Timely scoring pushes Detroit past Calgary, Red Wings beat Flames 5-4 in OT

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Detroit 5, Calgary 4 (OT)

It might be a bit of a cliche, but it seems at least partially true: good teams find ways to win games while bad teams often “snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.”

The Flames held a 4-2 lead midway through the third period, only to let the game slip through their fingers. Henrik Zetterberg scored the next two goals, including one on the power play while Detroit’s net was empty with just 3.4 seconds left in the game. After that, Nicklas Lidstrom scored the overtime game-winner to help the Red Wings steal one at home.

Pavel Datsyuk (one goal, two assists) and Brian Rafalski (three assists) also stepped up for Detroit, as the team’s power play made a big impact (three goals on seven opportunities).

The Flames might kick themselves for letting this one go, but that doesn’t mean that their team lacked solid performances in their own right. Jarome Iginla continued the momentum he began with a hat trick against Chicago by scoring two goals and adding an assist. Miikka Kiprusoff also played well in this contest, stopping 33 out of 38 shots in a losing effort.

Detroit improved their home record to a staggering 9-1-2 while they also widened their division lead over the St. Louis Blues. Meanwhile, Calgary is showing signs of life, but the bottom line is that the only team that’s lower on the Western Conference totem pole is the lowly Edmonton Oilers.

Video: Eichel’s first career NHL goal


Didn’t take long for Jack Eichel to make his mark at the NHL level.

The No. 2 overall pick at this year’s draft scored his first-ever NHL goal in his first-ever NHL game on Thursday night, cutting Ottawa’s lead to 2-1 in the third period of Buffalo’s season-opener.

Marcus Foligno and another new Sabre, Evander Kane, registered the assists on Eichel’s marker, which came on the power play.


Tough start: Lehner knocked out of Sabres debut, won’t return

Matt Puempel, Alex Chiasson, Robin Lehner
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Chances are Robin Lehner won’t look back fondly on his first game as a Sabre.

Midway through Buffalo’s season-opener against Ottawa, Lehner — facing his old team for the first time since getting traded this summer — suffered a lower-body injury, and was forced from the contest.

During the second intermission, the Sabres ruled out Lehner for the night.

It was a difficult turn of events for 24-year-old, who admitted he was keen to go up against the Sens. He had a bit of a chip on his shoulder about his time in the Canadian capital; Lehner felt he never got a full opportunity to run with the No. 1 gig, and probably wasn’t thrilled GM Bryan Murray opted to keep Craig Anderson and Andrew Hammond instead of him.

As for tonight’s injury, details are scarce. All that’s known is the ailment was serious enough for Lehner to leave and not return, forcing backup Chad Johnson into duty.

Prior to getting hurt, Lehner had stopped 11 of 12 shots faced.