The Calgary Flames snapped their four-game losing streak as they beat the Ottawa Senators 3-2 in overtime. Leading 2-0 going into the third period, the Flames let that lead slip away, as the Senators tied it up with barely a minute left in the game. The Flams could have easily lost the game in the extra frame, as the Senators got the only scoring chances until the very end. One chance is all the Flames would need to secure the extra point.
The Flames were the first team to show energy at the first drop of the puck. The Senators did not generate an official shot attempt until after five minutes of play. Calgary’s superior possession play hindered them, yet Kyle Turris got the first great chance of the game. He received a stretch pass from Erik Karlsson, outmuscled a Flames defender and got a partial break to get a shot on net.
The rest of the period went by quietly. Although the Flames played the superior possession game, they did not overwhelm the Senators. The Senators were able to even match the Flames in shots thanks to nearly six minutes of power play time. It was a rather tight-checking game with very few scoring chances.
Mark Stone’s skill at stealing the puck resulted in a great scoring chance for the Senators. He set up Mike Hoffman who released a signature one-time shot, but Elliott made a strong glove save.
Calgary’s depth forwards did the work to get the game’s first goal. Stajan got the puck from a turnover at the Flames’ blue line and dropped it for Michael Ferland. Mike Condon stopped Ferland’s first shot, but an attempt to swipe the puck to the corner of the ice resulted in returning it to Ferland who scored on the rebound.
Mikael Frolik forced Condon to make a big save to keep the Senators in the game. The Flames caught the Senators on a line change, giving Frolik a good amount of space for a partial break.
Dougie Hamilton made a solid deke around a Senators defender, allowing him to get a good shot on goal. Sean Monahan outshone his teammate by grabbing the puck off the rebound and scored a goal with the stick in between the legs with Condon sprawled on the ice.
The Senators earned another power play opportunity but were unable to convert on a couple of shots. A goal there certainly would have helped, but they went into the intermission with a 2-0 deficit.
Newcomer Tommy Wingels scored on his Senators debut. A won battle along the boards got the puck to Fredrick Claesson who directed it towards the net. Wingels, alone in front, tipped the shot past Elliott to bring the game to 2-1.
The Senators got some life from that goal, creating more traffic in front of the net and winning board battles.
They reaped the rewards of their effort and patience near the last minute of the game. With the goalie pulled, Chris Wideman took a one-time shot, and the rolling puck made it into the net as the Senators tied the game.
The open ice from three-on-three play benefited the Senators. They not only had the advantage in possession but also created three great scoring chances courtesy Stone, Jean-Gabriel Pageau and Hoffman.
Their inability to convert would come back to bite them, as the Flames would get the best chance of them all. After Gaudreau swiped the puck away from Karlsson, he and Backlund went in alone towards Condon. Gaudreau scored the overtime winner after the two Flames passed the puck in between each other a few times.
CGY – Michael Ferland (3) unassisted
CGY – Sean Monahan (16) assisted by Dougie Hamilton (25) & Johnny Gaudreau (20)
OTT – Tommy Wingels (6) assisted by Fredrick Claesson (3)
OTT – Chris Wideman (2) assisted by Mike Hoffman (18) & Zack Smith (12)
THW Three Stars
First star: Johnny Gaudreau (overtime winner)
Second star: Sean Monahan (1 goal, 57% on faceoffs, 17:02 TOI)
Third star: Chris Wideman (1 goal, 16:45 TOI)
Ottawa Senators at Florida Panthers
BB&T Center Center – 7:30 p.m. EST on Tuesday, January 31
Broadcast channels: TSN5 & Fox Sports Florida
Calgary Flames vs. Minnesota Wild
Scotiabank Saddledome – 8 p.m. MST on Tuesday, January 31
Broadcast channels: Sportsnet West, Sportsnet Pacific & Fox Sports North