After playing the previous night against the Kings the Flames showed no sign of fatigue against the Ducks. A game that saw new forward lines deployed and some instant chemistry between two snakebitten players.
The opening frame saw Calgary have some lulls in their play. They didn’t come out with as much force as we had seen before, but also weren’t asleep at the wheel. The top line kept pushing play and the other new line combinations felt each other out. The first would end tied at 0.
It didn’t take long for the Ducks to get on the board in the second as Sonny Milano cleans up the garbage in front of the net after a failed zone exit led to sustained pressure. For the second straight game the Flames surrendered the first goal of the game, but it did nothing to phase them.
Blake Coleman busted his slump not 3 minutes later on a play that involved a great hand-eye pass from Sean Monahan. Alone in front Coleman made no mistake ending his 17-game goal drought. It was a start to a good period for the new look third line.
— NHL (@NHL) December 4, 2021
Elias Lindholm – he of just 2 goals in his last 17 games – also got found all alone in front of John Gibson. He went bar down short side for a beauty of a goal. The top line for the Flames continues to produce on a nightly basis.
Sean Monahan had a 12 game goal drought going himself before he too was found in front of the net with no defenders near him. That makes all three of the Flames first goals were scored by players being left uncontested in front of the Ducks net – bold strategy by the Ducks. Monahan’s goal would make it 3-1 in favour of Calgary, but Anaheim would score in the final minute and the second ends at Calgary 3 – Anaheim 2.
Early in the third the Ducks would capitalize on a powerplay off a delay of game (puck over glass) to tie the game. The third period would be semi-back and forth – with the Ducks looking slightly more dangerous for stretches. Ultimately the two teams could solve nothing in regulation and it headed to overtime.
The overtime was played at the same pace it take paint to dry – both teams playing super safe – and it led to a shootout. Johnny Gaudreau snipes one top shelf on his first attempt and Matthew Tkachuk does his best Jussi Jokinen impression for Calgary to come away with the W and the 2 points.
Why the Flames won
Their constant persistence in pursuit of the puck was one reason – Sutter benching the line of Dubé, Richardson, Pitlick in the third period didn’t hurt the team either. No matter the score the Flames never quit, they get the extra point in the shootout.
Sean Monahan appeared to play his best game of the season. He was more of an offensive threat and made some moves for scoring chances he hadn’t made in awhile. With a goal and assist he’s tonights Red warrior.
The turning point
The Ducks third goal early in the third period was able to tie the game up before both teams slogged it to overtime.
For a complete break-down of all the advanced numbers and statistics look to the “Beyond the boxscore” column that arrives the following day at 8am.
This and that
Blake Coleman broke his 17 game goal drought while Sean Monahan ended his 12 game slide.
December 5th – Sunday night – 8PM MST – Live from Vegas the Flames will play the third game of their Southwestern road trip.