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Flames rally from two-goal deficit to dump Jets 6-3 in home-opener

by TY PILSON @typilson /

Fans came to see the Flames 2017-18 home-opener, and instead a 1980s NHL hockey game broke out.

Down 3-1 after the first period Saturday night at the Scotiabank Saddledome, the Flames rattled off four goals in the second period en route to a 6-3 victory over the Winnipeg Jets in a game reminiscent of an old Smythe Division battle.

With the win, the Flames improved to 1-1 on the season.

TJ Brodie scored twice, while Micheal Ferland, Johnny Gaudreau, Kris Versteeg and Mikael Backlund added singles for Calgary.

Both Brodie and Gaudreau finished the night with four points each to pace the offence.

It was just Brodie's second career multi-goal game and the second time he had recorded four points in a game.

It was fourth time Gaudreau had recorded four points in an outing.

Mike Smith had another big night between the pipes, making 25 saves, many of the jaw-dropping variety.

Video: WPG@CGY: Smith makes a handful of saves in close

Brandon Tanev, Mark Scheifele and Patrick Laine scored for the visitors, while Steve Mason turned aside 39 of the 45 shots he faced.

With Calgary on the powerplay 8:35 into the opening frame, Tanev grabbed an errant pass and broke in on Smith, managing to chip the puck up and over him to open the scoring.

However, just 1:33 later with four seconds left in Calgary's extra-man advantage, Brodie took a return pass from Gaudreau and cranked a point-shot that found its way through traffic and up-and-over Mason's outstretched leg, glove-side.

Video: WPG@CGY: Brodie snipes a one-timer for PPG

Versteeg collected the other assist on the goal.

It was the Flames first goal of the new campaign after they were blanked 3-0 by the Oilers in their season-opener Wednesday night in Edmonton.

The Jets answered right back just over two minutes later on a powerplay of their own, with Scheifele finding his way into the slot and taking a pass from Blake Wheeler, who was parked behind the net, and then one-timing it home.

Laine then scored to make it 3-1 when he cashed in a rebound off Mathieu Perreault's shot from the high slot that had hit the cross-bar.

Just moments after Mason absolutely robbed Curtis Lazar on a two-on-one with Gaudreau, Brodie fired another long-range blast that found twine to bring the homeside within one.

Ferland tied it up 12:42 into the second stanza as the flood gates opened.

Brodie hesitated and froze Mason and then feed a wide-open Gaudreau cross-ice who fired the puck into the empty cage from the face-off circle.

Video: WPG@CGY: Gaudreau finds twine on Brodie's slick feed

Just 1:36 second later, Monahan made a backhand pass from behind the net with a Jets player draped on him that landed on the tape of Versteeg and he made no mistake, opening up a two-goal lead for Calgary.

The Flames didn't let up in the third, with Backlund tipping a pass from Dougie Hamilton past Mason just 16 seconds into the period to round out the scoring.

Video: WPG@CGY: Backlund redirects shot into the twine

ONE-TIMERS: Last night's tilt was the first of three games between the two clubs this season, with another Dome date slated for Jan. 20 in a rare Saturday afternoon matinee (1 p.m.)  … Flames skipper Mark Giordano is one goal shy of 100 on his career. He is just 15 points away from passing Robert Reichel (354) for 15th all-time on the franchise scoring lost  … No. 23 Sean Monahan turns just 23 on October 12 …  Johnny Gaudreau collected three helpers in Saturday's win against Winnipeg. He recorded his first career assist against the Jets back on Oct. 19, 2014 … Mike Smith needs just four more wins to reach 200 regular-season victories in his career.

NEXT UP: The Flames now head out of town for a two-game road swing through California, playing the Anaheim Ducks Monday (8 p.m. MTN) and the Los Angeles Kings Wednesday (8:30 p.m. MTN). They return home to take on the Ottawa Senators Friday night (7 p.m. MTN).

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