It was a Blue Monday for the St. Louis Blues in Calgary. After opening the scoring in the first period, the Blues were utterly dominated by the Calgary Flames for the balance of the game.
The Flames won a very one-sided game over the Blues by a 7-1 score.
The Blues opened the scoring early on, as the Flames lost a board battle along the wall in their own zone. Klim Kostin intercepted the puck and a couple quick passes later, Tyler Bozak deposited the puck into a wide-open net (Jacob Markström had zero chance) to make it 1-0 Blues.
51 seconds later, the Flames answered back. Off a broken play in the neutral zone, Erik Gudbranson opted to dump the puck in. He did so and Matthew Tkachuk beat out the Blues defenders for the loose puck. A quick pass to Nikita Zadorov and a point shot later, the Flames had tied the game at 1-1.
The Flames drew a penalty off a face-off and their power play went to work, generating five shots and tons of good looks but not scoring. After the power play, though, the Blues turned over the puck in the neutral zone and Johnny Gaudreau led an odd-man rush. Dillon Dube cut to the net, bringing a defender with him and opening up Chris Tanev in the slot (as the trailing Flames player) and Tanev beat Jordan Binnington to make it 2-1 Flames.
The Flames went back to the power play after the Blues got nabbed for too many men. 40 seconds into their advantage, the Flames got a rush chance. Robert Bortuzzo sprawled out to block Tkachuk’s pass into the slot. He failed, effectively wiping Binnington out, and Elias Lindholm scored from the slot to make it 3-1 Flames.
Shots were 17-7 Flames (12-4 Flames at five-on-five) and scoring chances 8-2 Flames in the first period.
The wheels absolutely fell off for the Blues in the second period. The Flames had the first 11 shots on goal and utterly dominated play.
The Flames made it 4-1 on an early power play. The Blues couldn’t clear the zone, Rasmus Andersson passed to Tkachuk, and Tkachuk found Sean Monahan in front of the net. It was academic at that point and the Flames padded their lead.
A little later on, another Flames goal. Blake Coleman led a Flames three-on-one rush. He tried to pass it to the slot but the puck just missed its intended recipient. But the Flames recovered the puck. Mikael Backlund’s shot was stopped, but Blake Coleman won a battle with a defender in front of the net and poked in the loose rebound to make it 5-1 Flames.
A little later, Gaudreau got a rush chance but a defender put a stick into his hands so he couldn’t get the shot off. But the Blues couldn’t clear the zone! So a couple quick passes from Gaudreau to Tkachuk to Adam Ruzicka led to the rookie putting one past Binnington to make it 6-1 Flames.
And late in the period, Tkachuk sent Gaudreau in alone on a partial breakaway and he picked the top corner on Binnington to give the Flames a 7-1 lead.
Shots were 18-2 Flames (15-2 Flames at five-on-five) and scoring chances 16-1 Flames in the second period.
The Flames were largely content to sit back and let the clock run out in the third period. They didn’t give the Blues too much and defended fairly well.
Shots were 13-12 Flames (13-9 Flames at five-on-five) and scoring chances were 15-7 Flames in the third period.
Why the Flames won
Two things happened here.
First, the Blues came in after being out-shot 39-17 in Vancouver on Sunday night but getting bailed out by Husso in net and a few skilled offensive players. The Blues got zero breaks on Monday night, though, and you can make an argument that few, if any, Blues were any good on this occasion.
Second, the Flames were very sharp. Aside from some early bobbles in their own end, they executed well and buried their chances. They wildly out-chanced the Blues when this game was up for grabs, and to their credit did kept coming at them offensively for much of the rest of the game.
The Blues were quite bad, but the Flames were also quite good.
Tkachuk had five assists. Gaudreau had a goal and three assists. Let’s give it jointly to them.
But the Flames had a lot of nice contributions from just about everybody on their team.
The turning point
The Blues didn’t love the too many men penalty in the first period. But they were incredibly disorganized on their penalty kill and the Flames’ third goal seemingly killed any chances they had of climbing back into this hockey game.
Percentage stats are 5v5 and via Natural Stat Trick. Game score via Hockey Stat Cards.
This and that
This was the first time since Mar. 3, 2021 that the Flames scored seven or more goals in a game. (That was a 7-3 win over Ottawa.)
15 different Flames skaters had shots on goal. 12 different Flames skaters registered points.
The Flames (19-12-6) are headed back on the road! They’re in Columbus on Wednesday to visit the Blue Jackets and have a return engagement with the Blues in St. Louis on Thursday.
Looking to up your fantasy hockey game? DailyFaceoff has the tools you need for both daily and season-long fantasy leagues, including a lineup optimizer, daily projections, and a whole lot more. Sign up for the DailyFaceoff tools here.