The Calgary Flames were not good in Saturday night in Vancouver. Well, Jacob Markstrom was, but everyone in front of him probably wants a mulligan. The Flames were out-shot, out-played and out-worked en route to a 3-1 loss to the Canucks.
The Flames were on their heels in the first period. They defended reasonably well, but they defended a lot. Jacob Markstrom was very sharp. Shots were 20-4 Canucks and scoring chances 12-9 Canucks in the opening period.
The Flames were still on their heels in the second period. They continued to defend well, but their details were a bit sloppy at times and it eventually led to a Canucks goal. The Flames killed off a penalty, but afterwards Sean Monahan couldn’t connect with Johnny Gaudreau on an outlet pass. Quinn Hughes jumped on the pass attempt, faked out Juuso Valimaki and beat Jacob Markstrom to give the Canucks a 1-0 lead (on Vancouver’s 29th shot of the game).
— Rob Williams (@RobTheHockeyGuy) February 14, 2021
75 seconds later, the Flames tied it up. Gaudeau made a nice touch-pass on a Rasmus Andersson feed, allowing Sam Bennett to blast it in from slot to make it a 1-1 hockey game.
Shots were 15-8 Canucks and scoring chances 14-6 Canucks in the second period.
The Canucks continued to dominate play in the third period. With 5:11 left in regulation, Tyler Myers walked in from the point, cut into the slot and beat Markstrom with a wrist shot (with some traffic) to give the home side a 2-1 lead.
Brandon Sutter added a late empty-netter to cement a 3-1 Canucks victory.
Shots were 11-7 Canucks and scoring chances 9-4 Canucks in the third period.
Why the Flames lost
They were out-shot by a country mile. It would’ve been downright criminal if they even got a point.
The shot totals reflected overall play. The Flames were good on the penalty kill, but they were out-played five-on-five and on their own power plays. In general, their details were lacking throughout this game.
Markstrom. He faced many, many good shots and was the only real reason this game was even close.
The turning point
Myers’ go-ahead goal seemed like a matter of time, but it seemed like sweet relief for a Canucks group that had dominated zone time and a back-breaker for a Flames group that couldn’t clear their own end for seemingly half of this game.
Data via Natural Stat Trick. Percentage stats are 5v5.
This and that
Connor Mackey made his NHL debut playing 13:56 on the third pairing.
Mikael Backlund left the game late in the first period with a lower body injury and didn’t return. In his absence, Sam Bennett played centre between Andrew Mangiapane and Milan Lucic and Josh Leivo replaced him on the right side of Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan.
The Flames (7-6-1) play the Canucks again in Vancouver on Monday night.