First-round pick Bourgault scores, adds assist in Oilers pre-season win over Flames

Edmonton Oilers' William Lagesson, right, checks Calgary Flames' Martin Pospisil during third period preseason NHL hockey action in Calgary, Alta., Sunday, Sept. 26, 2021. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh )

Derek Ryan and first-round draft pick Xavier Bourgault had a goal and an assist each on Sunday night as the Edmonton Oilers opened the pre-season with a dominant 4-0 win over the Calgary Flames.

After a scoreless first period, Edmonton blew the game open with four straight in the second.

The 2021 first-rounder Bourgault set up Ryan's goal at 6:20 on the power play, which made it 2-0. Eight minutes later, Ryan returned the favour and set up Bourgault to make it 3-0.

Colton Sceviour, the third member of that line who is at camp on a professional tryout, had two assists.

James Hamblin and Brendan Perlini also scored for the Oilers.

Edmonton outshot Calgary 49-15 in the first game with fans at the Saddledome since the Flames played Vegas on March 8, 2020. But there were plenty of empty seats with the estimated crowd size around half of the normal capacity of 19,289.

In the first pre-season game for both teams, there was a lack of star power dressed from either side.

Calgary scratched its top two lines in camp, top defence pairing, and No. 1 goaltender Jacob Markstrom. The Oilers line-up - without Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl among many other regulars -- boasted even less experience.

Flames veterans who did dress included Mikael Backlund and Milan Lucic. The latter was in the penalty box serving a four-minute roughing penalty for punching Devin Shore in the head twice, when Ryan walked out of the corner and beat starting goaltender Dan Vladar.

Ryan, 34, signed with Edmonton this past off-season as a free agent after playing the past three seasons with the Flames.

The Oilers made it 4-0 at 17:42 of the second when Perlini scored on his own rebound as he broke in off the left side.

Both teams split their goaltending. After Vladar was beaten twice on 23 shots, Adam Werner finished up for Calgary, making 24 stops.

For the Oilers, starter Stuart Skinner was perfect in his half of game action, stopping all eight shots he faced. Ilya Konovalov made seven saves in relief.

Another first-round pick with a strong game for the Oilers was defenceman Evan Bouchard, who led both teams with six shots while logging 22:05 in ice time and finishing a plus-2.

Selected 10th overall in 2018, the 21-year-old got into 14 games with Edmonton last season. He looks to make the jump to being a fixture in the line-up this year.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 26, 2021