Johnny Hockey set the tone for Calgary in Game 4 against Anaheim by skating through four different Ducks to set up a Sean Monahan goal.
The Washington Capitals and New York Rangers fought tooth-and-nail to produce a goal each and send Game 5 to overtime Friday night. The Anaheim Ducks and the Calgary Flames? They needed, oh, four-and-a-half minutes to find twine once apiece.
Jakob Silfverberg opened the scoring for Anaheim 3:58 in. Just 39 seconds later, though, Calgary answered in a big way via its top line. The Ducks have a size advantage over the Flames, no doubt, but the Flames have the edge in…shiftiness. Watch as Johnny Gaudreau dangles every Duck in sight:
Especially impressive is how Gaudreau lights up young, smooth skating Hampus Lindholm. You might be able to walk through Lindholm, but very few players can walk around a defenseman with that skill set.
The first period bonanza continued after that when bruiser Micheal Ferland, returning to Calgary’s lineup after missing Games 2 and 3 with an upper-body injury, blasted a slap shot past Frederik Andersen to give Calgary a 2-1 lead. So, after 5:44, this game equalled the total offense in Washington and New York’s Game 5 war of attrition. Go figure.
Matt Larkin is an associate editor at The Hockey News and a regular contributor to the thn.com Post-To-Post blog. For more great profiles, news and views from the world of hockey, subscribe to The Hockey News magazine. Follow Matt Larkin on Twitter at @THNMattLarkin