41Mark Giordano
Photo Credit: Sergei Belski/USA Today Sports

Post-Game: They are who we thought they were

The Calgary Flames are high in the standings. The Ottawa Senators are low in the standings. Thursday night’s game between the two clubs at the Scotiabank Saddledome ended as many predicted it might, with a 5-1 victory for the Flames.

The Rundown

The Senators opened the scoring early in the first period off a great individual effort by Anthony Duclair. He strode into the Flames zone with speed, out-raced Rasmus Andersson, then teed up a tap-in at the front of the net for a streaking Dylan DeMelo to make it 1-0 Ottawa.

But the Flames evened things up in a very Flames manner: on the penalty kill. Bobby Ryan bobbled the puck in the neutral zone and Mark Giordano stole the puck and despite not getting a ton of separation on the rush had himself a bit of a breakaway. Giordano’s initial shot was stopped by Craig Anderson, but he poked the rebound in to make it 1-1.

The Flames took the lead a couple minutes later off a really nice passing play off a three-on-two rush by the fourth line. Derek Ryan entered the zone, passed to Andrew Mangiapane, and he passed it to Garnet Hathaway for a redirect that beat Andersson to make it 2-1 Flames.

Shots were 11-5 Flames and scoring chances 7-1 Flames in the opening period.

The Senators were probably the better team in the second period. They played fast, they generated chances, and they likely deserved a better fate than they got. But the Flames added to their lead midway through the period off a very nice bit of puck retrieval by the fourth line. After a dump-in, Ryan and Hathaway fished the puck off the boards and passed it to Mangiapane in the slot for a quick wrist shot that beat Andersson to extend their lead to 3-1.

Shots were 10-9 Flames and scoring chances 10-8 Senators in the second period.

The Flames added another goal in the third period. A dump-in to the Senators zone bounced to Brady Tkachuk. Before the younger Tkachuk could corral it, his older brother grabbed the loose puck and a couple passes later Mikael Backlund beat Anderson with a quick shot that made it 4-1 Flames.

Matthew Tkachuk added a goal of his own on a net-front redirect with 1:27 remaining in regulation to make it 5-1 Flames and cement the two points for the home side.

Shots were 15-5 Flames and chances were 16-7 Flames in the third period.

Why the Flames Won

Bless their hearts, the Senators work hard. But it was evident in a lot of game situations that they’re a bit out-matched and out-gunned. The Flames didn’t play a perfect game by any stretch of the imagination – they tended to be a bit too loose in their own zone – but they were a little bit better than Ottawa in several areas (and way better in a few) and really turned it on in the final period.

Red Warrior

Collective hat-tip to the fourth line, who generated the go-ahead and insurance goals to cement the victory for the home side.

The Turning Point

Mangiapane’s goal in the second period was huge. The Flames were bleeding scoring chances to open the second period, but the fourth line gave their team some breathing room and assurances that a bobbled puck by one of their players wouldn’t potential force extra time.

The Numbers

(Percentage stats are 5-on-5, data via Natural Stat Trick)

Player Corsi
For%
OZone
Start%
Game
Score
Hamonic 66.7 50.0 0.775
Frolik 63.0 66.7 1.975
Mangiapane 60.9 42.9 2.300
Hathaway 60.0 50.0 2.125
Giordano 60.0 60.0 1.975
Hanifin 60.0 50.0 0.450
Monahan 60.0 50.0 0.640
Tkachuk 58.1 60.0 2.050
Brodie 57.9 60.0 0.775
Ryan 57.7 57.1 1.885
Backlund 54.2 66.7 1.755
Lindholm 52.2 33.3 0.250
Gaudreau 51.6 66.7 0.125
Czarnik 50.0 50.0 -0.150
Jankowski 50.0 33.3 -0.115
Bennett 50.0 66.7 -0.075
Andersson 46.7 50.0 0.600
Fantenberg 46.4 50.0 -0.100
Smith 1.050
Rittich

This and That

Ryan’s assist on the Flames’ second goal was the 100th point of his NHL career.

Up Next

The Flames (46-21-7) head west. They’re back in action on Saturday night on Hockey Night in Canada when they take on the Vancouver Canucks.

  • Jobu

    This just in
    Oilers CEO blames Tobias Rieder for missing playoffs.

    Take that finger of blame and turn it on yourself you moron.

    Can’t wait to see Rieder score 20 goals with the Senators next year.

        • Gazoinks!

          I’m a born raised Calgary flames fan. but that garbage up the QE2 is sickening to stomache as a hockey fan with their OBC at helm for yrs! I’m 53 it’s equivalent to the Sutters running our Flames into a wall year after year!

          • Albertabeef

            I’ll take Sutters over Buttons any day. All three Sutters were quality coaches in their own rights. Darryl literally was seen as the savior of the franchise 12 years ago. During Darryl’s 8 year tenure we made the playoffs all but his first season while recording 3 of the top 10 franchise seasons(11 including this one), and 2 of the top 6. If Iggy had no good player to play with, then 2 star players can’t do that by themselves without a somewhat decent coach/GM. And what was Sutter thinking bringing a loser scrub like Kiprusoff(LOL), drafting Backlund, and signing some loser undrafted defenseman and then holding out sending the kid to Russia. That poor undrafted kid, that Russia trip ruined his career. He was a nobody after that, barely played many games in the NHL for the next 12 years. Surely he never captained an NHL team or set a new record for franchise games played by a defenseman. Dutter would never be responsible for anything like that. LOL

          • Albertabeef

            Does nobody remember the late 90’s early 2000’s when the Dome was nicknamed “the library”? That was after we broke the decibel meter in ’89 lol.

      • Jobu

        “Gee Whiz! I would love to sign a contract with Edmonton so that their management can tell the media how great I am and pump me up for a big raise on my next contract.”

        And they wonder why no one wants to play there…

    • Derzie

      I’m so, so glad he said that. There are actually human beings on the planet that trust the old ex-Oilers. Hearing that nugget of logic from their dunderhead frontman is sure to sway some votes to the ticket cancelling side. But then again, it’s Edmonton…

      • Albertabeef

        When he becomes a driver instead of a passenger maybe. I would not be surprised to find a child in the future named “Derek Andrew Hathaway” or “Andrew Ryan Hathaway” lol. If I’m going to pick on someone, I’m gonna pick the tough guy with the lowest points per game out of all forwards and most D. Of player who have played over 25 games only Kylington has a lower point per game total. But all those who wanted Mange sent back down can eat my shorts(I know some nice Crow peoples lol).

    • hank 57

      Just love this 4th line !!! And 3rd 2nd 1st etc…
      coaching,management Oh and not to forget our great defence
      High five to our scouting staff also
      Luvin it!!!

  • BlueMoonNigel

    The rumour remains. You know the one about why Canadian chanteuse Chantal Kreviazuk called her fifth album “Plain Jane,” not because of a track on the album by the same name, but her true feelings about the vanilla Ottawa Senators after having spent a lost weekend forced to watch the beige Sens play 2 home games. Not a chance the Sens will ever emerge from the huge shadows cast by the Leafs and Habs unless they relocate to Halifax or Saskatoon. The Sens as Canada’s team? Never happen in my lifetime.

    Sloppy start for the Flames led to an early Sens lead and some good scoring chances. Thankfully the tide turned soon after. The passing that led to Hathaway’s goal was sweet.

    Wonder why Crawford didn’t throw the flag on Gio’s shorty. The way the goalie interference rule is interpreted, Sens had a sporting chance of having the goal voided. I guess Crawford figured the game was not going to be decided by a single goal. I’d be shocked if that retread was brought back as coach next season.

    Sad sack Sens won the second period, except on the scoreboard. If I’m Crawford during the 2nd intermission, I tell the lads to keep at ‘er.

    Top line is still MIA, but rumours of their still functioning were confirmed in the 3rd.

    How many posters scoffed at my call that Mangipane could become a perennial 20+ goal man in the NHL? Blaine Stoughton in his heyday couldn’t have sniped it any better than Mangipane 6th goal.

    That slob in the Jack Link’s commercial does a damn fine acting job. He upstages the sasquatch! How is that even possible?

    What’s it gonna take to get Brady Tkachuk in a Flames’ uniform by the start of next season?

    Excellent third for the locals. They controlled the play and generated shots and scoring chances while denying the Sens the same.

    Thought Craig Anderson deserved 3rd star. Kept the Sens in for about 50 minutes with mostly an AHL club in front of him.

      • Albertabeef

        Owners approved it. Flames were a relocated team but made it to the third round of the playoffs their first year in Calgary. None of the media projected Vegas to make the playoffs last season just after the expansion draft. A team full of second line players(#5 forwards and #4 d) and some crafty moves by the GM gave Vegas a chance to be competitive. Which is what Buttman and co. said they wanted ahead of time.

  • Hockeysense9393

    You got to figure that Neal is going to come in with some real focus. Some of the knocks this season against him, has been with the point of not knowing where he belongs. Not really being happy with his deployment? This time of year doesn’t matter right? I think we will see a different player with this vet when he finally draws back in the lineup. Now; I don’t think he will care where he plays, or who he plays with?
    (just put me out coach)

    …or he becomes a Tomas Tatar…whatever. It still keeps all the other players attentive lol.

    • Maybe the tighter checking play heading into the playoffs is more his style, I certainly hope so. I just worry he’s never really built any chemistry with anyone. Would like to see him in for all remaining games with the same linemates: Jankowski and either Bennett or Czarnik. Our new fourth line! Ok 3B. It does feel like we have two top lines and two 3rd lines sometimes.

      • Hockeysense9393

        We just need to hope he pulls some players with him. He’s been through a lot of battles with a lot of different players through the years so, He’s gonna feel like a leader now? This is where he shows his colors and BT shows his ingenious vision?

        I have a weird feeling this is going to work out nicely for the Flames. If I’m wrong? Let it be for the wrong move that still works out (Hamilton). Or a move you happily (are able) to swallow.
        Neal becomes that move you are able to swallow. It’s not the hype you imagined, but it did the trick.