Calgary, Alberta: Ryan Suter redeemed himself nicely after taking a penalty that helped Calgary take the lead in the third period.
Suter already had an assist when he got the tying goal and set up the go-ahead score to rally the Minnesota Wild to a 4-2 win over the Flames on Saturday night.
“Whenever you can help bail yourself out, it’s nice,” said Suter, whose long wrist shot at 10:33 eluded Mike Smith, who was partially screened by his own defenceman, and tied the score 2-2.
“He kinda used (Travis Hamonic) as a screen in front of me and made a pretty good shot,” Smith said.
Less than two minutes later, Suter set up fellow defenceman Jared Spurgeon, who wired a 40-foot slap shot over Smith’s shoulder and under the crossbar to give the Wild the lead.
“There was a little bit (of room),” Spurgeon said. “Our scouting staff did a good job about telling us where to shoot. I just tried to shoot it at hard as I could.”
Chris Stewart and Daniel Winnik also scored for Minnesota, and Alex Stalock stopped 35 shots — including 18 in the first period.
Sean Monahan and Kris Versteeg scored for Calgary, which totalled just three goals while losing three straight at home. Smith finished with 28 saves.
“It’s not good enough. We need to be good here,” said Versteeg. “That’s something all the best teams in the league do, they have really good home records.”
Versteeg put Calgary ahead 2-1 just 43 seconds into the third period on a two-man advantage. Suter’s slashing penalty came while they were already killing off a delay-of-game penalty for coach Bruce Boudreau’s unsuccessful offside challenge of the Flames’ tying goal with 27.5 seconds left in the second.
That goal, in which Troy Brouwer set up Monahan in the slot for his team-leading fifth goal, made it 1-1.
Smith accepted the blame for the two third-period goals he allowed.
“Ultimately, at the end there, you have to make those saves,” said Smith, who has started all eight of Calgary’s games. “You’re there to stabilise and make those saves that your teammates rely on you to make and in a close game like that, you can’t let that in from there.”
Stalock, starting in place of the resting Devan Dubnyk, kept the Wild in it in the first as Minnesota was outshot 18-8. He helped slam the door on the Flames in the end too, stopping Monahan from the slot with just over a minute left and also denying Mikael Backlund on the rebound.
N.Y. Rangers 4 Nashville 2
Philadelphia 2 Edmonton 1
Tampa Bay 7 Pittsburgh 1
N.Y. Islanders 5 San Jose 3
Buffalo 5 Boston 4
Ottawa 6 Toronto 3
Los Angeles 6 Columbus 4
Florida 4 Washington 1
Dallas 4 Carolina 3
Chicago 4 Arizona 2
Minnesota 4 Calgary 2
Vegas 3 St. Louis 2