The Calgary Flames have been hit hard with the flu bug lately and tonight's lineup was proof. There were last minute lineup changes which included Jonas Hiller in net, Mark Giordano and T.J. Brodie to start on defense, and Sean Monahan, Johnny Gaudreau, and David Jones up front. Kris Russell was in the lineup while Deryk Engelland, Brandon Bollig, and Josh Jooris were scratched. Lance Bouma is still on the injured list, but seems to be progressing well.
The first period was owned by the Flames as they took more shots on net, but they couldn't capitalize on their chances. Their power play is still questionable and led to a short cease in momentum. Long passes were also a problem which resulted in a few turnovers. Dennis Wideman made a great play in the offensive zone when he made a leap pass to Jiri Hudler who couldn't quite get the pass. Even though there was no goal on the play, it was nice to see some life out of Wideman. The Rangers got the only goal of the period and the score was 1-0 going into the second.
The middle frame looked messy and inconsistent. A long pass actually worked for Johnny but he couldn't bury it. Wideman showed up again and made more smart plays. Markus Granlund drew a penalty and the power play looked much better than most. A good penalty kill helped the Flames to regain their momentum and then they struck back. A giveaway by the Rangers led to a Gaudreau goal and then, 18 seconds later, another giveaway by the visitors landed the puck on the stick of Michael Frolik who made a beauty pass to Mason Raymond. The Flames were up 2-1 to end the second period.
The Rangers looked sluggish to start the third period and the Flames capitalized quickly with a breakaway goal by Johnny and a beauty goal by Joe Colborne to put the Flames up 4-1. The second half of the period was a disgrace for the Flames. The Rangers struck back with a goal to make it 4-2. Sam Bennett went down the tunnel for a while after taking a nasty hit against the boards, but he returned soon after. The Rangers just wouldn't quit and the Flames defense fell apart. Add to that the awful penalties being called and the visiting team tied the game to take it to overtime.
Because the Flames rock overtime, it was no surprise when T.J. Brodie, during a 2 on 1, scored when it was most important to give the Flames 9 straight wins at home and 5 consecutive wins overall. It should also be noted that the Calgary Flames have not lost a game in December so far. Hopefully they can keep up the great work while on the road.
Flame Of The Game
Markus Granlund. He sacrificed his body in every play, generated a few chances on net, and, in spite of the bad call against him at the end of regulation, he drew important penalties out of the opposition and gave the Flames the upper hand throughout the game. One of his best qualities is being able to draw penalties out of any other team, which makes Granlund an asset to the Calgary Flames.
The Flames are taking a road trip through Nashville, Dallas, St. Louis, and Detroit before returning home to host Winnipeg before Christmas.
"We're moving in the right direction and now we have to win on the road." - TJ Brodie pic.twitter.com/SrcpffC8T9— Calgary Flames (@NHLFlames) December 13, 2015