More than anything, the town needed it.

Four games ago, before the players chose to save Tom Renney from spending the rest of the season coaching from the edge of a cliff, with three wins at home and a loser point in Vancouver, Edmonton fans were running out of patience. Oilers fans were having a difficult time focusing on the future.

But then they experienced Sam Gagner's night of nights — four goals and four assists, for an Edmonton Oilers NHL record-equaling eight-points — and the future came back into focus.

"The town?" said coach Tom Renney. "Start with the team. The team really needed it.

"It could be as galvanizing a moment as we'll have this year. This might be one of those moments where guys kind of bring it all together and look at it as something special and say 'What else can we do?' "

Then he went there.

"This team is going to be special. No question. It's got special people in it, kids who are deeply committed to where this can go," said Renney.

There was more to Sam Gagner's unforgettable moment than Sam Gagner. It was eight points but it kind of worked like eight pills.

Because of his night and an 8-4 win over the Chicago Blackhawks, the Oilers are back to where they were (minus the possibility of making the playoffs) when the team went 8-2-2 to start the season.

You can see the future again. Happy days aren't here again. But happier days have returned.

Renney went out of his way to use the moment to remind everybody that there are several other Oilers who are going to produce many more unforgettable nights.