Photo Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

Post-Game: Flames ground Hawks in overtime

The Calgary Flames closed out 2017 with another uneven game of hockey. But unlike other recent uneven games, they managed to eke out a win. The Flames got out to a 3-0 lead and then held on for dear life against the Chicago Blackhawks, who roared back to force overtime. Thanks to some heroics from their captain, the Flames finished off the calendar year with a 4-3 overtime victory.

The Rundown

The locals had tons of good chances in the first period, but couldn’t get anything past Jeff Glass. But with a late period power play and the clock winding down, a pair of head’s up plays made all the difference. Mark Giordano made a long stretch pass to Sean Monahan, who tipped the puck deep into the Chicago zone with less than 10 seconds left. Monahan chased the puck down, hucked it to the front of the net and Matthew Tkachuk jammed it in to make it 1-0. Shots were 19-7 Flames and scoring chances 10-6 Flames.

Matthew Tkachuk added another one five minutes into the second, again on the power play, redirecting a nice feed from Johnny Gaudreau to make it 2-0. Sean Monahan one-timed a gorgeous Gaudreau pass 65 seconds later to make it 3-0. Just when it seemed like the Flames would run away with it, the Blackhawks woke up and answered back with two goals in 56 seconds. Just after the Flames killed off a penalty, Jordan Oesterle’s shot (with a big Ryan Hartman screen of Mike Smith) made it through to make it 3-1. The Flames failed to clear their zone off a defensive faceoff win, and Oesterle’s shot was stopped by Jonathan Toews jammed in the rebound to make it 3-2. Chicago had many subsequent chances, but Smith stood tall. Shots were 18-12 Blackhawks, chances 14-6 Blackhawks.

The third period featured the Flames attempting to run down the clock and largely succeeding. But with the goalie pulled in Chicago’s end, Sam Bennett couldn’t quite get it to the center line before trying to score on an empty net and the Flames were called for icing. Off the faceoff win, Brandon Saad’s shot went in off a defender to make it 3-3. Shots were 12-6 Blackhawks, chances 9-4 Blackhawks.

But in overtime, the Flames responded. Tkachuk couldn’t beat Glass to complete the hat trick, but Mikael Backlund corralled the puck and fed Giordano at the point and his nifty wrister beat Glass to make it a 4-3 final.

Why The Flames Won

The Flames weren’t any great shakes at even strength, particularly as the game wore on, but their goaltending and their special teams units were just enough to make the difference.

Red Warrior

Tkachuk. He was in rare form and probably could’ve had six goals if not for Glass.

The Turning Point

The game-winner from Giordano; the right goal from the right player at the right time.

The Numbers

(Percentage stats are 5-on-5, data via Corsica.hockey)

Player Corsi
Mangiapane 66.7 50.0 0.510
Hamilton 64.4 53.3 1.025
Giordano 63.0 57.1 2.275
Monahan 61.8 58.3 2.275
Gaudreau 58.3 58.3 2.075
Ferland 58.1 58.3 0.610
Stajan 54.6 33.3 0.220
Brouwer 51.7 20.0 0.070
Jagr 45.8 50.0 -0.275
Backlund 44.1 35.7 0.765
Tkachuk 41.9 38.5 1.615
Hamonic 40.0 38.5 -0.100
Brodie 39.0 35.7 0.100
Kulak 37.9 17.7 -0.250
Hathaway 37.5 16.7 -0.300
Stone 35.5 17.7 -0.400
Bennett 32.3 16.7 -0.625
Jankowski 30.8 18.8 -0.445
Smith 1.150

This and That

It was Andrew Mangiapane’s first career NHL game and Mikael Backlund’s 500th. Mangiapane didn’t get on the scoresheet, but he was excellent for a first-timer.

Up Next

The Flames (19-16-4) have a couple days of practice ahead of them. They host the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday night.

Thanks very much for reading throughout 2017, gang. We’ll have more fun stuff headed your way in 2018.

  • RKD

    I hope 2018 brings more wins, a strong stretch of play ending up with a playoff berth. I’m hoping Jagr can stay healthy and that Mangipane stays in the line up with or without Tintin leading this club.

  • Chiz

    We need more mangiapane! A 6th round pick! Makes it a little bit more tolerable that the flames don’t have a first or second round pick this coming year. Good scouts can find hidden gems.

    • Derzie

      In his draft year, his NHLE was top 5. Because he was short, he was discounted by dopey “living in the past” scouts. Look it up. It was never in doubt that he could score in the new NHL. At least in my eyes.

  • The GREAT WW

    Happy new year Flames fans!

    And to the inbred degenerate welfare proud douche bag Oiler fans: HAVE A MCDAVID YEAR!!!!!!!
    (That goes for you too BRINGTHEFIRE2.0).


  • The GREAT WW

    Oiler fans are finally admitting that there is a dressing room issue with the Oilers.

    Drisaddle was hitting in Darnell Nurse sister and Darnell punished him.

    Kia Nurse is about as attractive as the north end of a south bound moose, I think I would rather make out with Darnell….

    You would think a $8.5 million dollar player could do better….


    • BringtheFire 2.0

      Now. He hits a ten game slump and Archie calls for a trade…

      Also, being at the top of your most hated list is a badge of Honor for me. Thank you, Archie. All the best to you and your family.

      I mean that, buddy.

      Go Floilers. 🙂

  • Calgarycandle

    Get Jagr off the second line. He lumbers rather than skates at this point. He, Brouwer and Stajan had a good fourth line game about five or six back–that’s where he belongs, maybe with some PP time and as a fourth coach.

    Bennett should be with Backs and Byng. Hashtag # Reunite the Stockton line. Even GG will likely this point after another five or six games.

    Byng in the long-term is in my mind our best forward long term and perhaps even now. A steal at six. Strong net-front presence on the PP along with high IQ and soft hands. No accident the PP clicked tonight with him scoring two on the first unit.

    Mange so much more deserves to play than Lazar. If it is too early to give up on reclamation, at least Lazar should be in the pressbox. When Frolik comes back, send down brother Freddie and we may have four credible lines.

    Happy New Year!

  • BendingCorners

    My birthday wish for me:
    Enough successful callups that GG’s bizarre player usage becomes irrelevant. Twelve top nine forwards should be enough to overcome that built-in disadvantage.
    Lazar and Jagr can be the spares.

  • McRib

    Highly impressive debut from Andrew Mangiapane tonight. Analytics suggest the same, as he was our top play driver playing on the fourth line, basically carrying lesser linemates all night.

  • Jumping Jack Flash

    Janko’s game has been less dominating the last few games, but a lot of that has to do with more responsibility and less sheltering. Mangi had a great game and needs some top 6 minutes.

  • Off the wall

    We gave up a point to conference rivals, so no movement in the standings.
    However I’m pretty pleased with Mangiapane and his game.

    Really hoping for a better 2018.

    Happy New Year FN!

  • JusAFlamer

    will give the players credit.
    managed to win DESPITE the continuing bizzare player usage, and crazy line matching coming from GG
    no idea how a team can win IN SPITE of a coach whose whole goal is to get to overtime.
    Give jagr the Bench for interim, cant do any worse than that monkey behind there now.
    GG is a good assistant coach, but should never be given the reigns of a team

  • Lets Get Something Clear

    A lot of folks say this team quit on the coach. i te know if that’s true. But if you watch the cellies after Giordano scored, you know this team hasn’t quit on its captain.

  • Trevy

    Very entertaining game, shouldn’t of gone to OT, but it is what it is. Mangiapane looked good and deserves a chance to showcase himself with proper talent. Why not try him on Backs’ line or at the least, reunite him on Janko’s line and bump Bennett up to Backs’ line. Jagr’s career is evidently coming to an end and he should be stapled to the fourth line. Tkachuk is just getting better every year! Still not sold on GG and for the love of everything pure, send Hamilton down to the minors and tell Dougie it’s time to deal with it. Happy New Years FN!

  • freethe flames

    After watching Mangiapane for one game I would suggest he should play with Tkachuk and Backlund instead of Jagr, if Mangiapane can’t play RW then move Tkachuk to that side.

  • Fan the Flames

    It has been a long time since the Flames have had an aggressive net front presence on the PP . Mathew Tkachuk is a much better option than Troy Brouwer on the first unit .

  • Ktop

    I hate GG! He said they have to earn it about the rookies. So what about vets? They don’t have to earn it? So if a rookie comes up and instantly makes the 4th line better he still has to earn it even though he’s clearly more talented. What a dumb a$$ robot. This is our system this’s how we do it!
    Why are we playing Stag, Brow and Jags? There gone as soon as we can get rid of them. Think of the future.

      • Chucky

        Shouldn’t it be that way for everyone. When veterans to bring it night after night maybe they should hit the end of their rope. Stajan seems like a real good team guy but he does not have what it takes to make an impact any more, unfortunately he does not have to preform to the young guy standard.

      • Ktop

        That’s old school thinking, if you can judge talent as a coach you should know if they’re ready. Janko should of been here from day 1 but instead we sign Glass! Then Jagr! Come on! That’s the difference between safe and smart, elite and below average.