Game 2 Post Gamer: Flames v. Oilers – McHero

Eberle

This is my first post in a very long time, and what better way to get back in the groove than recapping the action from the second round of the battle of Alberta? I am stoked for the new beginning that the season brings and I feel some genuine enthusiasm for the first time in a long time. We all know the moves that were made throughout the off season so no need to cover old material. I intend to write this post period by period, meaning that I will do the write up as the game takes place. So if you are expecting the final score in the first paragraph that isn’t going to be happening tonight. Back with more after the first period ends folks.

*Just a quick note before the puck drop. The opening night show at Roger’s was much better than what I’d seen from the Flames organization. Looked like a 90’s laser show… Really disappointing after the amazing show on the ice at the Oilers new digs. Although the short moment of the silence for recently deceased former Alberta Premier, Jim Prentice was a nice touch.*

FIRST PERIOD

The Flames came out flying as was to be expected and opened the scoring a little under two minutes into the period to take the 1 to 0 lead. Both teams were getting their chances and it has been fast and furious for the first 10 minutes of the period. Our savior, Captain Connor nearly tied the game on a partial break but was foiled by Brian Elliot on not one but two shots. A few minutes later Connor went in on a clear breakaway and this time did not disappoint the Oilers faithful going top shelf glove side on Elliot with a beauty of a backhand shot.

Oilers have been vastly outshot to this point of the period but have started to control the play a fair bit more than at the start of the period. And just like that the Flames storm back and regain the lead off of a shot from Frolik that Talbot clearly didn’t see until it was coming out of his net. Benoit Pouliot took the first penalty of the game, being called for interference with right around eight minutes remaining in the period.

The penalty kill was up to the challenge however and never looked to be in serious damage of giving up the goal. Nice to have Anton Lander in the game tonight if for no other reason than his PK and face-off abilities. With a little under four minutes remaining in the first the Flames are clearly the controlling team thus far in the game and are still out shooting the Oilers by nearly double. At the end of the period, the shots stand at 24 to 12 for the Flames. The game was not nearly as lopsided as the shot totals might indicate however. Cam Talbot played fairly well and seemed to be a little bit calmer than he was in the home opener on Wednesday. I anticipate the Oil will come out a bit hungrier to start the second and this game will go down to the wire people. More after the second.

SECOND PERIOD

To start the second period it looks like McDavid is definitely motivated along with the rest of the team as they come out flying for the first two minutes before a Calgary Flames penalty brought play to a halt. With the man advantage the Oilers did very little and managed only two shots and neither from a dangerous area. Edmonton is really going to have to work on the special teams if they expect to win many games this season. With the firepower this team has, it should be academic for the most part.

The second power play for Edmonton was vastly different from the first attempt tonight and the boys were on point and controlled the puck in the offensive zone for the entire time until Ebs managed to net his second goal of the season, first of the game, from Draisaitl and McDavid. To not be out done, Benoit Pouliot takes his second penalty of the game, yet another bone-headed interference call 200 feet from his own net. For the life of me, I will never understand his habit of taking offensive zone penalties.

The duo of Anton Lander and Mark Letestu look really good on the PK as is expected from bother players. I like seeing Nuge out there short-handed as well as he applies tremendous pressure to the opposition and could end up popping a shortie for us with that style of play. Dennis (ref killer) Wideman tried to draw a third power play with some truly horrendous acting off a Tyler Pitlick and thankfully the refs seen right through that for a change.

The third penalty for the Oilers is another uneventful kill for the most part all things considered and the game remains tied at the halfway point of the second and beyond. Both teams are playing a fast entertaining game to this point and it doesn’t appear that is going to change at any point soon. Nuge has been flying throughout the second and has been one of the more noticeable Oilers not named McDavid. Oilers to the man advantage again and controlled play for the most part during the two minutes but could not manage to light the lamp mostly due to some nice shot blocking by the Flames.

The remainder of the period was fairly uneventful while still remaining up-tempo and physical. Good game by both squads in the middle frame. Looking forward to seeing what Connor and company have in stock for us in the third.

THIRD PERIOD

The third is underway and the Oilers start the same way as in the second. The McDavid line gains control of the puck and controls play in the offensive zone until the first whistle. Effective cycling by the second line leads to the first power play of the third period thanks to Monahan sitting in the sin bin for two minutes or less. The Oilers take their first lead of the game on the power play thanks to some beautiful passing from both Connor and Lucic in setting up Leon Draisaitl for a very easy tap in.

The power play looks vastly different from game one and has been very effective to this point tonight.

MCDAVID

Connor is heading to the change room thanks to an errant stick from TJ Brodie. I would imagine he will return after repairs. Didn’t look overly serious. Nuge takes an uncharacteristic penalty and the Flames are headed back to the power play trailing by one.I can’t say enough good things about how good Letestu and Lander have been tonight on the penalty kill. Just really solid defensive zone play from both of them.

Mark Letestu with a tremendous effort as he pokes the puck away from the Flames and heads in on a short-handed breakaway and buries it. Oilers now lead the game 4 to 2 and are rolling, not allowing any shots against on the penalty kill.

Shortly after our favorite player draws a tripping penalty on Mark Giordano but for some insane reason, the ref calls the embellishment diving penalty on Connor.  With 34 seconds remaining in the off-setting minors Jordan Eberle takes a neutral zone tripping penalty. Calgary controlling the play with the man advantage but still not generating much in the way of scoring chances.

With less than nine minutes remaining I would expect a lot more urgency from Calgary than what we have seen on this power play. Edmonton kills the penalty and shortly after Calgary scores from the left side when Jokipakka, or whatever his name is, fires a wrist shot off the end of Tyler Pitlick’s stick and over the glove of Talbot. Flames are really coming on at this point and Edmonton is working hard to protect their one goal lead. 4 minutes remaining and the Oil seem to have weathered the storm and the game is back to a bit more back and forth play giving them some

4 minutes remaining and the Oil seem to have weathered the storm and the game is back to a bit more back and forth play giving them some much-needed breathing room. All Flames now with 2:12 to remain and the Oilers are hanging on by the seat of their pants. Talbot still appears quite calm and manages to halt the play, gloving the puck up high off the glass. The Flames have the

All Flames now with 2:12 to remain and the Oilers are hanging on by the seat of their pants. Talbot still appears quite calm and manages to halt the play, gloving the puck up high off the glass. The Flames have the extra attacker with the net empty. Milan Lucic with some fantastic work along the boards to send Leon Draisaitl in alone on the empty net to take back their two-goal lead.

Thanks to some great work on the penalty kill and power play the Oilers win the second installment of the battle. Overall Edmonton played a good game and didn’t get discouraged like in seasons past when the opposition scored to take an early lead. This appears to be a different team but in reality, this was a game against a team that most predict to be out of the playoffs again this season. We will reserve judgment for later next week when we face some stiffer competition but through 120 minutes we are happy fans! On top of having a good couple of games to start the season is the four huge points against a western conference rival!  These could be vital come late March and early April. I know that is getting ahead of things but that is big picture thinking. Thinking small picture, the Oilers defense has looked vastly improved over last season, albeit in a very small sample size. The addition of Russel has been awesome so far and he has played very well against his former team through two games. All around the defense just seems steadier and in a lot better position than previously seen. Our forwards are rolling with Connor having back to back three point nights, Leon Draisaitl matched that with three points of his own tonight with two goals and an apple. Next game is Sunday for the season opener for Sportsnet Hometown Hockey against the

On top of having a good couple of games to start the season is the four huge points against a western conference rival!  These could be vital come late March and early April. I know that is getting ahead of things but that is big picture thinking. Thinking small picture, the Oilers defense has looked vastly improved over last season, albeit in a very small sample size. The addition of Russel has been awesome so far and he has played very well against his former team through two games. All around the defense just seems steadier and in a lot better position than previously seen. Our forwards are rolling with Connor having back to back three point nights, Leon Draisaitl matched that with three points of his own tonight with two goals and an apple. Next game is Sunday for the season opener for Sportsnet Hometown Hockey against the

Thinking small picture, the Oilers defense has looked vastly improved over last season, albeit in a very small sample size. The addition of Russel has been awesome so far and he has played very well against his former team through two games. All around the defense just seems steadier and in a lot better position than previously seen. Our forwards are rolling with Connor having back to back three point nights, Leon Draisaitl matched that with three points of his own tonight with two goals and an apple. Next game is Sunday for the season opener for Sportsnet Hometown Hockey against the

Next game is Sunday for the season opener for Sportsnet Hometown Hockey against the much-maligned Buffalo Sabres, losing Jack Eichel to a sprained ankle prior to the season opener and Evander Kane cracked three ribs in the season opener. Well, at least the night clubs should be a little quieter with Evander on the mend. Should be a good tilt and hopefully, the good guys can come away with another two points.

MY THREE STARS

  1. Connor McDavid – he led the attack the entire night and was instrumental in the big win.
  2. Leon Draisaitl – Scored twice including one on the power play and an empty netter. Added an assist and was 11 for 16 in the faceoff circle.
  3. Kris Russel – notched his third assist of the early season and was solid defensively all night. A tremendous pickup.

Who are your three stars of the game and how long do you think we can keep the win streak going? let us know in the comments.

 

Click the pic and grab a 16-bit McDavid tee for the summer!
Click the pic and grab a 16-bit McDavid tee for the summer!

 

Rob Cooke Written by:

I will come back to this when I can think of something interesting to say here.