Brendan Morrison scored two goals, Alex Tanguay netted the shootout winner, and the Flames escaped with a 5-4 victory against the resilient Oilers on Tuesday night in a game Calgary led by three goals.
"We didn't play a smart third, but we won and it's a big two points," Morrison said.
The Flames looked in control when they led 4-1 late in the second period, but that cushion was erased by the Oilers' furious comeback that began with Jordan Eberle's goal with 17 seconds remaining in the frame.
"It hasn't been the strongest part of my game," Kiprusoff said of past shootout struggles. "That's one thing we talked about after last year. We need every point we can get. I've tried to be better on that and tried to practice it a little more than I had been doing."
Tanguay sent the sellout crowd home happy, firing a shot under the crossbar on the Flames' second shot after Niklas Hagman was stopped on Calgary's first try.
"You saw how deep he was in the net. When the goalie is that deep, usually there's going to be a little bit more to shoot at," Tanguay said.
"I didn't think Miikka had one of his stronger games here, but he's not going to be perfect every night, either," Flames coach Brent Sutter said of his goalie, who came into the game with shutouts in two of his previous three starts. "You have to find ways to overcome that when your goaltender is not as sharp as you need him to be. But in the shootout he was rock solid."
It doesn't get any easier for the Oilers, who will play seven of the next nine on the road. The Oilers are 2-22-3 in their past 27 away games, dating to mid-December of last season.
"The second period was not our best. We were all over the ice, and teams are going to expose us and that's exactly what they did," Gilbert said. "We were fortunate that we were only down 4-2. That goal at the end of the second period was huge for us."
Looking like a completely different team, the young Oilers outshot Calgary 17-10 in the third period.
Edmonton cut the deficit to 4-3 at 6:52. Paajarvi, another of the Oilers rookies, took a pass from Andrew Cogliano and bowled his way to the net with the puck deflecting in off the arm of Kiprusoff.
"You have to play a full 60 minutes, but the way we ended it, that's the kind of heart we want out of our guys in this locker room," Gilbert said. "We gave it all we had, but unfortunately some early goals really cost us in the end."
Morrison opened the scoring during a power play at 5:52, ripping a slap shot past Nikolai Khabibulin from the blue line.
The Flames led 2-1 after the first period and increased their lead on goals by Glencross at 2:02 and Morrison at 9:48. Morrison's goal was Calgary's NHL-leading third short-handed tally.
After being stopped on a short-handed breakaway from his blue line earlier in the period, Morrison got an identical opportunity. This time he beat Khabibulin high on the blocker side.
Edmonton entered 9 for 18 on the penalty kill over its previous four games, and the percentage got worse when the Oilers allowed goals both times they were short-handed in the first.
"We just can't seem to put it together," Oilers coach Tom Renney said. "But it's not a matter of throwing your arms up in the air and asking what's going on, it's a matter of sticking with it."
- Foster left the game in the second period because of a groin injury and didn't return. No update on his condition was provided.
- The Alberta rivals won't meet again until Jan. 1.
- It was Morrison's first two-goal game since Dec. 23, 2008, when he scored twice for Anaheim in a 4-3 loss at Calgary.
- Flames D Steve Staios returned to the lineup after sitting out two games.
- Calgary C Olli Jokinen played in his 900th NHL game.
- Khabibulin joined Dallas' Kari Lehtonen and Montreal's Carey Price as the only goalies to play every minute of his team's games this season.