Edmonton Oilers face an early deficit, 1-1 series draw

Calgary – Edmonton Oilers will not be denied.

Not by another bad start. Not through hard (stick) breaks or cascades of unlicensed goals.

In Game 2 of Friday’s Stanley Cup playoff series against Calgary in the Eulers’ second round, Edmonton won the required 3-3 victory over the Battle of Alberta before going home to the ice. And they did it by playing the way coach Joe Woodcroft has been preaching for weeks.

Woodcroft said, “We had some things that we didn’t get today. But I think it speaks to the flexibility and determination of our group [we came from that],” Woodcroft said. “It’s something we’ve been working on for the last three months, the ability to survive.

“I think if you walk into our room you’ll find a group of men who are convinced of our message, fully convinced of our game plan, convinced of what is needed to win in crunch time. And we are convinced. We don’t think so.” That we played by that standard in Game 1. Tonight was good for us. “

Getting to Edmonton was not easy.

The Oilers got off to a terrible start in Game 1, conceding three goals in just six minutes after losing 9-6. Friday’s tilt started in exactly the same way for the Oilers, trailing 2-0 just 6:02 in the first period. And since then, Edmonton has twice been robbed of the goals he deems fit.

On the first day, Zack Hyman felt he had a 2-2 draw under Flames netminder Jacob Markstrom and referee Chris Lee ruled the game.

Call on the ice was not the goal. Despite Hyman’s confidence – he even went to the bench to shake hands – the officers took another look and confirmed: No goal.

The words from the NHL’s Situation Room were:

The Eulers were still down 2-1. And Darnell Nurse’s broken rod on the subsequent Edmonton penalty kill helped Tyler Tofoli make a 3-1 flames early in the second.

Edmonton kept coming. Shortly after that play, Connor McDevid – who dominated from start to finish – set up a formidable set to reduce the Flames lead for Leon Dresital. But Edmonton saw that goal was withdrawn, this time after Calgary successfully challenged for goalkeeping intervention.

Fearlessly, it took McDavid less than a minute to save Calgary and score himself. 3-2 Flames.

Edmonton seemed to have complete control until Evan Bouchard’s power play goal ended the game 3-3.

“We pulled back two goals and the bounce didn’t go our way,” Hyman said. “But we got stuck in it and we fought. I think that’s a testament to our team. We’ve had a roller-coaster season where our backs were against the wall and our ability to push back is not far behind.”

And the next time Hyman scored a goal he would be counted. Edmonton was hitting a late third penalty when Hyman lit a lamp in the shorthand of what would make Edmonton stand out as a game-winning marker.

Dressital added an insurance tally to seal the victory. He and McDavid combined for five points a night, while Mike Smith made a comeback from a terrific Game 1 performance with a 37-save performance.

Now this is the best-of-five series for the Oilers – and they have the advantage of domestic ice.

“I think we deserve to win tonight’s game on our own,” Woodcroft said. “I thought we calculated the price we needed to win a game in the second round. Our competition level was excellent, our level of execution was on our side. We found a way to score a goal. Everyone is more competitive. “