2023-24 Calgary Flames predictions: Andrew Mangiapane hits at least 25 goals in 2023-24

Photo credit:Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Jeff Middleton
7 months ago
Calgary Flames forward Andrew Mangiapane had an interesting production year under former head coach Darryl Sutter. After a season in 2021-22 where he was rewarded at almost every twist and turn of the season, it didn’t feel like he could get much going in 2022-23 in terms of goal scoring. However, with a new season and a new head coach at the helm (and some statistical regression), it’s hard for me not to believe that he can get back to the 25 goal mark.

Prediction: Andrew Mangiapane hits at least 25 goals in 2023-24

Last season, Mangiapane finished with 17 goals and 26 assists for a total of 43 points in 82 games played. Those numbers in the grand scheme of things aren’t awful. However, we know that he has the ability to score more, especially given the kind of player he is.
The 27 year old forward plays a style of game based around speed, strong forechecking, and recovering pucks along the boards to create offence. He’s not afraid to go to the front of the net, and he creates a lot of expected goals (xGF) because of it. In this graph from HockeyViz, the deep red is where he generates most of his shots on net: around the net and between the hash marks.
One difference between last season and the season prior was Mangiapane’s defence. It was significantly worse in 2022-23 than it has been in years prior, which means it will probably regress back to what it was before. Mangiapane does best when he’s working from his own end outward.
Another big difference in Mangiapane’s goal-scoring was a simple dip in shooting percentage. He has played every game on the schedule for the last three seasons, so his health going into next season shouldn’t be a question mark. However, the real questions come when deciding on whether or not he can revamp his shooting.
Mangiapane’s career average shooting percentage before his down year in 2022-23 was 17.3 percent. That number certainly doesn’t seem sustainable, and with his less-than-stellar goal-scoring last season, it has moved down to 14.9 percent (he shot 9.3 percent, which is by far the lowest of his career in seasons with more than 10 games played). Even in the HockeyViz graphic above showcasing the heatmaps of where Mangiapane finds success, you can see that on the “finishing” part of the middle section that says “impact on goal odds” is at a negative six, which is well below the average, and it says that a bounce back is likely.
The breakout season with 35 goals to Mangiapane’s name in 2021-22 was the only time that he has hit the 25 goal mark. However, if he were to have shot at around 13.7-13.8 percent (which would still be a few points below his career average at that point) instead of 9.3, Mangiapane would have hit the 25 goal mark for the second time in his career. And if he continues to take around 185-200 shots per season, he could certainly hit that mark again.
There are obviously plenty of factors that go into scoring goals at the NHL level, but Mangiapane has proven that he can be an effective scorer at this level. Although I don’t think he will hit the 35 goal mark again for the rest of his career (never say never, I guess), it isn’t too far of a stretch to say that he could hit 25 goals or maybe even 30 if you’re extra optimistic. No matter what, Mangiapane is a good player that is consistently useful in other areas, but the goal-scoring part of his arsenal is what makes him such a valuable piece to this Calgary Flames forward core.

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