Flames strike early, beat Maple Leafs 3-0

BY foxsports • December 1, 2016

CALGARY, Alberta (AP) The Calgary Flames left the Toronto Maple Leafs behind in a hurry.

Freddie Hamilton and Kris Versteeg scored in the first minute and Chad Johnson made 39 saves in Calgary's 3-0 victory over Toronto on Wednesday night.

''Six (games) in nine nights and coming back home from New York, we were a tired club. I loved our start,'' Flames coach Glen Gulutzan said. ''And then when you get a goaltending performance that Johnny gives us, it gives you a chance.''

Hamilton one-timed a centering pass from Micheal Ferland past Jhonas Enroth high on the glove side for his first of the season 19 seconds in. Thirty seconds later, Versteeg buried his third of the season. Sean Monahan was initially stopped from the slot, but Enroth kicked the rebound to Versteeg.

''A tough start,'' Enroth said. ''Two, a little bit unlucky goals. I felt ready, but they beat me with the two first shots. The first goal, I didn't get to my position and that's on me. Maybe I was a little bit slow on the pass out and the second goal, just a bang-bang play.''

Calgary scored twice in the opening minute for the first time since March 11, 1987 against the Hartford Whalers. The last time any NHL team did it was Philadelphia against the New York Islanders on April 9, 2011.

Johnson has started eight of the last 10 games, going 6-2-0 with a 1.50 goals-against average, a .951 save percentage and a career-best three shutouts.

''Their goalie's been hot lately. He made a lot of really good saves, stood on his head,'' Toronto rookie Auston Matthews. ''I thought the second and third period, we definitely played much better in terms of creating opportunities and taking control of the play more.''

Matt Stajan also scored for Calgary.

Enroth made 26 saves.

NOTES: Toronto has lost 10 of its last 11 games in Calgary. ... Calgary's Johnny Gaudreau (broken finger) joined the team at the morning skate. He has missed nine games.

UP NEXT: At Vancouver on Saturday night.

Flames: Host Minnesota on Friday night.

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