Sports

Oilers erase early deficit, come back to beat Flames 4-3 in shootout

The Edmonton Oilers celebrate the shootout win over the Calgary Flames during NHL action in Edmonton, Alta., on Thursday January 25, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

The Edmonton Oilers celebrate the shootout win over the Calgary Flames during NHL action in Edmonton, Alta., on Thursday January 25, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

EDMONTON — Connor McDavid used both his actions and his words to express his displeasure with an overtime call on Thursday.

McDavid scored the shootout winner as the Edmonton Oilers overcame a bad start to record a 4-3 victory against the Calgary Flames.

The shootout tally came after McDavid thought he had set up the winner on a goal by Ryan Strome in overtime, only to have it called back after he was charged with goaltender interference for clipping the stick of Flames goalie David Rittich on his way through the crease.

Upset that the goal was called off, McDavid was seen indicating that maybe they should check upstairs to see if his shootout winner was valid as well.

"I shouldn't have done that, but it was frustrating," said the Oilers captain. "I think everyone just wants it to be black and white, to be goaltender interference or not. I saw it on the Jumbotron and what I saw was just myself trying to make a play at the net and I was trying to get out of the way. I do avoid the goalie, but I catch his stick.

"I am glad that we were still able to get the two points and that's all that matters."

Brandon Davidson had a pair of goals and Zack Kassian also scored in regulation for the Oilers (22-24-3), who have won four of their last five games.

"It had been a month since I had played and I just wanted to keep getting better every shift," Davidson said. "It was a good win for our team and it was great to contribute."

Matthew Tkachuk had two goals and Mark Giordano also scored for the Flames (25-16-8), who have picked up at least a point in 11 straight games despite their fourth straight loss in extra time (7-0-4).

"It's so disappointing," Tkachuk said. "That wasn't a good display at all and it's unfortunate because we played a pretty good first half of the game, good enough to win in the NHL, and we just gave it up."

It didn't take long for Calgary to get on the board, scoring just 1:32 into the first period on the first shot of the contest. After a giveaway by Oilers forward Milan Lucic, Troy Brouwer chipped a bouncing puck from behind the net out front to Tkachuk, who scored his 15th goal of the season on Oilers goalie Cam Talbot.

It was the eighth time this season that the Oilers have allowed a goal on an opponent's first shot of the game.

Calgary made it 2-0 with five-and-a-half minutes to play in the opening frame, as Giordano scored on a long screen shot with an Oilers penalty on the way.

The Oilers finally got on the board with six minutes to play in the second period as a spin-around shot from a bad angle by Davidson surprised Rittich.

Edmonton tied it up just over a minute later as Kassian cashed in on the rebound from a Leon Draisaitl shot.

The Oilers took the lead five minutes into the third period as Strome fed it in front to Davidson, who scored his second goal of the game and the season.

Calgary pulled back even eight minutes into the third when Edmonton defenceman Matt Benning lost the puck behind his net, leading to Tkachuk's second goal of the game.

With the NHL All-Star game this weekend, the Flames are off until Tuesday, when they host the Vegas Golden Knights, while the Oilers don't play until next Thursday, when they welcome the Colorado Avalanche to town.

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