April 18 2014 10:04AM
One of the biggest rallying cries for how the Flames have improved over the season, at least in terms of their work ethic, has been the sheer amount of one-goal games they've taken part in this past season. In fact, the Flames played in 49 games decided by a goal, tying the NHL record.
But how did all these one-goal games come about? And what does the record really mean?
The Flames won 25 one-goal games. Splitting them up into third period scenarios, you get this:
- Twice, the Flames led by two after 40 and prevented a full comeback (but let them get close).
- Twice, the Flames led by one after 40 and shut down opponents in the third.
- Twice, the Flames led by one after 40 and scored enough to maintain the lead.
- Seven times, the Flames led by one after 40, blew the lead, but won in OT/shootout
- Four times, the Flames were tied after 40 and won the game outright in the third.
- Four times, the Flames were tied after 40 and won the game in OT/shootout.
- Most impressively, four times the Flames trailed by two after 40, but won the game (granted, three times that was in a shootout).
- Three times, the Flames led by one after 40 and blew the lead.
- Two more times, they blew the lead but lost in OT/shootout and at least got a point.
- Six times, the Flames entered the third tied and lost the game.
- Three more times, they lost in OT/shootout after being tied through 40 minutes.
- Three times, the Flames entered the third down by one and couldn't close the gap.
- One other time, they did close the gap but lost in the shootout.
- Four times, the Flames trailed by two and made it a one-goal game.
- One other time, they trailed by two, forced OT but lost.
- Once, they trailed by three goals after 40 and nearly came back to tie it.
A few take-aways.
- The term "blew the lead" appears too much here (12 times). One-goal leads were rarely safe for this group, which obviously needs to change. Multi-goal leads were rarer, but much safer.
- The team had mixed results when tied heading to the third: eight wins, nine losses (three in OT). Good teams win in the third.
- But hey, the team's "never say die" attitude is evident here: 10 comebacks from two-goal deficits, with half of them resulting in the team getting points (and the other five being a 27th-place team making it close).
In summation, the "49 one-goal games" record both praises and condemns the Calgary Flames. They had a lot of comebacks, but they also weren't fantastic with third-period leads.