Cam Tucker

Oilers come roaring back, dominate overtime to defeat Sharks

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What else was Martin Jones supposed to do?

The San Jose Sharks goalie had played out of his mind, especially in overtime, making a number of unbelievable saves as the Edmonton Oilers applied relentless pressure in search of the winner.

Of the saves Jones made, his best came off Connor McDavid on a two-on-one rush — a game-saving stop at the time.

Jones came sprawling across the crease in desperation to make a spectacular left-pad stop on the Oilers star. It gave his Sharks teammates a chance to find their legs again.

But that never happened. San Jose didn’t register its first overtime shot until after the midway point of the period.

The Oilers dominated the overtime and finally ended it on a goal from David Desharnais, taking a 4-3 win and a 3-2 series lead. That puts the defending Western Conference champs on the brink of elimination in the opening round.

Edmonton had 14 shots on goal in overtime. San Jose? Only two. It was completely lopsided.

The Sharks now need a win in Game 6 to force a seventh and deciding game, after they were 2:46 away from winning Thursday’s contest in regulation and instead sending this series back to San Jose with the chance to close out the Oilers.

Instead, the Oilers came roaring back, erasing a two-goal deficit. It started with a massive McDavid hit on Marcus Sorensen, picked up momentum on a Mark Letestu goal late in the second period and continued with an Oscar Klefbom rocket of a slap shot off the post and in to tie the game late in regulation.

A big question heading into Thursday was how would the Oilers respond after such a bad loss in Game 4? They had a great start in Game 5, then watched as San Jose took over on the score board with three straight goals.

But every time the Oilers have been forced to respond after a bad game (think back to their win in Game 2 after opening the series with a loss, and then the same situation from Games 4 and 5), they’ve been up to the challenge so far.

“It’s a cliche, but we played on our toes tonight,” said Oilers coach Todd McLellan. “We were aggressively hunting pucks.”

Video: McDavid crushes Sharks’ Sorensen with massive open-ice hit

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Connor McDavid hasn’t scored since Game 2 of this series against San Jose, so you can bet he’s probably getting a tad frustrated.

He decided to take that out on Sharks’ forward Marcus Sorensen with a massive open-ice hit in the second period of Game 5 on Thursday.

With the Oilers trailing by two goals, McDavid had Sorensen lined up and delivered contact, sending him sprawling to the ice.

The hit occurred a split second after Sorensen attempted a pass up the ice. The Sharks bench may have thought that was a possible penalty for interference, but officials decided otherwise.

 

 

Rangers win OT thriller, put Habs on brink of elimination

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The New York Rangers will head back to Madison Square Garden for Game 6 of their first round series with the opportunity to eliminate the Montreal Canadiens.

Mika Zibanejad scored the winner, capping off an overtime period in which the Rangers previously had numerous chances but either couldn’t beat Carey Price or couldn’t control loose pucks amidst the chaos in front of the Habs net.

But in the end, Zibanejad capitalized and New York took an emotionally charged — dirty at times — Game 5 by a final score of 3-2.

The Habs, who received an inspired performance from Brendan Gallagher, who scored and had four hits and five shots on goal, had the lead late in the second period but couldn’t maintain it.

Brady Skjei scored the tying goal with 1:32 left in the second period and the Habs managed only 10 shots on goal in the third period and OT.

While he wasn’t as busy in the second half of the game, credit also has to go to Henrik Lundqvist.

In another epic battle between the goalies, Lundqvist made a huge pad save while facing Max Pacioretty on a third-period breakaway and the game tied.

And when overtime began, it was the Rangers controlling the pace.

Game 6 goes Saturday in New York.

Report: NHL linesman Don Henderson files $10.25M lawsuit against Dennis Wideman

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Almost 15 months after Dennis Wideman knocked NHL linesman Don Henderson over with an apparent cross check, there has been another development in the infamous case.

Per TSN’s Rick Westhead, Henderson has filed in a Calgary court a $10.25 million lawsuit against Wideman. The report also states that the Flames are listed as defendants, as well.

More from TSN:

According to his lawsuit, Henderson suffered injuries to his head, neck back, shoulder, and right knee. He also allegedly suffered a concussion, pain, numbness and tingling in his right arm and hand, shock anxiety and depression, headaches and permanent and partial disability.

None of the allegations have been proven in court. No statements of defence have been filed. A Flames spokesperson did not immediately reply to an email seeking comment.

The incident occurred during a game between the Flames and Nashville Predators on Jan. 27, 2016, leading to litigation between the various parties for more than a year. The league suspended Wideman for 20 games.

The length of the suspension was eventually reduced on appeal, leading the league to file a suit in order to get the ban restored to 20 games.

However, last month, U.S. District Judge Alison Nathan ruled in favor of Wideman and the NHLPA, ultimately keeping the suspension at 10 games — much to the disappointment of the NHL.

Video: Shaw and Smith drop the gloves, tempers flare between Habs, Rangers

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Quite an eventful first period between the Montreal Canadiens and New York Rangers.

With the series tied 2-2 and Game 5 in Montreal on Thursday, tempers were short in the opening 20 minutes. A massive scrum started in front of Henrik Lundqvist, leading to Andrew Shaw and Brendan Smith dropping the gloves in a spirited fight inside the Rangers’ zone.

More bad blood as the period ended with Shea Weber and Rick Nash getting tied up beside Carey Price.

The Habs jumped out to a 2-1 lead after the first period. Artturi Lehkonen opened the scoring for Montreal, and Brendan Gallagher restored the Habs’ lead 24 seconds after a short-handed goal from Rangers forward Jesper Fast.

It certainly gave the Habs a boost when Price made an absolutely amazing left-pad save on Mats Zuccarello just 40 seconds into the game.