The Calgary Flames beat the Arizona Coyotes by a 5-2 score on Monday afternoon. Here are selected reactions from players and coaches following the game.
Rasmus Andersson steps up
Versatile defender TJ Brodie didn’t dress against Arizona due to a minor injury. In his place stepped third pair defender (and rookie) Rasmus Andersson. The youngster was very solid, eating up minutes and generating two assists.
“I thought he was steady,” said Flames head coach Bill Peters of the 21-year-old Andersson. “I thought we all got it going a little bit and he was one of the guys that played real well. Solid. Was good on the power play, shot the puck. He’s got a real good shot probably and nobody in the league knows it. He doesn’t use it enough. But I think people will figure it out.”
Mark Giordano sets a career high
Defensemen play tough minutes. Since he became an NHL regular in 2006-07, Flames captain Mark Giordano has blocked nearly 1,500 shots. It’s reasonable to expect blueliners to slow down a bit, especially as they get on the wrong side of 30.
Monday night’s two point effort gave Giordano a new career high in points with 57 – with 23 games remaining in the regular season. Speaking to media after the game, Giordano characteristically deflected credit for his accomplishment.
“It always feels good to contribute and get points offensively,” said Giordano. “But again, we have such a good team and score so many goals that a lot of guys numbers are gonna look really good this year. But more importantly, where we are in the standings is huge right now and we want to keep pushing and get that top spot.”
Peters had a pretty concise assessment of his captain’s play.
“He’s good every night.”
Doing the line shuffle
With Brodie on the shelf for the night, the Flames had a new look first pairing (Giordano and Andersson) and a relatively new third pairing (Oliver Kylington with Dalton Prout). After 20 minutes, Peters flipped Matthew Tkachuk and Elias Lindholm, producing the following forward units:
- Gaudreau – Monahan – Tkachuk
- Frolik – Backlund – Lindholm
- Bennett – Jankowski – Czarnik
- Mangiapane – Ryan – Hathaway
Peters provided his rationale for the change-up after the game.
Just freshening it up a little bit. Just freshening it up. Lindy was going well on draws and that was important. It’s an important part of the game. They had an icing, no change, we scored a goal on it. People try to devalue the importance of face-offs but they’re very important. And you know what? It was time for a little bit of a change.”
It’s worth noting that the Noah Hanifin/Travis Hamonic pairing and the fourth line were kept together, likely to (a) provide stability and (b) reward those units for their efforts in recent games.