95Derek Ryan
Photo Credit: James Guillory/USA Today Sports

Post-Game: Flames weather the storm in Carolina

The Calgary Flames didn’t play a perfect 60 minutes of hockey on Sunday afternoon in Raleigh, North Carolina. But they got what they needed from their special teams units en route to a 4-3 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes.

The Rundown

The Hurricanes got out to an early lead off a puck-handling gaffe by TJ Brodie in the defensive zone. Brodie attempted a cross-slot outlet pass from the corner of the defensive zone. That puck was intercepted by Sebastian Aho and after some quick passing Teuvo Teravainen put the puck past David Rittich to make it 1-0 Carolina.

But the Flames answered back on a power play later in the period. Mark Giordano’s point shot ricocheted around on its way to the net, getting redirected by Elias Lindholm to make it 1-1.

Shots were 14-10 Hurricanes and scoring chances 10-5 Hurricanes in the opening period.

The Flames took the lead midway through the second period off a nice bit of puck-movement by the fourth line. Andrew Mangiapane chipped the puck into the Hurricanes zone where it was collected by Derek Ryan. Ryan turned on the jets, skating around to the far side of Petr Mrazek’s net and beating him with a wrap-around to make it 2-1 Flames.

With Mark Giordano in the box the Flames cashed in on the penalty kill. Ryan pressured the Hurricanes’ defender at the point, forcing a turnover and a two-on-one. He managed to find Garnet Hathaway with a very precise pass for a redirected a 3-1 Flames lead.

But Carolina answered back before the period ended. Rasmus Andersson couldn’t clear the zone, as Lucas Wallmark intercepted his pass and fed Dougie Hamilton. Hamilton beat Rittich glove-side to make it a 3-2 game.

Shots were 13-10 Flames and chances 8-8 in the second period.

The Flames got some insurance in the latter stages of the third period. James Neal drove the net but couldn’t beat Mrazek. The puck was collected by Sam Bennett, who fed Noah Hanifin at the point and his shot beat Mrazek to make it 4-2 Flames.

Carolina pulled their goalie and Aho beat Rittich with a one-timer from the top of the circles after a face-off win to draw closer to 4-3, but that was as close as the ‘Canes got.

Shots were 13-9 Hurricanes, scoring chances 6-4 Flames in the third.

Why the Flames Won

The Flames were good but not perfect at even strength, and two of Carolina’s goals were directly a result of some really bad passing in their own zone. If they could clean up their puck management, life would be a lot easier.

That said, the Flames managed to scored on the power play and shorthanded. They got even strength scoring from their third and fourth lines. Their goaltender was really good. All things considered, that’s usually a recipe for a win.

Red Warrior

Let’s go with Ryan, who had a multi-point night against his old team. But all the former Hurricanes had goals on this afternoon, so honourable mentions to Elias Lindholm and Noah Hanifin as well.

And a stick-tap to Rittich, who made 34 saves.

The Turning Point

Hathaway’s shorthanded goal was big, giving the Flames a two goal lead and a good deal of breathing room.

The Numbers

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

Player Corsi
For%
OZone
Start%
Game
Score
Tkachuk 60.7 40.0 0.700
Frolik 60.7 50.0 0.675
Backlund 56.7 33.3 0.940
Giordano 53.3 38.5 0.450
Jankowski 52.6 50.0 0.060
Kylington 52.2 40.0 0.450
Brodie 51.6 38.5 0.025
Prout 50.0 40.0 0.000
Bennett 50.0 50.0 0.840
Neal 42.9 75.0 0.650
Ryan 40.0 16.7 1.890
Hanifin 34.2 50.0 0.425
Hathaway 33.3 20.0 0.875
Andersson 32.4 50.0 -0.325
Mangiapane 30.0 20.0 0.900
Monahan 30.0 50.0 0.145
Lindholm 29.6 45.5 0.825
Gaudreau 28.6 50.0 -0.525
Rittich 1.150
Smith

This and That

Per Steinberg, the Flames haven’t lost consecutive games in regulation since November.

Up Next

The Flames (34-14-5) fly back to Calgary tonight. They host the San Jose Sharks on Thursday night in a huge Pacific Division clash.

  • freethe flames

    So “the Hockey Writers” Alex Hamilton suggests that the Flames biggest priority should be to add another top 6/9 forward and he lists the following names: Zuc, Hayes, Ferland, Silfverberg and Stone with Zuc being the lowest cost at a 2nd round pick a good prospect.

    At this moment I think the priority must be another solid defender. Someone who can play especially if any of the kids struggle.

    • everton fc

      I say add a defender like McQuaid, but only if Hamonic’s out into the playoffs. If Hamonic’s out for a month, recall Valimaki, and rotate he and Prout, until Hamonic returns. I’d also give Valiev one start, to see how he does.

      I think our 4th line is one wing away from being a 2nd “3rd line”. Hayes will cost us too much, though he’ll make Johnny Hockey happy. I like Ferland the most of the list above, but can’t see him back here. Zuccarello’s got 28 points in 37 games. Better than anyone on our 3rd line, and only two points behind Backlund. He could be a nice fit here, at low cost – a temporary solution, who may prove a valuable veteran presence, in the playoffs. Anaheim won’t trade w/us, so count out Silfverberg. Stone is too expensive. Ditto Duchene. The other guy I like is Toffoli. Hagelin’s speed, as 4th line/LW, also interest me, as he’d come cheap. I am not convinced Mangiapane or Czarnik are the answer. And I’ll say publicly I think our best possible 4th line would be Hathaway-Ryan-Lazar.

      • freethe flames

        Another D I would look at is Jensen out of Detroit; he’s playing 20 minutes a night; both his corsi and counting stats are fine and he is only a minus 1 on that team. In essence he is playing top 4 minutes there and he could handle the 6th man position here and play up a bit if needed. He is also on a low contract and might be a guy you could resign as a depth D. Mangiapane is IMO going to be fine but not this year and the team needs to deeper than him. I suspect Lazar’s confidence is up significantly and we know two things about him; he has NHL speed and can kill penalties.

          • everton fc

            Lazar can skate. He can skate at the NHL level. He’s a good two-way player, positionally. Will he ever score 10-15 goals? Probably not. We simply need a wing on our 4th line who can play a solid two-way game, perhaps chip in a bit on the PK, can play physical (not saying he’s a fighter – he isn’t, but can, need be), and who doesn’t make mistakes. Someone who knows, and will play within his role.

            This, is Curtis Lazar. Not Mangiapane. Definitely not Czarnik.

    • freethe flames

      Especially with Hammer injured. Even if Hammer was healthy he would be a good extra. The other thing is that I don’t think he would be expensive to trade for and I don’t think he would be expensive to resign. With no prospects in the D pool the Flames need to find more depth. If he was brought in and was a good fit; it would make it much easier to discuss trading one of the D that becomes a UFA next year. Some of the trades also need to look at big picture as well.

  • Heeeeere’s Johnny

    Just watched the game on PVR and have one comment that hasn’t been covered. Brodie was a hot mess today. Bone head passes and hands of stone all day.

  • Jumping Jack Flash

    Ras was painfully bad today. He is not big or strong enough to eat the puck on the boards. His game has to be moving the puck quickly and not get caught heavy footed. No issues with Prout’s game he clears the crease which is important.

  • Vinnsanity0412

    Bad Brodie is beginning to rear his ugly head again. Two horrific giveaways today, a fair number before the break…there is only so much Gio can do to prop this guy up. Get it together, T.J.!!

  • Albertabeef

    What a great photo. The raw emotions of the Canes fans as Derek Ryan basically thwarts the chances of his former team making the playoffs. I think that little girl has that “if looks could kill” look on her face, poor girl. lol He was probably her favorite player last year.