The Calgary Flames played quite the game against the Edmonton Oilers in Game 5. But the Flames couldn’t quite hold a lead, nor could they get a key goal or key save when they needed it in the third period.
In an overtime heart-breaker, the Flames lost 5-4 to the Oilers. Their 2022 playoff run and season has come to its end.
The opening period was fairly low event to start, with the two teams playing a defensive style and combining for five shots in the first 10 minutes. The Flames only had one shot in that span.
Their second shot was a goal, though. Evan Bouchard couldn’t corral a dump-in behind the net. Mikael Backlund, forechecking, poked puck over to Blake Coleman in the corner. Coleman found Andrew Mangiapane open in front of the Oilers net. Mangiapane shelved a puck past a sprawling Mike Smith to give the Flames a 1-0 lead.
The Oilers had a few good looks later in the period, including a couple from Connor McDavid, but the defenders kept their shape in the Flames zone and Jacob Markstrom was sharp.
Shots were 6-5 Oilers (6-3 Oilers at five-on-five) and scoring chances were 8-6 Flames in the first period. (High-danger chances were 2-2.)
Midway through the second period, the Flames added to their cushion. On a shift in the Oilers zone, Blake Coleman won a puck battle but really had nowhere dangerous to pass the puck. So he opted to rim the puck around the end boards to the far point to Michael Stone. Stone’s shot was deflected by Backlund and beat Smith over his shoulder short-side to give the Flames a 2-0 lead.
The Oilers got one back a little later, though. The Oilers won a face-off and cycled the puck to the point. With a few bodies obscuring Markstrom’s vision, Darnell Nurse’s shot found a way into the net to cut Calgary’s lead to 2-1.
The Flames responded to that Edmonton goal with a lengthy shift by the top line, featuring a few good scoring chances. But the Oilers collected the puck and Zach Hyman led a three-on-two rush the other way. Hyman’s initial shot hit Markstrom and trickled into the crease, where Jesse Puljujarvi poked in the loose puck to tie the game at 2-2.
Dillon Dube took a charging penalty in the Flames zone, sending Edmonton to the power play. 32 seconds into the man advantage, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins fired a shot through Noah Hanifin’s legs that careened off his leg and wobbled right to Hyman at the post to Markstrom’s right. He jammed the puck into the gaping net to give Edmonton a 3-2 lead.
But on the very next shift, the Flames’ top line got zone time in the Oilers zone. Oliver Kylington passed the puck to Johnny Gaudreau below the red line. Gaudreau walked out and put a low shot past Smith to tie the game at 3-3.
On the very next shift, 12 seconds later, the Flames held the puck in at the offensive blueline and Nikita Zadorov’s initial shot from the point was blocked, but wobbled right over to Calle Jarnkrok. His shot beat Smith to give the Flames a 4-3 lead.
But on the very next shift, the Oilers got some zone time and some bodies in front of Markstrom. They cycled to the point where Evan Bouchard put a shot off the post to Markstrom’s right and into the net to tie the game up at 4-4.
Shots were 18-13 Flames (16-11 Flames at five-on-five) and scoring chances were 14-10 Flames in the second period.
The Flames nearly took the lead with 5:57 left in regulation. Backlund’s shot off the rush trickled through Smith’s padding (under his arm) and laid in the crease. Coleman drove the net and directed the puck into the net with his skate as he was battling with Cody Ceci. The goal was originally called on the ice, but it was reviewed by the situation and called back due to being ruled as a kicked-in puck.
Neither team was able to get the go-ahead goal in regulation.
Shots were 14-7 Oilers (all at five-on-five) and scoring chances 13-2 Oilers in the third period.
The Flames had a few looks in overtime, but McDavid scored 5:03 into overtime after a defensive zone turnover along the wall (Draisaitl stopped an attempted pass up the wall by Noah Hanifin) to give Edmonton the 5-4 victory.
Shots were 6-2 Flames (all at five-on-five) and scoring chances were 4-1 Flames in overtime
Why the Flames lost
The Flames played their game in this hockey game. They battled, they checked well, and they generally played a smart two-way game. They played an imperfect hockey game for the first two periods. They made enough mistakes with the lead that the Oilers were able to draw even.
For the fourth time in five games in this series, the Flames were in a situation where they would win the game if they won the third period. They couldn’t find a way to do it, and so their season is over.
We’ve got a pair: Backlund and Chris Tanev.
Backlund played like a man possessed in this game, and Tanev led the team in ice time for the first two periods and was just shy of the team lead in the third period.
The turning point
It’s hard not to point to Coleman’s disallowed goal. It’s something we’re gonna hear about for awhile.
But the Flames had several looks in overtime that the Oilers managed to stymie before McDavid’s game-winner.
Percentage stats are 5v5 and via Natural Stat Trick. Game score via Hockey Stat Cards.
This and that
The two teams combined for four goals in a span of 1:11 in the second period, setting a new NHL playoff record for that outburst. (The previous record was four goals in 1:33, set by Toronto and Philadelphia in 1976.)
The Flames’ season has come to its end.