger Zach Hyman’s career highs of 32 assists and 56 points through 47 games this season. Following his second four-point night of the season during Saturday’s 4-2 victory at Vancouver, Hyman has four goals with eight assists in his last five contests.

“He’s effort personified,” Oilers coach Jay Woodcroft said of Hyman.

“We’re proud that, that he’s finding his stride in Edmonton. I think he makes us a better team.”

Hyman has just two goals in nine career games versus Columbus, but McDavid has recorded six with 17 assists in 12 meetings with the Blue Jackets, who are 8-21-2 all-time at Edmonton. They’ve been outscored 13-4 during their current three-game losing streak there.

Last in the Eastern Conference with 14 wins and 31 points, Columbus is 4-15-1 in its last 20 games entering this contest. The Blue Jackets did manage to earn a point with Monday’s 4-3 overtime loss at Calgary.

“We’re a really young group, and the guys fought hard (at Calgary),” said Columbus star Johnny Gaudreau, who had two assists but missed a penalty shot in the first game against his former Flames club.

“I was really proud of (the team). Hopefully, these are games your team kind of builds around to keep pushing and keep getting better every single day.”

The Blue Jackets rank near the bottom of the NHL in averaging 2.57 goals, but Gaudreau leads the team with 46 points. He has posted five in the last three games and has 16 goals with 20 assists in 41 regular-season contests against the Oilers.

Patrik Laine has recorded two goals with four assists in the last three games for Columbus, which is just 3-15-2 on the road this season. Teammate Joonas Korpisalo (3.30 goals-against average) made a career-high 45 saves versus Calgary but has lost his last three road starts. The Blue Jackets’ Elvis Merzlikins has allowed 17 goals in his last four overall starts.

Edmonton’s Stuart Skinner stopped 27 of 29 shots versus Vancouver over the weekend, but has a 3.87 goals-against average during his current 0-3-2 home rut. Meanwhile, teammate Jack Campbell has a 2.20 GAA during his five-game winning streak.

–Field Level Media

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