The Flames were finally able to snap a five game losing streak in Edmonton with a convincing 5-2 victory over the Oilers Saturday night. Calgary came out hot from the jump and didn’t let up for 60 minutes to come away with a hard fought win.
The BOA games have become something special again and when Johnny Gaudreau and Connor McDavid meet it’s always a treat to watch. And tonight was no exception....unless you were an Oilers fan. Johnny Gaudreau opened the scoring with a pretty goal that found Mikko Koskinen’s 5-hole and a mere 44 seconds into the second period Calgary took a 1-0 lead. Gaudreau would also pick up an assist on Sean Monahan’s 3rd period PPG, extending his point streak to 11 games. McDavid? All he got for his troubles was a goose egg on the score sheet and a bloody eye. Both star players were targets throughout this game and took some hard hits, but Connor McDavid would get the worst of it. After getting Garnet Hathaway up high the Flames rugged forward would deliver a solid body check that sent McDavid into the glass and would open him up above the left eye. The Oilers star would get repaired quickly and get back on the ice, but he was not effective in the offensive zone all night long.
Calgary would extend their lead to 2-0 when Mark Giordano would work extra hard to collect his 11th goal of the season by putting in his own rebound and it looked like the Flames were off and running. Oliver Kylington would pad the Flames lead with this second goal of the season in the second period and with a 3-0 lead this was looking like a FLames blowout victory. Pump the brakes. The Oilers would strike at the end of the 2nd period when Ryan Nugent-Hopkins would get Edmonton within two by beating David Rittich over his shoulder on his blocker side and the Flames would head to the locker room with a 3-1 lead.
Edmonton’s best pressure of the night came early in the 3rd period with the momentum they had from their late goal in the second. Edmonton would head out on the PP and Milan Lucic would camp out front and tip home a shot getting the Oilers within one at 3-2. What everyone seemed to forget was that this is the Calgary Flames and the 3rd period is where they go to work. Mikael Backlund would kill all hope of an Edmonton comeback when he would bat down a pass and cruise in, beating Koskinen to put the Flames up 4-2. Sean Monahan would add an insurance goal at 16:03 and the Flames would walk out of Rogers Place with a 5-2 victory.
2nd: 00:44- Gaudreau (29) (Lindholm/Giordano), 7:29- (PPG) Giordano (11) (Monahan/Hanifin), 15:30- Kylington (2) (Backlund/Frolik)
3rd: 14:15- Backlund (11) (Unassisted), 16:03- (PPG) Monahan (27) (Tkachuk/Gaudreau)
2nd: 19:42- Nugent-Hopkins (16) (Puljujarvi)
3rd: 4:16- (PPG) Lucic (5) (Puljujarvi/Jones)
Calgary really owned this game and they took it to Edmonton from the start. The Flames played fast, their forecheck was solid and the PK was outstanding, considering the amount of whistles. There were 13 PPO between the two teams on the night which is ridiculous. Sure, the officials wanted to keep this game under control, but 13 penalties is absurd. The Flames best effort of the night was when they had to kill off a four minute double minor, which they did brilliantly.
David Rittich was solid in his return to the crease stopping 22 of the 24 shots he faced. “Big Save Dave” made a few big time stops on the night, but he didn’t have to stand on his head much. He made he stops he had to make, didn’t look bothered by the bright lights of the BOA and his quality play helped the Flames end their losing streak in Edmonton.
Flame Of The Game
Oliver Kylington (D). Kylington collected his 2nd goal of the season, which turned out to be the game winner. Kylington and his rookie D partner Rasmus Andersson were more than up for the task tonight and performed very well. Not only did Kylington provide offence, but he had some solid defensive play in the third period when it looked like Edmonton was about to turn the game around. His play helped stop that and get the Flames a win.