Beyond the Boxscore: Calgary Flames get the bounce they need late in close victory over Kings

Photo credit:Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Shane Stevenson
4 months ago
The Calgary Flames got off to another hot start against a Kings team that didn’t find any momentum until the game was half over. Calgary never let Los Angeles pull away after they got an undeserved lead, instead punching right back with two quick goals of their own. At 2-2 in the third period things were going back and forth before Yegor Sharangovich got space to get a shot off – the bounces that come with that are all deserved. Four straight victories for Calgary against some quality opposition.
CF% – 64%, SCF% – 49.57%, HDCF% – 40.69%, xGF% – 47.84%
It’s a Team Game – I’m not sure the Kings knew the game started at 7 p.m. because they basically took the entire first period off. Calgary didn’t take advantage in a dominant manner, but they did dictate the control of the game from start to finish. Certain players stood above the crowd today to really drag the Flames into this important divisional match-up. Credit for Ryan Huska for keeping everyone this focused on the games when there’s noise echoing around every corner of the Saddledome. At least everyone can take a few days off to appreciate Kiprusoff this weekend.
Corsi King – Noah Hanifin (81.86%) is playing out of his mind right now. He’s elevated his offensive game in the last week to one of the highest levels we’ve ever seen him play at. To think the reports are the trade offers are weak for him – not for long if he keeps this play up. Not a Flames player in this game finished below 50%, which will happen when there is next to no offensive activity for the first 30 minutes of the game. Shout-out to Mangiapane (64.98%) and his line for over 24 shot attempts in just 15 minutes of 5v5 play.
Under Pressure –
Taken By Chance – Blake Coleman (66.85 SCF% // 84.71 HDCF%) led the team in high danger chances with 6. He backed it up with just 1 against – the Backlund (66.96% // 82.17%) trio spent almost the entire time attacking in this one. On the flip side the Kings got some quality looks, in the third period specifically, that were given up against the usual suspects. Andersson (23.53% // 15.08%) and Weegar (17.02% // 15.08%) do play top minutes against top players, but the end results can’t be this many quality looks against in a game. For what it’s worth I still feel Weegar had a good game – he just lost some of that finishing touch on his shots the last little bit.
xG Breakdown –
xGF% – The usual suspects from above all dominated quality share as well, so lets look at some players we didn’t talk about. Jonathan Huberdeau (41.65%) looked really good and way more engaged than we’ve seen from him at any point in a Flames jersey. He’s been producing for a few months now and the noise around him has died down to barely a whisper (for the time being). The end result appears to be him getting even more comfortable and the creative, dead-eye accurate Huberdeau is showing occasional flashes of excellence. Jakob Pelletier (53.73%) also was a noticeable speedster every shift. He got rewarded with an assist on the Sharangovich (41.09%) goal – well deserved for a guy who I think is going to surprise some people as he catches his stride coming off the shoulder injury.
Game Flow –
Game Score –
Shot Heatmap –
In The Crease – Another day and another quality start for Jacob Markstrom. The man might single-handedly drag the Calgary Flames into the Stanley Cup playoffs if he just plays like this every single night out. The Kings even caught him off guard because they barely shot the puck for the first half of the match, but after the first goal Markstrom settled back in to being the dialed in machine we’ve seen since the seasons tarted. 2.18 expected goals against at 5v5 with just 2 getting behind him.
The Goals –
Flashalytic’s 3 Stars –
1) Andrew Mangiapane
2) Noah Hanifin
3) Blake Coleman
(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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