The Oilers hit the road for three games, beginning in Sunrise, FL on Monday. The 5:30 pm MT game against the Panthers will be broadcast on Sportsnet West and can be heard on 630 CHED and the Oilers Radio Network.
EDMONTON, AB - Mark Fayne tied the game in the third period, while Teddy Purcell potted the lone shootout goal as the Oilers topped the Calgary Flames 2-1.
Just under three minutes into the first, Cam Talbot made a remarkable glove save to keep things scoreless. The Oilers netminder turned away a Sean Monahan shot, but the Flames centre flipped a backhanded centring pass out in the slot for a trailing T.J. Brodie. Talbot promptly robbed the defenceman of a golden scoring chance, drawing a standing ovation from the Rexall Place crowd.
“You always have to be ready with that team, they can generate some offence pretty quickly,” said Talbot. “You’ve got to be ready right from the drop of the puck. I was able to make a few big saves early. They capitalized on one about halfway through (the first), but we were able to shut the door from there.”
The scoring opened at 10:41 of the first, with the Flames taking a 1-0 lead. Sam Bennett was able to flutter a backhand over the sprawling Talbot for his sixth goal in his last three games.
Edmonton successfully killed off two consecutive Flames power plays past the midway point of the first to stay within one. The Oilers penalty trouble, however, would continue in the second.
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins took his second penalty of the night at 2:41 of the middle frame, a slashing call on Mark Giordano. Fortunately for the Oilers, their penalty kill was up to the task again, keeping it a 1-0 game.
“When we spend eight of the first 24 (minutes) penalty killing, that’s the game right there,” said Oilers Head Coach Todd McLellan. “If they get two or three, we’re not exactly scoring a lot of goals right now, so that’s the game. The penalty kill, the last six periods and overtime, has done a tremendous job after getting dinged up in Arizona. That’s Talbs, that’s defencemen doing a good job, that’s forwards sacrificing and getting it done.”
The Flames didn’t take their first penalty of the game until there were 45 seconds left in the middle frame. The Oilers couldn’t capitalize on their first power play opportunity.
Fayne potted the equalizer at 10:37 of the third, after the Oilers won a clean draw in the offensive zone. The Oilers defenceman sniped a long-range shot to tie the game 1-1. That was Fayne’s first goal of the season. Taylor Hall recorded the lone assist.
By sending it to overtime, the Oilers secured their eighth straight game to be decided by one goal.
Talbot made a huge save on Mikael Backlund in OT to keep the Oilers hopes alive.
Nurse took a holding penalty at 1:58 of the overtime period, but the Oilers stout PK was able to kill off the Flames man advantage. With that failed power play attempt, the Flames went 0-for-5 on the night.
The Oilers and Flames would head to a shootout, scoreless in sudden death.
Nugent-Hopkins rang his shootout chance off the post, but Purcell made no mistake on his chance to make it 1-0 after two rounds. Talbot stopped Bennett with his pad to lift the Oilers to the 2-1 victory over their provincial rivals.
“They’re all good to get. We can’t pick and choose,” McLellan said of the win. “When we get, we take and we’re happy. This one in particular, because of the rivalry, because of the way we lost to them the last time we played them in this building, the fact we’re going on the road, it’s nice to begin a tough road trip with a win at home.”
The Oilers begin a three-game road trip on Monday in Sunrise, FL against the Panthers.