The Battle of Alberta between the Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers got off to a shocking start last night and ended with a 9-6 Flames win.
The Flames scored twice within the opening minute on goals from Elias Lindholm and Andrew Mangiapane and were up 3-0 when the Oilers pulled goaltender Mike Smith after allowing three goals on 10 shots.
The Oilers managed to regroup halfway through the second period and eventually came back to tie the game at 6 early in the third period.
Then the Flames started to pull away with two more goals for an 8-6 lead and then Matthew Tkachuk scored an empty netter with just over two minutes left in the game to secure the 9-6 win.
Tkachuk's empty net goal was also his third goal of the night for the hat trick and fans responded with hats flooding the ice.
"Thought we had a great start, second period really got away from us and then I think once we got a lead in the third we played a little bit better but we got to be better with leads and we had a four goal lead twice, that should be enough in playoffs so, we'll be better next game."
Blake Coleman, who scored two goals in the game, echo's Tkachuk's comments.
"I think it was a really good start by our team, couldn't ask for a better start but you got to have that killer mindset and you got to be able to put teams down and keep pushing them down. The good news is it's correctable, we can go back to the drawing board tomorrow and we're going to be fine. We're going to regroup, get back to our game. It's great that we got the game one win but there's a lot to dissect here and we'll get to work tomorrow."
Goaltending was a bit suspect for both teams with Flames Jacob Markstrom only stopping 22 of 28 shots. Oiler's starter Mike Smith stopped 7 of 10 shots and was replaced with Mikko Koskinen saving 32 of 37 shots he was peppered with.
Game two in the best of seven Conference semi-finals goes Friday night at 8:00 p.m. at the Saddledome.