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Calgary Flames Post-Game: Shorthanded Flames sunk by Seattle

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Photo credit:Mike Gould / FlamesNation
Ryan Pike
6 months ago
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Typically, split squad pre-season games are sleepy affairs. For better or for worse, the Calgary Flames’ meeting with the Seattle Kraken at the Saddledome on Monday night was fairly noteworthy.
The Flames lost to the Kraken by a 5-3 score in a game that featured a significant injury and a pair of game misconducts.

The rundown

The Flames opened the scoring early off a nice bit of passing in the offensive zone. Clark Bishop won a battle below the Seattle goal line, then put the puck in front for Walker Duehr, who beat Kraken netminder Chris Driedger with a nifty backhander to give the Flames a 1-0 lead.
The Kraken evened things up a little later, as Cale Fleury made a nice shot – slightly changing direction of his release – that eluded Dustin Wolf to make it a 1-1 game.
Late in the first period, Jakob Pelletier had to be helped off the ice after a nasty collision along the boards with Kraken forward Marian Studenic. basically, Pelletier entered the Seattle zone off the rush, all alone, and started to button-hook towards the blueline to wait for reinforcements. As he turned, Studenic gave him a push from behind and he crashed heavily into the boards.
Seattle took the lead in the second period on a five-on-three power play. With MacKenzie Weegar and Yan Kuznetsov in the box, a nice passing sequence ended with Kailer Yamamoto beating Wolf to make it 2-1.
The Flames tied it up a little while later on the power play. With Emilio Pettersen parked in front of the Seattle net, Mikael Backlund’s wrister eluded everybody (including the goaltender) to make it 2-2.
But Seattle retook the lead late in the period while a man down. Etienne Morin, manning the point on the power play, had his stick explode and AHL sniper Tye Kartye raced in on a breakaway against Wolf. Good news: Wolf made a big save. Bad news: Ben Jones made an errant outlet pass that was intercepted by Kartye, who beat Wolf with his second chance to make it a 3-2 game.
The Kraken padded their lead early in the third period, as Devin Shore took advantage of a passing lane down low in the Flames’ zone, finding Will Borgen pinching in the slot and Borgen’s quick shot eluded Wolf’s glove.
The Flames got one back, though, as a bit of nice puck-moving on the power play ended with Andrew Mangiapane beating Kraken netminder Ales Stezka after the goalie made the initial stop.
But Seattle answered back on a power play of their own. Yamamoto scored his second of the game, sliding the puck under a diving Wolf to give the Kraken a 5-3 lead.

Why the Flames lost

The Flames had two big issues: sloppiness and discipline.
Defensively, they were fairly porous, both in terms of allowing poor gaps and leaving passing and shooting lanes open, and turning the puck over on attempted zone exits. And while the Kraken had fewer power plays than the Flames did, man, the Flames spent too much time in the penalty box, and that seemed to do a bunch to dispel their own momentum.
Yeah, playing a good chunk of the game without a key forward and a key defenceman didn’t help, but the Flames did a lot to get in their own way.
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Red Warrior

A few home side players stood out, including Walker Duehr, Blake Coleman, Andrew Mangiapane and Mikael Backlund. Of the younger players, William Stromgren and Etienne Morin seemed energetic and poised for a pair of players in their first NHL exhibition games.

Turning point

Aw man, that shorthanded goal by Seattle late in the second period was a backbreaker. If the Flames can hit the intermission tied at two apiece, even missing two key players, they probably feel pretty good. But that late goal left them chasing for the rest of the evening.

This and that

Here’s how the Flames lined up:
Mangiapane – Backlund – Coleman
Pelletier – Bishop – Duehr
Pettersen – Schwindt – Klapka
Stromgren – Jones – Lipinski
Zadorov – Weegar
Hanifin – DeSimone
Morin – Kuznetsov
Dustin Wolf started, backed up by Oscar Dansk, and went the distance.
MacKenzie Weegar received a roughing penalty in the second period, and also received an unsportsmanlike conduct minor and a 10-minute misconduct. (The game sheet didn’t specify, but the situation seems like it was for arguing with the officials.) A couple minutes later, Weegar was given a game misconduct penalty and was tossed from the game. (Again, the game sheet doesn’t specify, but it seems consistent with arguing with the officials, but we’re endeavouring to find out more from the league.)
Weegar, Blake Coleman and Mikael Backlund served as alternate captains.

Up next

The Flames are back in action on Wednesday night when they visit the Winnipeg Jets.

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