March 14, 2018 / 4:00 AM / 10 days ago

One goal proves enough for Flames to top Oilers

Johnny Gaudreau scored the lone goal early in the second period and goalie Mike Smith pitched a 28-save shutout as the Calgary Flames blanked the visiting Edmonton Oilers 1-0 on Tuesday night.

The Flames snapped a seven-game losing skid against their Alberta rivals with the important win at the Scotiabank Saddledome as they remain in the playoff hunt. Coincidentally, the last Flames win over the Oilers was a shutout victory, a 5-0 decision on April 2, 2016.

Gaudreau tallied at the 5:18 mark of the middle frame by taking advantage of some horrid Oilers defensive play. Calgary’s Micheal Ferland won a board battle with Adam Larsson, then gave the puck to Sean Monahan, who faked a shot before feeding a wide-open Gaudreau at the doorstep. Gaudreau roofed a backhander over the shoulder of Oilers goalie Cam Talbot.

Gaudreau’s goal was his 80th point of the season, a career high.

From there, it was the Smith show, as the Flames netminder was absolutely stellar between the pipes.

Smith, who surrendered four goals Sunday to the New York Islanders in a shaky return after missing a month due to injury, made all kinds of big saves over the final half of the Tuesday contest. He improved his personal record against the Oilers to 16-4-1 with two shutouts.

He made an all-world glove save on Ryan Strome in the second period while his team had the lead, after which both Travis Hamonic and Mark Giordano had a hand in getting the puck from harm’s way.

Smith loomed even larger in the third period, turning aside big chances from Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Connor McDavid. The Flames were even short-handed for the final 1:53 of the game, during which Smith was aided in a big way with blocks provided by Matt Stajan.

Calgary’s Matthew Tkachuk missed the game due to an upper-body injury.

McDavid had his seven-game point streak was snapped.

Talbot made 31 saves for the Oilers.

Oilers forward Mike Cammalleri, a former Flame, played his 900th career NHL game.

—Field Level Media

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