Edmonton Oilers end road trip with loss in Calgary

Edmonton Oilers' James Neal, top, knocks down Calgary Flames' Andrew Mangiapane during first period NHL hockey action in Calgary, Alta., Saturday, Jan. 11, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Larry MacDougal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Larry MacDougal

The Calgary Flames won their fifth in a row, topping the Edmonton Oilers 4-3 Saturday night.

The Oilers finish their five-game road trip at 3-1-1.

The intensity of the game was worthy of the Battle of Alberta, with Matthew Tkachuk and Zack Kassian taking centre stage.

With 1:54 left in the second, Tkachuk drilled Kassian with a bodycheck behind the Flames goal.

Kassian went after Tkachuk looking for a fight. Kassian pounded away on Tkachuk, delivering 11 left hands to the Flames forward. Kassian was penalized with a double minor for roughing and a ten-minute misconduct.

“He’s a pretty good player, but he’s a p—-, straight up. That’s the definition of it,” said Kassian.

“He wouldn’t fight me two years ago, said I was a fourth liner. Now I have 13 goals. What’s the excuse now?”

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“If he doesn’t want to get hit, then stay off the tracks. I caught him three times there. You’d think he’d learn after the first one,” said Tkachuk.

The Flames controlled the opening minutes of the game. Johnny Gaudreau had a breakaway 90 seconds in but was denied by Mikko Koskinen.

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Elias Lindholm gave them the lead when he spun around in the slot and slapped a shot past Koskinen.

The Oilers came back 1:03 later when Kailer Yamamoto found Ryan Nugent-Hopkins with a cross ice pass. Nugent-Hopkins beat Cam Talbot up high for his eleventh of the season.

Four minutes later, Connor McDavid sped past the Flames defence for a breakaway and lifted home his 25th of the season. Johnny Gaudreau tied it in the final minute of the first with a long wrist shot.

READ MORE: Edmonton Oilers start slow but rally to win in Montreal

Nugent-Hopkins had a shot go in off Gaudreau’s skate early in the second. Dillon Dube took advantage of an Oilers turnover to even it 3-3.

READ MORE: McDavid scores a beauty, has 4 points as Edmonton Oilers beat Leafs


Lindholm scored the game winner on the second half of Kassian’s double minor 39 seconds into the third.

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Yamamoto had two assists. Talbot made 27 saves in his first appearance against the Oilers since being traded by the team on February 15, 2019.

The Oilers, 24-18-5, will host Nashville on Tuesday.

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