Nugent-Hopkins scores shootout winner as Oilers edge Coyotes

Jordan Eberle scored twice and hit 300 points in his career as the Oilers beat the Coyotes 4-3 after a shootout.

EDMONTON — The Edmonton Oilers are hoping a new year means renewed life in the playoff hunt.

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins scored the shootout winner and Jordan Eberle scored twice in regulation as the Oilers snapped a four-game losing skid with a 4-3 victory over the Arizona Coyotes on Saturday.

“After Christmas, we didn’t take advantage of the games against teams in our division,” Nugent-Hopkins said. “It was great to see us stick with it after getting down by a goal in the third. We really wanted to come back and get that one and played with some desperation tonight.”

Oilers goalie Cam Talbot, who stopped two of three attempts in the shootout, said the team is hoping a win can get them going in the new year.

``We talked about that after our last game, to let the end of December go and to focus on a new day, a new year here,'' he said. ``I think we got off to a good start tonight.''

Taylor Hall also scored for the Oilers (16-21-3), who have won eight of their last 10 games at home.

Steve Downie, Brad Richardson and Anthony Duclair replied for the Coyotes (18-16-4), who have lost two of their last three outings.

``It was a tight game, tight game,'' said Arizona head coach Dave Tippett. ``We missed an assignment in our own end and gave them a chance to tie it up, and then it was a tight game. Some chances here and there. Thirteen seconds left we had a real good chance. But you get to the shootout, anything can happen.''

Arizona got on the board seven minutes into the opening period as Jordan Martinook sent a pass through a defender's legs from behind the net to Downie, who beat Talbot five-hole.

Edmonton tied it up a minute later as Leon Draisaitl sent a no-look backhand feed in front to Hall, who redirected it past Coyotes starter Louis Domingue for his 16th of the season.

The Oilers went up 2-1 on the power play with eight minutes left in the first as Mark Letestu found Eberle in a scramble in front and he picked the top corner.

Arizona tied the game with five-and-a-half minutes to play in the second when Richardson took a couple of whacks at the puck in the blue paint and eventually got one under Talbot.

The Coyotes made it 3-2 six minutes into the third as Max Domi made a beautiful pass on a two-on-one to allow Duclair to score his 11th of the season.

Edmonton tied the game again with six minutes left in the third. Eberle scored his second of the game on a backhander, recording his 300th career NHL point in the process.

The Oilers had the best chances in overtime, including a post hit by Nugent-Hopkins.

Domingue ended up with 38 saves in the loss.

Both teams return to the ice on Monday as the Coyotes travel to Vancouver and the Oilers host Carolina.

NOTES: The Coyotes defeated the Oilers 4-1 in their only previous meeting this season. Arizona swept the five-game series last season and came into the game with an 11-1 record in their previous 12 contests against Edmonton. ... The Oilers were still without Connor McDavid (collarbone), Nail Yakupov (ankle), Oscar Klefbom (finger), Andrew Ference (undisclosed) and Iiro Pakarinen (upper body)... Out for the Coyotes were goalie Mike Smith (lower body), Joe Vitale (face), Martin Hanzal (upper body) and Boyd Gordon (head)... Arizona winger John Scott, who was voted captain for the Pacific Division at the All-Star game on Saturday despite only recording an assist in 11 games, was a healthy scratch.