EDMONTON, Alberta – OK, who are these guys? Whoever they are, they're fun to watch.
They had an early lead. They repeatedly scored on the power play. They scored a dirty goal in front. They scored on an odd-man rush. They poured it on and on and on.
The Buffalo Sabres appear to have finally shown up midway through the season.
The Sabres demolished the Edmonton Oilers, 5-0, Tuesday to win for the second straight night. They had won two in a row just one other time this season, and it came way back in October.
It's a welcome relief for the team, which appears determined to show it is not the lifeless club that lost, 7-1, to Dallas on Saturday. Buffalo beat Calgary, 2-1, in overtime Monday. It was simply a warm-up for the total domination in Rogers Place.
Buffalo improved to 13-26-9 this season by outskating and thoroughly outscoring the Oilers, who saw a three-game winning streak come to a crashing, boo-filled halt.
Multipoint men: The score sheet was a popular place for Buffalo's big-name players. Jack Eichel had one goal, three assists and four points. Sam Reinhart had a goal and three points. Ryan O'Reilly (two goals), Rasmus Ristolainen and Kyle Okposo (two assists each) also had multipoint nights.
Streak continues: Eichel extended his point streak to seven games in convincing fashion. He reached the 20-goal mark and is one assist shy of 30.
By the way: Robin Lehner got all the goal support he could possibly need, but the Sabres goaltender stopped all 33 shots anyway. It was his second shutout of the season and ended his four-game losing skid.
More power for them: The Sabres' power play essentially won Monday's game in Calgary, scoring in overtime just as a Flames penalty expired. The unit opened the scoring against the Oilers.
Ristolainen fired from the middle of the blue line, and Reinhart continued his burgeoning net-front presence. The right winger tipped the blast past goaltender Cam Talbot with 5:04 left in the opening period.
The goal was the ninth of the season for Reinhart.
Rare advantage: For just the ninth time in their 48 games, the Sabres carried a lead into the first intermission. Reinhart's goal was the only one of the opening 20 minutes. Buffalo took eight of the final nine shots during the period, finishing with a 15-8 edge.
Four-goal second: The Sabres exploded during the second period, scoring four times on 12 shots and sending Talbot to the bench in favor of backup goalie Al Montoya.
Quick start: O'Reilly needed just 17 seconds of the period to score his first of the night, driving to the slot to bury Scott Wilson's rebound.
Blade runner: Zemgus Girgensons fed Okposo on a two-on-one, and Okposo's return pass bounced off Girgensons' skate and into the net for a 3-0 lead. The goal counted because there was no kicking motion.
Gunner: Eichel's one-timer is in full effect. After using it to win the game Monday, he ripped another one from the top of the circle to make it 4-0. The power-play goal with 8:21 left in the second ended Talbot's night.
Pass, pass, pass: The 5-0 lead was as easy as Eichel to Reinhart to O'Reilly. The third power-play goal of the night was a quick-strike masterpiece.
According to Sabres videographer Sam Korotkin, the last time the Sabres had a five-goal lead was a 7-2 advantage over Tampa Bay on March 19, 2012.
Lineup swap: Former Oilers forward Benoit Pouliot returned to the Sabres' lineup after being scratched Monday in Calgary. He replaced Nick Baptiste, who sat after taking four shots in 10 minutes of ice time against the Flames.
Pouliot skated with center Evan Rodrigues and right wing Jordan Nolan. Eichel centered for Girgensons and Okposo. O'Reilly was between Wilson and Reinhart. Johan Larsson remained in the middle of Evander Kane and Jason Pominville.
He's back: Sabres defenseman Victor Antipin played for the first time since Dec. 19. He'd missed 13 games through a combination of the flu and healthy scratches. He replaced Nathan Beaulieu, who flew back to Buffalo for evaluation of a possible concussion.
Antipin skated with Jake McCabe. The other pairs were Marco Scandella- Ristolainen and Justin Falk-Casey Nelson. Josh Gorges missed his second straight game due to illness.
Next: The Sabres complete their three-game swing through western Canada with a visit to Vancouver on Thursday. After that, Eichel will head to the All-Star Game and the rest of the team will head into a weekend off. The following game is at home Tuesday against New Jersey.