Post-Game: Flames fade in key loss to Ottawa
Photo credit:Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports
By Ryan Pike1 year ago
The Calgary Flames weren’t terrible on Wednesday in Ottawa. But they weren’t great, and they’re at a point in their schedule were “not terrible” really isn’t enough. They played two pretty good periods against the Senators, but gave away a slim third period lead en route to a 3-1 loss to the Senators to cap off a 1-3-0 Ontario road trip.
The first period was pretty even. The Flames got the higher quality scoring chances, but neither team scored. Shots were 11-10 Senators and scoring chances 9-4 Flames in the first period.
The Senators were a little bit better in the second period, but the Flames were opportunistic.
Midway through the second period, the Flames broke through. Mark Giordano’s shot wobbled off Alex Formenton and past Filip Gustavsson to give the visitors a 1-0 edge.
Shots were 11-7 Flames and scoring chances 5-4 Flames in the second period.
The Senators pushed in the third period and took over the game for stretches. Unfortunately, for the Flames, Ottawa scored during those stretches.
Ottawa came into the Flames zone after Mikael Backlund lost the puck at the offensive blueline. Chris Tanev lost a puck battle behind the net and Backlund went to support him. That left Josh Norris wide open in front for a quick pass and shot that beat Jacob Markstrom to tie the game up at 1-1.
Midway through the period, Elias Lindholm’s line (and Noah Hanifin) got hemmed in their own zone. The Senators kept cycling and pressuring. Markstrom made an initial save on Thomas Chabot, but booted the rebound into the slot where Chris Tierney beat Noah Hanifin to the loose puck and beat Markstrom to make it 2-1. (Hanifin had been on the ice for 3:13 when Ottawa scored.)
Nikita Zaitsev added an empty net goal to make it a 3-1 Ottawa victory.
Shots were 13-8 Senators and scoring chances 9-5 Senators in the third period.
Why the Flames lost
The Flames started off well! But they faded. The Senators improved as the game went on and made adjustments. The Flames didn’t, and the Senators took advantage of a few miscues by the Flames when the game was in the balance.
The Flames, once again, weren’t blown out. But the details of their game were lacking in key, critical moments.
Giordano scored the lone Calgary goal for his 498th career point.
The turning point
Tierney’s go-ahead goal was a back-breaker but given how much the Senators had dominated play in the third period, it also seemed inevitable.
Data via Natural Stat Trick. Percentage stats are 5v5.
This and that
The Flames had new forward lines:
This was the first time all season that the Flames lost a game when leading after 40 minutes.
The Flames (15-16-3) head home. They’re back in action on Friday in the first instalment of three games in four nights against the Winnipeg Jets.
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