Beyond the Boxscore: Calgary Flames continue to leave points on table after loss to Anaheim Ducks

Photo credit:Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Shane Stevenson
25 days ago
I understand you can’t win them all, but the Calgary Flames just handed the Anaheim Ducks just their second win in their last 14 games. The Flames most offensive players disguised how horrendous they were defensively by being opportunistic. Throw in an uncharacteristic performance by the starting goaltender and it was another loss to a bottom five team in the NHL. What seemed like a close game – because the Flames made the score close in the third – was in fact nothing of the sort. It was an okay game with one good period sandwich by a cold start and an early finish. When considering the quality of opponent as well? Extra disappointing. Considering the state of the team in the standings? Forgivable.
CF% – 41.12%, SCF% – 43.8%, HDCF% – 35.62%, xGF% – 35.36%
It’s a Team Game – Really the only period where they got outplayed was the first. High danger chances were 7 to 2 in favour of the Ducks. The Flames bounced back with a stupendous second only to just crumble in the third. They were so close to keeping things pedal to the meddle, instead the Ducks got a rush goal, and the Flames only scored again off a bounce and not a shot. You take the goals any way you get them, but finding better chances instead of settling for deflections through traffic is a much preferable strategy – one Calgary’s been getting away from down the stretch.
Corsi King – The leader in chances for is Rasmus Andersson (51.30%) and as his ratio would show you he also had the same number of chances come back his way too. It wasn’t as many as the 30 chances MacKenzie Weegar (42.56%) faced and the 33 Daniil Miromanov (36.06%) faced. Basically, all the defence is just in a spot where they can’t stop rush chances and have trouble defending down low in their zone. Naturally expected after trading away two seasoned top four defencemen. Dryden Hunt (13.14%) had himself a real rough night and outside of A.J. Greer’s (29.75%) breakaway that fourth line generated very little of significance.
Under Pressure –
Taken By Chance – Connor Zary (42.71 SCF% // 52.68 HDCF%) despite seeing his role diminished at the halfway point of the game led the team in high danger chances. He felt extremely noticeable when everyone else faded away. The kids should be more noticeable they still have a lot to prove and some big money contracts to try and earn. Even Pospisil (39.06% // 24.76%) deserves some flowers. After a rough start he never let it affect him and he came out with a strong last 40 including the primary assist on the third goal. I could get into the negatives but honestly at this point of the year – and with the position the Flames find themselves in – the positives feel like the only thing needing to be focused on for public evaluation.
xG Breakdown –
xGF% – Mikael Backlund (55.13%) continues ot be a wizard. On a night when the majority of the team ends on the south side of the quality share, he still manages to find himself on the positive. One of the best 2/3 Cs the Flames have ever had. Connor Zary (54.63%) and Blake Coleman (51.54%) were the other forwards on the positive side of the puck. The goal scoring combination had a rough outing in the first period which severly dampened their numbers. That’s just the polarization you get with Andrei Kuzmenko (22.14%) who may have scored 2 5v5 goals but also was on the ice for 3 against. Yeah, bet all of you didn’t see that part – that’s fine. If they can continue to let him score you may be able to package him as a movable asset this summer. For that reason alone, right now I’m all about letting this play out the way it is. The Flames have a little too big of a logjam on the wings and somebody has to be moved out.
Game Flow –
Game Score –
Shot Heatmap –
In The Crease – I mean Markstrom didn’t make the usual Markstrom saves, and the Flames lost. Some distance goals through traffic got by him – maybe all the time off has him out of his groove. Who’s to say. Anyways the Vezina isn’t in reach, neither are the playoffs, and continuing to cycle between him and Wolf, probably the move. 4 goals against at 5v5 on 2.48 expect goals against.
The Goals –
Flashalytic’s 3 Stars –
1) Mikael Backlund
2) Connor Zary
3) Yegor Sharangovich
(Stats compiled from Naturalstattrick.com // Game Score from Hockeystatcards.com // xG and Under Pressure charts from HockeyViz.com // Game Flow and Shot Heatmap from NaturalStatTrick.com)
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