Red Wings head home after another road loss in Edmonton

Ted Kulfan
The Detroit News
Oilers center Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (93) celebrates after scoring a goal against Red Wings goaltender Jonathan Bernier (45) during the second period on Friday.

The Red Wings are coming home desperately searching for a victory.

They sure didn’t find one in three games in western Canada, ending the three-game trip Friday with a 2-1 loss in Edmonton.

The defeat extended the Wings’ losing streak to four games, after the Wings began the season winning three of four.

BOX SCORE: Oilers 2, Red Wings 1

Mike Green had the Wings' lone goal, while goaltender Jonathan Bernier stopped 35 shots in a busy night of work.

James Neal and Ethan Bear scored for the Oilers. Goaltender Mikko Koskinen had 25 saves for the Oilers, including a big save on Trevor Daley with six minutes left in regulation time and getting help from his post on a Dylan Larkin shot late.

Here are other highlights from Friday's loss:

► Detroit's goal: Green, who had struggled in the defensive zone earlier on this trip, cut Edmonton’s lead to 2-1 at 16:37 of the second period, his first goal of the season. Several puck retrievals kept the Wings in possession of the puck, and ultimately Tyler Bertuzzi, who had one of his better all-around games, found Green in the slot for a shot through former Wings forwards Riley Sheahan and Tomas Jurco.

Athanasiou struggling: He used his speed well, broke away for a couple chances, had a couple nice passes…but Andreas Athanasiou continues to look for his first goal of the season. Maybe he's still slowed by an injury that forced him to miss the first two games of the season, but Athanasiou looks like he still cannot find his preferred gear and might be pressing.  

Solid goaltending: Bernier kept the Wings close the first half of the game, helped along by Edmonton hitting a couple posts. Bernier didn’t have much of a chance stopping the Oilers’ two second-period goals. Bernier got a heavy dose of Edmonton stars Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl, but the veteran goaltender kept both off the goal-scoring column.

Special teams problems again: The Wings kept an Edmonton power play that was ranked No. 1 in the NHL off the scoresheet on two Oilers power plays. But the Wings were unable to get on the scoresheet, again, on their own power play in only one attempt in the game.

Edmonton goals: Neal scored his NHL-leading ninth goal at 7:39 of the second period. Darnell Nurse’s shot was tipped but Bernier made the save and the puck squirted to Neal, who snapped the puck at net and was rewarded. Bear scored his second goal at the 12:22 mark. Draisaitl passed to Bear at the point, and the young defenseman snapped a shot through a screened Bernier.

McDavid’s evening: McDavid’s speed and wizardry with the puck can leave opponents look excessively slow, but the Wings did a fine job defensively to keep McDavid off the scoresheet for only the second game this season. But McDavid’s linemate, Draisaitl, kept his streak of eight games going with another point, assisting on Bear’s goal.

Tough trip: The Wings were outscored 12-3 in the three games in western Canada and really struggled offensively. There was a concern about secondary scoring beyond the first line, and it really showed in these three games. Team defense was also an issue the first two games, in Vancouver and Calgary, though the Wings were much tighter against Edmonton. Containing McDavid and Draisaitl was a good accomplishment, but the Wings couldn't secure a win.

Next: The Wings return home and are off until Tuesday when they entertain Vancouver (7:30 p.m.; FSD/97.1).

Twitter: @tkulfan