The Edmonton Oilers dropped a 9-6 decision to the Calgary Flames in Game One of their second-round series. The Flames get the first lead of the series in what was a very weird game. The Flames held 5-1 and 6-2 leads at two separate moments but the Oilers fought back to tie things at 6-6 early in the third period.
A few late goals were the difference in this one. I made sure to document it all right here for your viewing pleasure...
This one didn’t quite begin as planned. Within the first 30 seconds, Hampus Lindholm flung the puck toward the net and beat Smith. No screen and no deflections...just a pathetic effort from Mike Smith. It only got worse, Andrew Mangiapane potted another one after getting a feed from Mikael Backlund from behind the net. Not even a minute in and the Oilers found themselves in a 2-0 hole.
The poor play continued as they sent Calgary to the powerplay as Tyson Barrie got caught with a hook. Dillon Dube was very close to putting this one away (a mere 5 minutes into the game) but Smith decided to show up and stop him. Miraculously, the penalty was killed and the deficit stayed at two.
Don’t get too excited, Brett Ritchie scored a shift later. Calgary takes a 3-0 lead and Mike Smith’s night was over. Mikko Koskinen came in to make his first appearance in the playoffs. Edmonton turning in an absolutely terrible effort and it was costing them big time.
The goal parade continued...but this time for the Oilers! After some extended time in the Calgary end, Connor McDavid walked in front of the net and went five-hole. Edmonton starts to chip away to make it a 3-1 game. This is all happening less than 10 minutes into the game.
An opportunity showed itself for the Oilers to get back into this game. Backlund went to the box for cross-checking, giving Edmonton a chance to make it 3-2 with lots of hockey left. They wasted that opportunity however and failed to generate even a clean zone entry.
The self-inflicted wounds kept coming. This time it was Duncan Keith heading to the box for a dumb crosscheck. The Flames peppered Koskinen on the chance but couldn’t beat him as the Finn was giving Edmonton some goaltending for a change.
The rough stuff started to pick up in the late stages. Milan Lucic hit McDavid after the whistle which caused a big scrum involving Evander Kane trying to get a piece of the Lucic. After everything cleared up it was just Lucic that got the penalty, giving Edmonton their second man advantage of the period. It went terribly and no momentum was gained.
The first period ended with the Flames outshooting Edmonton 19-7 and taking a 3-1 lead. An atrocious effort from the Oil.
This one started similarly to the first. Blake Coleman scored in the first minute to restore Calgary’s 3 goal lead. The scoreboard now read 4-1. Edmonton was an absolute tire-fire in their own end allowing the Flames to steamroll them on a consistent basis.
At this point it looked like Edmonton gave up. They were losing every single battle and allowing Calgary to shoot from everywhere. The Flames were dominating each line and getting at least a few great chances every shift. Mikko Koskinen was effectively being left out to dry. Shots were 29-8 less than 10 minutes into the period.
Coleman tipped in another not too long after. 5-1 Calgary.
Evan Bouchard was able to get one back on a beautiful feed from McDavid. Oilers cut the lead to 5-2 midway through the second. Edmonton had to make sure there was a negative on the play as Zack Kassian took a dumb penalty AFTER the goal to give Calgary another PP.
Calgary scored on that chance. Matthew Tkachuk, 6-2 Calgary.
Jacob Markstrom was also kinda bad tonight as well. Case in point: Zach Hyman scored a very weird goal right after the Tkachuk goal. 6-3 now. Hyman then turned around and got another one! All of a sudden a 6-2 lead was now a 6-4 game with plenty of hockey left.
Leon Draisaitl then potted one late on a breakaway to make it a 6-5 game! The Oilers pulling off an incredible comeback effort after this one looked like a slam dunk for the Flames.
A frantic second ends with the Oilers shockingly within striking distance.
A flip of the script in the third period as it was the Oilers who got the early goal instead of the Flames. McDavid drove the net to cause chaos which gave Yamamoto a wide-open net to tie things up. 6-6 and I have no idea what is happening.
The tie wouldn’t last too long as Rasmus Andersson found twine after an extended shift in the Edmonton zone. 7-6 Calgary.
McDavid gave the Oilers a chance to get back even by drawing a hold. A huge powerplay chance. They weren’t able to convert and it cost them. An errant pass by Draisaitl sent Tkachuk on a breakaway and he went five-hole. 8-6 Calgary.
Edmonton went right back to the PP as Tkachuk got caught on a puck over glass call. Once again it was wasted without much fanfare.
Tkachuk eventually got the empty-netter to complete his hattrick and put this one away.
9-6 Calgary final.
- Goaltending was awful from all angles tonight. Although Smith was particularly terrible to start and gave the Oilers a massive disadvantage in this one. That being said, Markstrom was not great and Mikko had a few iffy ones go past him. It was a wash tonight.
- The defensive structure was an absolute mess for the Oilers. Too many consecutive shifts in the defensive zone and the Flames are the type of team to make you pay.
- Oilers usually dominate on special teams but they struggled mightily tonight. Lots of opportunities to get back into the game or to tie things up that were wasted. Has to be better in this series.
- I thought Matthew Tkachuk’s second goal was kind of cheap. He should have still been in the box as he was a part of a pair of coincidental along with Kane and not the initial call on the play. The Flames cheated the system and the refs didn’t notice. Whatever.
- I’ll give Edmonton credit for staying in this one. I had this one written off at 6-2 and they came back to tie it at 6-6. That is no small feat and it should give them confidence moving forward. The flames showed a lot of weakness tonight even if they took home the win.
- A series isn’t won or lost in one game. Still lots of runway to comeback in this one. Game 2 is set for this Friday. #LetsGoOilers