NHL Game Summary - Calgary at Edmonton |
(Thursday, October 5th)
Final Score: Edmonton 3, Calgary 1
Edmonton, AB (Sports Network) - Petr Sykora scored two goals and Dwayne
Roloson stopped 31 shots, as the Edmonton Oilers began the defense of their
Western Conference title with a 3-1 victory over bitter cross-province rival
Calgary in the season opener for both teams at Rexall Place.
Daniel Tjarnqvist also scored for Edmonton, which lost to Carolina in Game 7
of the Stanley Cup Finals in June. The Oilers opened the 2006-07 campaign
without star defenseman Chris Pronger, who requested a trade in the offseason
and was granted one to Anaheim in exchange for a multi-player package that
included Joffrey Lupul.
Roloson, who was acquired last March from Minnesota and served as a key cog in
the Oilers tremendous postseason run, stopped nine shots in the first period
and 14 more in the second in a strong season-opening start.
Jarome Iginla missed on a penalty shot in the first period and later scored
the only goal for Calgary, which is now coached by former assistant Jim
Playfair. During the offseason, the Flames acquired high-scoring forward Alex
Tanguay from Colorado, and also brought in veteran forward Jeff Friesen.
Miikka Kiprusoff made 19 saves in the losing effort.
The contest, which featured the two most recent Stanley Cup Finals
representatives from the Western Conference, marked the front end of a season-
opening home-and-home set. The Flames will host Edmonton on Saturday night.
In the latter stages of the opening period, Sykora and the Oilers used
momentum from Roloson, who stopped Iginla's penalty shot with 5:47 remaining,
and scored two quick goals.
Only 30 seconds after the save, Sykora punched home a loose puck from the goal
mouth. A flip pass from the Edmonton zone found the stick of Raffi Torres, who
hustled down the right-wing side, cut toward the slot, and left the puck for a
quick shot. The save was made, but Sykora knocked in the rebound for a 1-0
With under three minutes remaining in the opening stanza, a 5-on-3 Oilers
advantage led to a two-goal edge. Sykora corralled the puck inside the right
circle and released a slap shot that slid through Kiprusoff's five-hole at
Calgary wasted four power-play chances during a scoreless second period, and
Kiprusoff's great pad save on a Torres wrist shot from the low left circle
with 30 seconds to play in the stanza kept the Flames within two.
After Sykora got whistled for hooking at 4:07 of the third period, the Flames
nearly scored on the power play, but Kristian Huselius hit the post with a
wide open net from in close.
Midway through the final period, the Oilers grabbed a 3-0 lead with another
power-play marker. Ales Hemsky skated from the right circle and dropped the
disc for Tjardqvist, whose wrister from a sharp angle lit the lamp with 9:25
Iginla's goal -- a laser from the low right circle -- with over five minutes
remaining in regulation got the Flames on the scoreboard, but that was as
close as the visitors would get as Roloson and the Oilers held on for the two-
This marked the 29th career two-goal game for Sykora...The Flames were
scoreless on nine power-play chances, while Edmonton finished 2-for-8 with the
extra skater...Attendance was 16,839...The Flames fell to 11-13-10 in season-
opening contests, while Edmonton is now 14-9-4 in such games.
10/06 02:24:21 ET