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Beyond the Boxscore: The Calgary Flames won’t go quietly into the night

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Photo credit:Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Shane Stevenson
11 months ago
“Never give up” is the mantra in Calgary and as such you get late season efforts like this one. After getting embarrassed last week by these same Los Angeles Kings that the Calgary Flames came out ready to go through a grind on their way to a win – in large part to a spectacular performance from Jacob Markstrom. The game started going back and forth but after Calgary got some momentum in the second period things stalled out. The Kings would get a few good looks down the stretch but could not solve the Flames netminder.
CF% – 56.15%, SCF% – 55.78%, HDCF% – 62.2%, xGF% – 61.42%
It’s a Team Game – Calgary came out swinging able to manage some serious looks in the first period. Walker Duehr used his energy all night long creating space and offence for anybody with him. After the first though it became a goaltending battle and neither guy gave another inch. The Kings getting Korpisalo is a very underrated move as they move into the playoffs looking for home ice advantage. Calgary – with the win – will still hang on to a thread of hope for a wild card.
Corsi King – MacKenzie Weegar (68.28%) is under a long-term contract with the Calgary Flames and that’s a tremendous thing. His play has got stronger as the year has gone on and he’s settled into the team. I thought he was great on the radio today saying Coronato wouldn’t want to talk to a “grumpy old defenceman” like himself. Sounds like the arrival of the young prospect has raised the morale within the room a little bit. A little youthful spark plug can go a long way.
Corsi Clown – Troy Stecher (22%) and Dennis Gilbert (38.89%) didn’t fare to well together. Stecher only was on the ice for 4 shot attempts overall not contributing much to the offence. Most Flames finished on the positive side of the chance ratios. If all that was below was your third pairing defence then you didn’t have too many issues.
Under Pressure –
Taken By Chance – Rasmus Andersson (58.47 SCF% // 84.47 HDCF%) continues to be a fantastic point producer from the Flames back end. He seems to get better as the year goes on every season. Next year if he can get off to a hot start, he could flirt with a 60 point season. Andrew Mangiapane (76.68% // 78.92%) has no doubt struggled this season but he’s my number one bounce back candidate for next season. Mangiapane needs to be a key piece if the Flames are going to have success. I think he’s just having a down year before exploding.
xG Breakdown –
xGF% – Trevor Lewis (75.40%) had a quality game. I harp on him a lot when he falters so I would like to raise him up when he succeeds. I’ve really loved his offensive touch in front of the Flames net lately. It hasn’t translated into a high amount of goals but it’s got him a few extra points the last month. A few Flames were in the dumps like Mikael Backlund (38.48%), Nick Ritchie (38.15%), and Stecher (20.80%).
Game Flow –
Game Score –
Shot Heatmap –
In The Crease – A fantastic showing from Markstrom who is playing his best hockey as the season winds down. This return to form is a very welcoming sign and can ease the tension of concern for the future of the crease. Well, the immediate future anyways. 1.80 expected goals against with only 1 medium danger goal getting behind him. Throw in being perfect on the penalty kill and it’s a first star performance for number 25.
Player Spotlight – Walker Duehr – While his energy is fantastic and needs to be in the lineup it is worth noting it comes at a defensive cost. Getting some more mobile linemates out there that can cover back defensively while Duehr aggressively forechecks would do wonders to help the Flames in limiting chances against. Some guys are just too slow, but Duehr’s presence is getting every single ounce of juice left in them legs.
The Goals –
Flashalytic’s 3 Stars –
1) Jacob Markstrom
2) Walker Duehr
3) MacKenzie Weegar
 (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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