Calgary Flames Post-Game: Special teams power outage leads to loss to Flyers
Photo credit:Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
By Ryan Pike7 months ago
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The Calgary Flames had a lot of shots on goal against the Philadelphia Flyers on Monday afternoon. They had quite a few scoring chances. They were, generally speaking, the team that carried play. But as has been the case this season, the Flames couldn’t convert when it mattered most – at five-on-five or the power play.
The Flames lost 4-3 to the Flyers on Monday afternoon, continuing their win one, lose one trend.
The Flames were all over the Flyers early in the first period. They had oodles of chances, but could not bury ’em. And that was unfortunate, because Philadelphia managed to bury one of their few strong chances.
The Flames couldn’t hold a loose puck in at the Flyers blueline, leading to a two-on-two rush the other way with Noah Hanifin and Rasmus Andersson chasing down Travis Konecny (with Noah Cates in the middle lane waiting for a potential pass). Hanifin cut across to poke-check Konecny… and missed the check, giving Konecny an easy lane to cut the slot and shoot. His shot beat Jacob Markstrom and gave the Flyers a 1-0 lead.
The Flames got a power play in the second period that did not go well. Early in the advantage, the Flyers created a three-on-two rush that nearly resulted in a goal – Andersson swept the puck off the goal line – and was followed by Dillon Dube missing the net on a breakaway. As the penalty ended, Noah Cates stepped out of the Flyers penalty box, joined in on a two-on-two rush, and fed Nicolas Deslauriers for a redirect in the net-front area that chipped over top of Markstrom to give the visitors a 2-0 lead.
The Flames got on the board a little later, though. They chipped the puck into the Flyers zone and then chased it down. Mikael Backlund, seeing a bit of traffic developing in front of the Flyers net, opted to skate and shoot, beating Samuel Ersson (whose view of the shot was somewhat obscured by all them bodies) to cut the Flyers’ lead to 2-1.
But another flat Flames power play was immediately followed by Flyers offensive zone pressure, ending with Konecny feeding Tony DeAngelo at the point. DeAngelo’s shot beat Markstrom to give the Flyers a 3-1 lead.
But the Flames inched back closer early in the third period. Off the rush, Tyler Toffoli skated wide of the net and fired a low shot on net that just eluded Ersson inside the far post. That cut the Flyers’ lead to 3-2.
The Flames tied things up a little later, off a great pressure shift from the Backlund line. Noah Hanifin’s shot from the point was deflected by Backlund to the left side of the crease, where Andrew Mangiapane batted it in to tie the game at 3-3.
But three minutes later, the Flyers struck again. The Flames got caught on their heels during a counter-punch rush by the Flyers, resulting in a James van Riemsdyk slap-pass getting redirected by Wade Allison at the far post past Markstrom to give the Flyers a 4-3 edge.
The Flyers held on for the victory.
Why the Flames lost
I feel like I’ve written this a lot, but this game was the 2022-23 Flames in a nutshell. They had the puck a lot and put a lot of rubber on Ersson, but couldn’t execute when the game was up for grabs. And their play away from the puck was just bad enough for them to be chasing.
And it needs to be emphasized: the power play was awful. Truly awful.
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Let’s give a joint award to Backlund, Mangiapane and Blake Coleman. They were excellent.
Man, that fourth Flyers goal was a gut-punch, eh? The Flames clawed all the way back from 3-1 behind to even things up, but they just couldn’t avoid one more costly lapse.
This and that
Dennis Gilbert slotted into the lineup in place of an injured Michael Stone. Per Sportsnet’s Eric Francis, Stone is in a walking boot. Gilbert fought Nick Seeler in the first period, Gilbert’s fifth fight of the season.
The Flames are now 0-13-2 when trailing after two periods.
With the game taking place on the Family Day holiday, the Flames game presentation staff integrated all sorts of youngsters into the proceedings.
The Flames (26-20-11) are headed back on the road. They kick off a three game western swing on Wednesday night when they head to Arizona State University to face the Arizona Coyotes.
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