Johnny Gaudreau scored his first goal of the pre-season and added an assist Friday to lead the Calgary Flames to a 4-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks.
Matthew Tkachuk also had a goal and an assist in Calgary’s first win of the season. Mikael Backlund and Brett Ritchie, into an empty net, also scored. The Flames started the preseason 0-2-1.
Jonah Gadjovich scored the only goal for the Canucks that fell to 1-2-0.
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Flames goalkeeper Jacob Markstrom got his first pre-season start and dismissed 14 of 15 shots over two periods. Dustin Wolf made seven saves in the third.
Vancouver’s Thatcher Demko went the distance in his first appearance before the season, stopping 27 shots.
Calgary’s offense generated far more scoring chances than it did in three previous games.
Gaudreau took advantage of a late lineup that dropped Blake Coleman off the playlist. The vacancy resulted in Gaudreau switching to a line along with Elias Lindholm and Tkachuk.
Gaudreau scored the first goal of the match at 15:18 and completed a smooth tic-tac-toe cross-ice passing sequence with Lindholm and Tkachuk. Gaudreau closed it off nicely by firing a shot under the crossbar as Demko sank across the fold.
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Calgary led 2-0 at. 3:30 in the second period on Backlund’s second goal before the season.
The sequence began with a powerful hit by Flames defender Nikita Zadorov, who lowered the shoulder of Jason Dickinson as he tried to skate the puck out of the Canucks end.
While Luke Schenn and Zack MacEwen immediately came to defend Dickenson, the game continued, and Backlund got the most out of the open ice by getting the loose puck and firing a shot past Demko.
Gadjovich’s deflection two minutes later cut the lead in half, but Tkachuk restored the pad with two goals 6:54 in the third. He nicely deflected Connor Mackey’s centering pass over Demko’s shoulder. Gaudreau had the second assist.
Just before Tkachuk’s goal, he sent Gaudreau alone in only to be denied by Demko on yet another scoring chance for the veteran left-hander who is entering the final season of his six-year contract.
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Seattle 2, Edmonton 1 (OT)
In Everett, Wash., Jared McCann scored the battle-winning goal in the overtime powerplay as the Seattle Kraken edged the Edmonton Oilers 2-1 Friday night.
McCann’s farthest corner from the right faceoff circle came 3:02 overtime when Seattle met to beat Edmonton.
Jaden Schwartz also scored for Kraken (3-1), who subsequently headed 1-0 against the third. Schwartz’s goal, his third of the preseason, came at 7:02 p.m.
Former Calgary Flames captain Mark Giordano had assistants for both Seattle goals.
Brendan Perlini, with his fourth of the season at 5:14 in the second, answered for Edmonton (2-2).
Stuart Skinner stopped 39 of 41 shots for Edmonton, while Philipp Grubauer (16-17) and Joey Daccord (9-9) split goalkeeping duties for Seattle.
The game was played in the Angel of the Winds Arena, home of the WHL’s Everett Silver Tips.
Edmonton’s scratches for the game included Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Duncan Keith, Kris Russell, Kyle Turris, Darnell Nurse and Jesse Puljujarvi.
On Saturday, Kraken hosted the Calgary Flames, where the game took place in Kent, Wash., Home of the WHL’s Seattle Thunderbirds.
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