Oilers beat Flames 3-1 for Canadian-record 13th straight victory

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CALGARY, Alberta (AP) — Sam Gagner broke a tie with a fluke goal early in the third period and the Edmonton Oilers beat the Calgary Flames 3-1 on Saturday night to break Montreal's record for the longest winning streak by a Canadian team at 13.

From below the goal line near the corner, Gagner attempted to center to Dylan Holloway in the slot, but it deflected off Flames defenseman Rasmus Andersson’s skate, ended up on the top of goalie Dan Vladar’s trapper and fluttered into the net.

Ryan McLeod and Zach Hyman — into an empty net — also scored and Stuart Skinner made 26 saves to help Edmonton break the tie with the 1967-68 Canadiens for the Canadian mark. Pittsburgh set the NHL mark of 17 in 1992-93.

“Any time you can be the only team to do anything that’s positive, that’s always exciting. Good for our group,” said captain Connor McDavid, whose points streak ended at 12 games. “It’s not something we were paying too close attention to but obviously we want to keep going.”

The Oilers improved to 26-15-1, going 23-6-0 since Kris Knoblauch took over as coach.

“When we did the 10-game streak, we eclipsed the Oilers’ ’80s teams, now it’s the old Montreal team,” said Hyman, who has 28 goals. ”When you’re in the moment you just go out there and play, but I’m sure it’ll be something cool to look back on.”

The Oilers have won nine straight on the road to break the franchise record set in 1986-87, and Skinner won his 10th straight to tie Grant Fuhr’s 1985-86 team mark.

“Just try to keep on playing the game and keep on winning games,” said Skinner, 17-2-0 in his last 19 starts. “We’re still here to battle and grind and make our way up the leaderboard.”

MacKenzie Weegar scored for Calgary and Vladar stopped 29 shots. The Flames have lost two straight after winning four in a row.

“I thought there would have been a little bit more pride there from us,” Weegar said. “It’s a big game, they’re coming into our territory, our city, I thought we would have a little bit more juice there.”

McLeod opened the scoring with late in the first, getting in alone and neatly tucking a shot inside the near goalpost as he cut across the top of the crease.

Weegar tied it early in the second. Blake Coleman put a saucer pass Weegar's stick and he steered it inside the goalpost.

“We got outcompeted, awareness was limited. There wasn’t much urgency in that first period,” Weegar said. “Vladdy stood on his head. … Battle of Alberta, there wasn’t much of a battle tonight from us.”

In the first game between the provincial rivals since the Heritage Classic in Edmonton, both teams wore their same retro look from the outdoor game.

UP NEXT

Oilers: Host Columbus on Tuesday night.

Flames: Host St. Louis on Tuesday night.

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AP NHL: https://apnews.com/hub/nhl