Photo Credit: Sergei Belski / USA Today Sports

Post-Game: Flames drop Penticton opener to Oilers

The opening game of the Young Stars Classic tournament was basically two games for the Calgary Flames. In the first two periods (and change), the Flames played a structured, poised game against the Edmonton Oilers. Then a couple bounces and a couple goals went against them and everything fell apart.

It’s a shame, too, because the final 4-2 score (for Edmonton) really doesn’t reflect how well either team played.

The Rundown

The first period was as sloppy and disjointed as September prospect hockey can get, but despite a series of power plays neither team managed a goal. Shots were 11-8 Calgary, and the highlights were a couple big hits by Josh Healey (who else?) on Joseph Gambardella and by Glenn Gawdin on Trey Fix-Wolansky.

The Flames took control in the second. Juuso Valimaki opened the scoring with a nice wrister through traffic.

Chad Butcher tied things up with Josh Healey in the penalty box, as a series of weird bounces ended with a rebound right on Butcher’s stick for a tap-in goal and a tied game. Calgary answered back before the period was up, though, as Mark Jankowski made it 2-1 with a nice wrister off the rush.

Shots were 8-6 Edmonton.

Things well apart in the third. After the Flames were robbed on a nice passing play by Matthew Phillips, the puck went the other way and Butcher beat Tyler Parsons on a breakaway to make it 2-2. Immediately after, Evan Polei tipped a shot past Parsons to make it 3-2. Finally, Kirill Maksimov took advantage of a defensive giveaway by the Flames in their own end and beat Parsons with a wrister from the top of the circles to make it 4-2. The Flames pressed late, but couldn’t generate enough clean chances – and Dylan Wells was very sharp in the Edmonton net. Shots were 11-9 Flames in the third.

Why The Flames Lost

They folded like a house of cards when the Oilers scored early in the third. The Oilers pushed and the Flames couldn’t muster up much of a push back until late in the game, when it was too late.

It also doesn’t hurt that when the game was on the line, Wells was better than Parsons. You can’t blame Parsons for any of the three third period goals, but you’d hope he could mix in a save on one of those three with the game on the line.

Red Warrior

Let’s go with Jankowski, who was a good puck distributor on the power play and scored a nice goal. The whole top five were good, though: Valimaki and Rasmus Andersson on the blueline with Jankowski, Spencer Foo and Andrew Mangiapane up front.

This and That

Wearing the alternate captain’s As for the Flames were Kayle Doetzel, Hunter Smith and Jankowski. Nick Schneider dressed as backup goaltender.

Next Up

The Flames are off tomorrow, then back at it at Sunday at 3 p.m. when they face the Vancouver Canucks.

  • Mullen7

    Did the play-by-play (or lack thereof) on FB drive anyone else crazy? The trend of having two guys just sit and chat, throwing out factoids, instead of calling the game is annoying – especially when there are so many unfamiliar numbers/players. It’s like having two color commentators. This seems to be happening more and more at the NHL level as well. It’s like they are having their own conversation interrupted occasionally by happenings on the ice.

  • Sven

    I didn’t watch the game nor did I listen to it-

    and the outcome is inconsequential

    but I’m hoping that two 23 year olds start the season in Calgary this year
    (Jankowski and Foo)

    and the comments of many of those that watched seem to suggest that this may be a possibility…….

      • Sven

        as I said I didnt watch the game…….

        “Mark Jankowski made it 2-1 with a nice wrister off the rush.”

        “Red Warrior Let’s go with Jankowski, who was a good puck distributor on the power play and scored a nice goal. The whole top five were good, though: Valimaki and Rasmus Andersson on the blueline with Jankowski, Spencer Foo and Andrew Mangiapane up front.”

        “Some good signs , Jankowski showed he is a steady player. Foo looked very good at times.”

         “all the guys we needed to do well succeeded (Vali, Janko, Foo),”

        “Beauty goals by butcher (best player that game) and jankowski.”

        “Jankowski has the skills to be in the bigs”

        “Foo can back check, nice dive on that 2on 1”

        “Jankowski…huge frame, highly skilled with sweet hands.”

        “Jankowski was pretty strong throughout. Really bulked up and plays smart with and without the puck, the best Flame by far. Foo made a few good plays”

        “Janko looked good. Was winning face offs, showed his quick hands. Has an underrated shot. If he stays consistent, he is ready for the big leagues.”

        “Foo reminds me a lot of Jooris with more upside. Liked his defensive commitment.”

        I” thought Jankowski was the best Flame. He was working the PP very well from the side wall and had several excellent wrist shots from in close. He also had pretty good positioning without the puck and wasn’t afraid to carry the puck up ice.”

        “It was only one game, but Jankowski certainly redeemed himself well, as well as Valimaki and Andersson. Foo has his chances too.”

        “We may have something in Jankowski and Foo”

        but are you ok if I choose to ignore your thoughts and accept the opinions of the dozen or so individuals who seem to disagree with you?

        • Raffydog

          Unlike most, I look at things critically, and don’t gush over someone just because they wear a Flames jersey. So believe me when I say, Foo was practically invisible out there, and the only thing that stuck out to me about Jankowski was how slow he is.

          • cberg

            Raffydog your comments may reflect your views but the vast majority of others think otherwise. I’m guessing you believe Butcher had a great game, versus Foo who did nothing? Butcher seemed to be around the puck all night and finished twice with great shots high on the blocker side (1 a clear-cut breakaway and once on the PP with a puck that dropped at his feet).

            Foo was very good on at least 3 occasions. One an end to end rush ending with a shot the goalie just tipped over the net, a second break to the net off a cycle with a shot which hit the goalie in the mask and a great defensive play to break up a 2 versus 1 while on the PP. Overall I thought he did well and am interested to see more, and I’d say the difference between him and Butcher was the goalie.

          • revingev

            Raffydog, Not sure what game you watched with Spencer Foo but he was all over the plays and on the plus side. I’m an Oiler fan and even I can see he played well. His finish to me needs some work. I think between Foo and Jankowski will be vying for the same spot as Curtis Lazar so its likely both end up starting in the AHL barring injury. Just an outside observation but nothing wrong with a good cupboard ready for call-ups in case of injury.

  • everton fc

    I watched the whole game. My observations;

    Our defence let Parsons down. Parsons is very good, but all over the place. Mangiapane, Phillips, Jankowski, Fischer… Were impact players. I was amazed at both Mangiapane’s maturity and everything about Phillips. Jankowski is beyond Penticton. The first goal wouldn’t have happened w/o Fisher’s smart check, and ability to get into position to make the assist. He hit everything that moved, but in a smart, positional way, most shifts. To see him w/Phillips at the end – put them together, next game.

    Valimaki looks good, but I have a different opinion on Andersson, for this game. He’s noticeable for good and bad plays. He gets beat, at times. Kylington may have the higher ceiling.

    Pollock had a lot of opportunities, but it appears to me he hasn’t the hands to be a scorer at “the next level”, which for him, may be the “A”. Still, to me, he was at least noticeable. I like Healey and Fischer a lot.

    Hunter Smith is worthless. Dube looked all over the place, but he “gives” every shift. Ollas-Mattson didn’t do much for me. Foo works hard, and I like him – but the one breakaway out of the box vs. the defender… He didn’t seem to have “next level” speed. He’s a 3rd/4th line mucker, at best. He looked inferior w/Mangiapane and Jankowski.

    For the Oilers;

    Wells looked good. Yamamoto should make the team out of camp. Butcher’s a better prospect than Foo, to my eyes.

    • Off the wall

      Interesting observations Everton.

      I agree about the impact players.

      I don’t know if Mattson is adjusting to the game here yet. He got burned out of position a few times and didn’t cover his man, that lead to the tip -in goal.

      Foo will need to crank it up a notch if he hopes to get noticed.
      He did have a great defensive side to his game, which is something I didn’t expect from him.

      Parsons is quite unorthodoxed in his play- but quick laterally and up and down. I like his overall ability, probably a bit rusty.

      • HOCKEY83

        Parsons move incredibly fast from side to side even when he was off balanced. He made a few beauty saves just throwing his entire body over from one side to the other. Foo made great passes under pressure in the offensive zone and played great defensively as well. Jankowski was all around very good. It was a boring game until Edmonton scored 3 quick ones and then it just became a bad effort.

    • smatic10

      I’ll have a go.

      Great hands. Great speed. Forechecks really well for someone who isn’t that big. Great distributor of the puck with an underrated shot. Intelligent player. Went from a point per game player in 65 games to a 1.375 PPG with only 40 games played in Kelowna (he likely would have improved even more).
      He was relatively unknown going into the world juniors camp and still won a spot. He went on to become part of the most consistent line at the WJC.
      He projects to be a guy you can play on the PP and PK.

      I personally have high hopes that he’ll pan out. And when he does, we can consider that a successful 2nd round pick.

      • Hockeyfan6778

        I agree. Good second round pick. Even if he only turns out to bottom 6 like most are projecting him that’s better then 60% of the second round picks that don’t make it at all.

    • HOCKEY83

      Dube and Parsons were the 2 players I was hoping they’d pick in the second round. Dube is almost always the hardest working player on the ice whether he’s on the scoreboard or not. He’s a grinder and he has talent.

  • Intercourse the Penguins

    Man, is Janko’s stick ever long. How does he dangle with that thing? I would have to choke way up on that tool. I would need like, 3 hands. Plus it curves the wrong way. But , you know what they say ,”it’s a hard shot so shoot hard.”

  • McRib

    Of the drafted talent at this tournament the Flames have arguabley the deepest crop I don’t think anyone even the most diehard Oilers fans would disagree, but I am not a big fan of all the invites they have brought in, as it has left us with a fairly shallow roster.

    It’s just a preseason tournament so not that big of a deal, but if they brought in inivites like Davis Koch or Chad Butcher it would have been game over for the other teams.

    I still don’t know how Davis Koch didn’t get drafted last year, he is going to be a 85+ point guys next year for the Oil Kings. He reminds me of Adam Brooks in the sense that he took awhile to get his career going, but he is going to be a stud from here on out at least at the WHL level.

    • McRib

      For how much the Flames watched the Tigers last year (Fischer, Rassell), you’d think they would have been all over Butcher who was a stud every time I watched MH.

    • revingev

      Your right, I agree with ya. Oilers brought several INVITES and they played well last night. There INVITES and AHL signed guys won this game in this Young Stars game

  • Chucky

    Play by play, those guys called the game for about 50 seconds out of 60 minutes. They may not have realized that there was a game going on and a lot of players with unfamiliar numbers.
    Camera work and video quality was a little better than a cell phone but not much. My cell phone has slow motion but the coverage did not.
    The ice, sometimes it looked like they were playing with ball the puck was bouncing so much.
    Hunter Smith, slow and no strength, if he cannot play like a big man no point in showing up.
    Foo has some jump and intensity.
    Parsons is quick but seemed to lose the puck sometimes
    Healey some nice hits without putting himself out of position
    Really good
    Valimaki looked like he has real potential, sees the ice well and made smart plays
    Jankowski, good faceoff performance, good defensive responsibility, opportunistic but most notable was his ability to control the play. No doubt NHL ready between Bennett and Versteeg.
    Even on a Flames site we need to recognize that Butcher is a quick opportunist with good hands that could hurt in the future and Wells had a great game.
    Without commenting on Huska as a coach, I am not sure that the point was to win but to see everybody in different situations. That is the reason the response to Butcher’s second goal was not Mangiapane, Jankowski, Foo, Anderson and Valimaki.

    • cberg

      Excellent overall read on the game. I believe the game was actually called by Loubardias after 6pm on the radio (F960, I forgot to listen) so I’ll have to check to see what they are doing tomorrow and Monday.

    • FlamesFanOtherCity

      As fun as it is to watch these game, the reality is that they are young players playing each other. We know what most of the players are capable from AHL or NCAA results. Janko and Mangiapane were what I expected to see; basically NHL ready. Foo was tireless and all over the place. Andersson was a bit rusty from finishing the season on the Flames team eating popcorn. Valimaki was really good for that type of competition. Very smart. Philips looks like a goal scorer.

      I don’t have anything bad to say about Butcher. He’s signed to an AHL deal. Remains to be seen if he can make t to the NHL, as we have seen guys like Shore and Agostino score tons in the AHL and not make an impact.

  • everton fc

    I am somewhat surprised at the positive posts on Andersson’s game last evening. I thought he made some mistakes, and got beat a few times. He’s not NHL-ready.

    Again, to my eyes, the players who made the most positive impact; Phillips, Mangiapane, Jankowski, Fischer, Parsons, Valimaki.

    Foo is another who played hard, but seemed inferior to his linemates. He also seemed to lack that next gear, in terms of skating (Phillips does not, nor do the other guys I mentioned above). Foo is also not NHL-ready.

    Would like to see more of both Rassell and Gawdin.

    • WillyWonka

      I have to agree completely on all counts. was quite pleased with the play of Jankowski, Mange, Phillips, Fischer. Foo didn’t make as big an impression as I’d hoped. Parsons was interesting to watch… this guy is strung tighter than a fiddle. lots of raw tools, needs refining

  • Raffydog

    I’m no Oilers fan but I do love a good joke. I find it hilarious that all summer so many FN posters were going on and on about how great the Flames prospects are, and how bright the future is cause we have so many prospects that are going to thrive in the NHL, and we have the greatest depth ever. And then mocking Oiler fans for their lack of prospects, and they have nothing in the cupboards, nobody who will ever make the NHL. Then last night our prospects play one another, and the Oilers destroy the Flames prospects. Now suddenly it doesn’t matter, it’s just an exhibition game, doesn’t mean anything. But you know if the Flames won, then you all would’ve been on here saying, best prospects ever, greatest prospects in the league, Oilers got no future. And one other thing, if Parsons is our goalie of the future, I’m betting BT is regretting not going after Grubauer, and Rantaa now, cause he looked terrible

    • Flaming1

      That is also the one thing that stands out to me too . If the Flames win it’s “look at how great we are ” but if we lose it’s “don’t worry it’s just an exhibition game.” flaky and fickle fan base to say the least.
      Just saying let’s not get ahead of ourselves here.We got a lot of hockey left to play.

      • Hockeyfan6778

        Ummm well actually I’ve never done either. Nor have most of my flames friends. Your kind of bulking the majority with the manority.

        And those same things happen with every fan base. Yes And even your precious oilers.

    • supra steve

      You are 100% correct about the group of dolts that have been playing the season inside their own heads all summer, dreaming of future glory resulting from prospects with either zero or very limited NHL experience.
      Dreaming that a freshly drafted 18yr old D man (child) might come into camp and land a full time NHL spot, or that Kylington or Andersson might be ready by now. Ridiculous.

      Even more ridiculous is your statement, “the Oilers destroy the Flames prospects”. They are dreaming of the future, and no one can know the future, so somewhat forgivable. You…you are judging the recent past, and doing it so horribly inaccurately that it makes it clear to all that you are worse than the dolts.

    • WillyWonka

      which Oiler prospects are you talking about? most were walk on’s, not Oiler prospects including butcher. Are you suggesting Oiler prospect pool is deeper because of the showing in this game or what

      • revingev

        In all fairness while Butcher is not a prospect, he is signed by their AHL team to a AHL contract so he wasn’t a walk on. Most were not walk on;s even though their was a few more then normal. I may be wrong but could you name the INVITES (walk ons) who made an impact last night?

    • Carl the tooth

      We will see taffy dog 🐶. 1 game .if we went by one game the season was over first game last year vs Edm (or first month for that matter). We would have missed playoffs and grossman with 80 games played in a flames jersey . But 1 game is not the case it’s 82 games then playoffs and another 82 games etc .the prospect games out comes never hold much weight it’s more about individual performance.

    • Hockeyfan6778

      Lol because 1 exhibition game Changes everything? Calgary still has depth in prospects. Belarus beat Sweden once. But they are far inferior to Sweden.

      Plus you described how every fan base is. You heard nothing from oilers fans for 10 years other them present doesn’t matter they were better in the past. One good season now all the bandwagon jumpers are Saying how all that matters is this year and the last 10 doesn’t mean anything.

    • HOCKEY83

      Obviously it means something to you. you really seem to be taking it badly. You always seem so angry at hockey. Everyone at FN here seems ok with the loss and evaluating all players even on the oilers side. As far as I can read everyone still is saying the Flames have the best prospects regardless of the loss. You seem to be incredibly hockey stupid with most of your comments. There’s not a professional hockey pundit who doesn’t think that Parsons is the best goalie prospect in the world at the moment. It’s just a really low hockey IQ comment…I mean it’s so stupid wrong that it seems you must just say this stuff for the reaction to it.

  • freethe flames

    My comments on watching the game last night: listening to Principe is painful he is such a homer and Patty is just bad. Now about the players; first the Oiler’s Butcher 2 goals and had a coupe of other quality chances and Yammamoto is both fast and quick after that for me no one really stood out. For the Flames Janko and Magpie were good but not great (I probably had the bar set to high for game 1), Foo was okay, Healey was as advertised, Phillips was okay as was Parsons. Valimaki scored a goal but after that I really did not notice him, Andersson needs to get his feet moving. After that no one stood out; Gawdwin had a hit but none of the other tryout players did anything. Hunter Smith is bad and Huska using him on the PP and PK is questionable at best.

  • Raffydog

    Jankowski looks like a lumbering Frankenstein monster on skates. He’s so slow and stiff, can the guy not bend his knees or elbows? No way that guy should ever be in the NHL

    • WillyWonka

      everyone is entitled to their opinion, regardless of whether it is literally just BS troll bait or actually something intelligent. yours of course fits the fist category. but thanks for thinking of us.

    • oilcanboyd

      I sincerely hope the oil startups win all three games. Then these trolls can stand on their rooftops and crow about how their drafting is the best in the NHL. Sign Butcher to a 6 year, $6 million contract! Then lose to Smith an the Flames 3-0 in the Season opener….

      • Hockeyfan6778

        Haha like is been said this tournament doesn’t show anything about who had the best “drafting. Also not sure where you get best drafting from but any one who knows hockey had to agree we definitely have had better drafting of late.

    • oilcanboyd

      That may be your biased opinion, but Janko can win faceoffs, unlike the Oilers who were 30th in the NHL in faceoff wins, thanks to McJesus and his 43% rating…..How can he a great Centre when he is that lousy in the faceoff circle?

    • Carl the tooth

      Lol Jankowski is pivot centre like joe Thornton. He’s not lighting. He’s not flashy . But he is definitely a NHL player . Taffy dog 🐶 don’t scout players your aweful at it .

      • Carl the tooth

        When your always in the right position and making the right play I guess jankowski didn’t need to skate fast it’s not like anyone can knock him off the puck anyway .(Raffy dog 🐶)

    • FlamesFanOtherCity

      Nothing changes during a prospects tourney. I think they said the Flames prospects haven’t won against the Oilers since 2013 or 14, yet the Oilers real team hadn’t beat the Flames in a season series except for one year in the last 10.

  • freethe flames

    Changes I would like to see to Sundays line up: first sit all the tryouts who played except Gawdin. Sit Smith. Move Ruzica up to the 2nd line and Pollock down, switch Phillips with Foo. (Do they actually practice today?)

  • Derzie

    Losing to Edmonton in any form is not a good thing. This game showed that we overrate our players due to familiarity. We are losing the BOA on the farm and on the big club and that’s not at all good.

  • madjam

    The game was speedy , closely contested and entertaining . Most notable players on both teams had good moments , but as expected lack of consistency was lax . You can expect that in these type early tourneys . Oilers defence better than expected and kept them in the game control . Flames defence had a rough night controlling the Oiler transition game , and were on their heels a lot of the time , and eventually that pressure led to the Oilers winning the game . Let us see if Flames hopefuls can be more consistent next game .

  • The Sultan

    Well, I can’t say I know what’s going to happen in the regular season, but if I were a betting man I’d be putting money down on Jankowski scoring his first NHL goal this year.

    That day will be a glorious day.

  • Oil4Brains

    Jankowski looks big but really really slow. A cow on skies would be faster. 1 round pick Drafted 6yrs he should already be in the NHL but sadly he will be a UFA before that happens.

    Other takeaways; Butcher >>>> Foo and Yammer is already faster than Jenny Hobbit.