Connor McDavid and Edmonton Oilers give Darryl Sutter first loss with Calgary Flames
CALGARY – The NHL’s two high scorers helped unleash the firepower of the Edmonton Oilers in a 7-3 battle Wednesday in opposition to host Calgary Flames.
Oilers captain Connor McDavid had one purpose and two assists, and Leon Draisaitl scored three targets for Edmonton (19-13-0).
McDavid leads the race with 56 factors, adopted by teammate Draisaitl with 49.
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Jesse Puljujarvi, Dominik Kahun, Darnell Nurse, Zack Kassian and Alex Chiasson additionally scored for the Oilers, who averted a 3rd straight loss.
Defenseman Tyson Barrie had 4 career-high assists and Mike Smith made 30 saves for the win.
“It is fairly wonderful the talents we’ve on this staff,” stated Barrie. “He is world class, pretty much as good because it will get.”
Elias Lindholm, Mikael Backlund and Johnny Gaudreau replied for the Flames (14-13-3), who misplaced their first recreation beneath Darryl Sutter since taking up as head coach.
Geoff Ward was fired on March 4. The Flames had three straight wins with Sutter behind the bench, however the wheels fell on Wednesday when Calgary trailed 7-1 halfway by the third interval.
Jacob Markstrom refused 23 of 30 pictures within the loss. Sutter stated he by no means thought of eradicating his starter for David Rittich.
“Not for a shift, a second, a minute, something,” Sutter stated. “All of the groups I’ve coached, I do not shoot the goalie.
“I believe they struggle to get by like everybody else. It is mainly a matter of confidence as a result of I believe he is a terrific goalie. However he additionally has to have the ability to struggle.”
Edmonton is third within the North Division and leads the season collection in opposition to Calgary 4-2 with 4 video games to go.
The Flames had been three factors behind the Montreal Canadiens, who held the fourth and ultimate place within the playoffs.
Calgary was behind in a recreation for the primary time beneath Sutter. The Oilers scored three straight targets earlier than the Flames responded.
The Oilers netted 4 targets for Calgary in slightly below seven minutes to start out the third interval.
Calgary had not allowed an influence play purpose in 5 straight video games, however gave up three on Wednesday.
“It is three to 1 to get into the third and we really feel like we’ve an opportunity,” stated Flames captain Mark Giordano.
“We take two penalties and so they rating on each and it is 5 to 1. They sit and await us to undergo them. You’ll be able to’t play open in opposition to a staff like that, which has a lot expertise.”
Gaudreau scored an influence play purpose and Backlund additionally scored late within the third interval to make the rating much less off steadiness.
Kassian performed his first recreation since breaking his hand in a struggle on February 8 and produced Edmonton’s seventh purpose at 8:38.
“It is loopy how the momentum modifications as soon as the massive guys get the cling of it,” Kassian stated. “It is flowing within the lineup. High to backside we have been robust tonight from Smitty.”
McDavid drove the puck deep into the Calgary zone and fed Nurse for the defenseman to beat Markstrom’s glove aspect at 5:55 a.m.
Chiasson tipped a Nugent-Hopkins shot at dwelling at 3:44. Barrie in level handed to McDavid, whose quick-release wrist stroke beat Markstrom between the pads at 1:50.
“Whenever you play in opposition to Connor McDavid, particularly when you’re lagging behind, while you proceed the sport and provides probabilities, and also you play that model of working and gunning, he sniffs blood,” he stated. stated Flames ahead Matthew Tkachuk.
Tkachuk, circling behind the online, despatched a purpose help to Lindholm to complete at 9:04 of the second interval. Kahun made a cross by Draisaitl’s legs 25 seconds earlier.
The guests led 2-0 on Puljujarvi’s power-play purpose at 7:22 of the primary interval. He redirected a Barrie shot from the purpose between Markstrom’s pads.
McDavid turned a turnover from Milan Lucic’s defensive zone right into a purpose at 4:39 of the primary interval. McDavid handed the puck to Nugent-Hopkins to shovel a Markstrom plunger.
The Oilers have a fast rotation in opposition to the Winnipeg Jets at dwelling on Thursday. The Flames journey to Toronto for back-to-back video games in opposition to the division-leading Maple Leafs beginning Friday.
Notes: Draisaitl prolonged his level streak to eight video games with seven targets, eight assists on this interval. . . McDavid prolonged his streak to seven video games with 4 targets and 12 assists. . Edmonton ahead Jujhar Khaira didn’t costume on Wednesday as a consequence of an upper-body damage suffered in a struggle on Monday with Calgary’s Brett Ritchie.
This report by The Canadian Press was first printed on March 17, 2021.