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Beyond the Boxscore: Calgary Flames score 3 goals in 3:37, stun the Stars

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Photo credit:Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports
Shane Stevenson
9 months ago
It isn’t like Calgary ever let the game completely slip away from them. The second period saw some breakdowns in their defensive stance, but the Benn goal was the only blemish to the record. Dallas did come to play with a solid defensive structure themselves, but it all collapsed into ash when the Flames started crashing the crease the last 10 minutes of regulation. Calgary gains a huge win that was largely deserved.
CF% – 63.67%, SCF% – 60.49%, HDCF% – 51.57%, xGF% – 56.17%
It’s a Team Game – Don’t get me wrong, a huge part for the surge in numbers came directly from Calgary’s third period of play, but the Flames were playing okay from the moment the puck dropped. The goals that got scored in the first period were a very fortuitous bounce and a screened snipe from one of Dallas’ best goal scorers. Dallas knows how to play defence themselves – and they typically play Calgary very heavy. Beyond positive that Calgary was able to accomplish this win in the manner they did.
Corsi King – Chris Tanev (83.89 CF%) was doing everything tonight. Defending all over his own zone and even jumping in on a few rushes to create some chances. Partner Oliver Kylington (81.73%) nets the game winning goal on a jaw dropping rush. The top forward ended up being Milan Lucic (77.22%) whose line played noticeably well.
Corsi Clown – It was another game close to not having anyone finish below 50%, but Dillon Dubé (46.71 CF%) was just below the marker. That number in that slot doesn’t mean Dubé played bad – it means he was very close to creating as many shot attempts for himself as he saw go against him at 5v5. Flames are turning into puck possession masters at their halfway point.
Taken By Chance – The top line was doing their thing again and it ended up with a huge goal from Johnny Gaudreau (65.14 SCF% // 66.93 HDCF%). The play starts in the corner as Elias Lindholm (68.73% // 75.27%) elbows the puck behind the net to Matthew Tkachuk (68.64% // 66.90%), Tkachuk then comes around the opposite side of the net and tries to stuff the puck far side. Oettinger makes the initial save but Johnny Hockey buries the rebound. Flames tie game (and the crowd goes wild).
xGF% – The expected goal ratios do show some individual cracks where other statistics sometimes falter. Mikael Backlund (37.29 xGF%) may have had more overall chances than his opposition tonight, but the chances Dallas got while he was out were of more significance. In this spot we can see that the D pairs weren’t all in sync either, with Erik Gudbranson (41.11%) and Nikita Zadorov (38.13%) struggling.
Game Flow –
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The real tipping point was halfway through the third period. Calgary started getting sustained pressure and the Stars strategy up till that point crumbled. Calgary was able to walk into the Stars crease unresisted after that point which was the reason for the 2 goals to tie the game. A 3-on-2 game winning rush with 2 defenceman was a new thing though, anyone have that on their bingo cards this year?
Game Score – Top of the table Oliver Kylington (2.64 game // 0.95 average) who at the halfway point is on pace to get 40 points over 82 games. Not bad for a guy that played 3:27 seconds on opening night. Elias Lindholm (2.35 // 1.37) and Johnny Gaudreau (2.08 // 1.77) continue to raise their season averages. Seriously getting 1.77 out of Gaudreau on average – it’s such a treat to get to watch. That tying goal was a rebound goal in front of the net as he fought off defenders. Lots of fight in Gaudreau, he looks determined.
Shot Heatmap –
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Vancouver kept Calgary so far out from the net it made sense that priority number one in this game would be getting back to that area of the ice. Dallas made it difficult – particularly in the second period, but Calgary never quits. This one just feels like a massive and momentous W for Calgary – interested to see how they come out against the ‘Yotes next.
In The Crease – When was the last time I got to discuss 2 goalies in one game? Jacob Markstrom faced 1.9 expected goals against in 31:58 at 5v5. Allowed one high danger goal and two medium danger goals. The Benn goal was most certainly on the forward who was not covering his man, but the Robertson goal stings a bit. Dan Vladar made 3 saves – only 0.10 expected goals against in 16:28 5v5 TOI. Dallas absolutely mailed it in for the third and Vladar gets the W in his statline.
Today’s Specials – Penalty Kill was able to handle a Dallas team with some absolute weapons. Robertson, Hintz, Pavelski, Seguin, Klingberg, Heiskanen, Gurianov, Benn – they are extremely dangerous on the man advantage. Not quite Edmonton good, but one of the teams that’s as close as mortal units can get to ones with 2 superhumans on it. Calgary being able to shut them down in a tight game – huge.
Player Spotlight – Adam Ružička – The young man was noticeably on the attack in this one. He meshed well with Lucic (all the youngsters do) to constantly drive play into the Stars end. He showed great poise on the first goal of the game – waiting till his passing lane to Lewis opened up before dishing off the puck. 10 games into this season and he’s had significantly more impactful games than duds. I say he sticks around awhile yet.
Flashalytic’s 3 Stars –
1) Elias Lindholm
2) Oliver Kylington
3) Johnny Gaudreau
The Flames are right back at it on Wednesday against the Arizona Coyotes who are hot off beating Colorado. It all goes at 7:30 p.m. MT.
(Stats compiled from Naturalstattrick.com // Game Score from Hockeystatcards.com)

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