SPORTS

NHL: 3 stories from Monday night

02/03/2015 01:59 EST | Updated 04/04/2015 05:59 EDT
The Calgary Flames tightened up the Western Conference playoff race with a win over the Winnipeg Jets in Calgary, while the New York Rangers opened more daylight over the Florida Panthers. In San Jose, the Edmonton Oilers surprised the Sharks early and again at the end of a lengthy shootout.

Here are three stories from Monday in the NHL:

Flames take down Jets 

The two Western Conference wild card teams, the Jets and the Flames met in Calgary, separated by three points in the standings, in favour of Winnipeg. By the end of Monday night, the margin was reduced to one as the Flames skated to a 5-2 victory, and in the process, jumped over idle Vancouver into third in the Pacific Division.

Calgary's Mason Raymond broke a 1-1 tie in the second period before two more Flames found the range as Raphael Diaz and then Brandon Bollig connected on their first goals of the season to boost the lead to 4-1. For Bolling, it was his first goal in 61 games after coming to Calgary from the Chicago Blackhawks.

After Bryan Little cut the gap to two goals, Sean Monahan found the empty net to restore the three-goal margin as the Flames won their second in a row and seventh in nine.

Winnipeg, which scored on its first shot of the game, with Blake Wheeler tallying after just 69 seconds, dropped its fourth game in a row. The Jets travel to Vancouver Tuesday to meet the Canucks, who have 57 points, two less than Calgary, but hold three games in hand.

Rangers keep Panthers at bay

The Panthers got the early jump they wanted at Madison Square Garden against the Rangers as they attempted to close an eight-point gap in the Eastern Conference, but the Rangers' Rick Nash had the first and the last impact in New York's 6-3 victory.

After Aleksander Barkov put Florida on top at 4:09 of the opening period, Nash struck for a breakaway, short-handed goal at 8:49, his 30th goal of the season. Later the Rangers assumed a 3-1 lead but the Panthers came back to knot the score at 3-3 after two periods.

Dan Boyle deflected a shot at 8:10 of the third period for what proved to be the game winner and after Mats Zuccarello increased the Rangers' lead to two, Nash iced the verdict with an empty-net goal, No. 31, tying him for the NHL lead with Washington's Alex Ovechkin.

Oilers prevail in San Jose

In search of their fifth road victory of the season, the Edmonton Oilers could probably think of more hospitable arenas than San Jose's SAP Center to discover the winning touch. The Sharks had a 4-1-1 record on their latest homestand which ended with Edmonton's Monday visit. They'd also topped Edmonton in 13 of their last 14 stops in California for Monday's tilt.

A nice goal by the Oilers' Jordan Eberle tied the game in the first period and the 24-year-old gave Edmonton the lead just 22 seconds into the second period before Derek Roy increased Edmonton's advantage to 3-1.

But this game was far from over. Three San Jose goals within the first 10 minutes of the third period set up a late game-tying score by Justin Schultz, which in turn led to a lengthy shootout where Edmonton's Viktor Fasth and San Jose's Antti Niemi were nearly unbeatable.

Through 12 rounds they allowed but one goal apiece. Finally, Rob Klinkhammer ended the stalemate in the 13th round and the Oilers' had their fifth road win of the season, 5-4 in the shootout.

MORE:cbcSports