The Calgary Flames took on the Minnesota Wild in a game where early on it looked like the Wild would dominate. They started off in the first period getting two goals from Justin Fontaine and Matt Dumba to take a two goal lead. The Flames got one back late in the first period on a non-high stick goal from Jiri Hudler to make it two one. The Flames had a great second period, but fail to put anything home. They would finally answer in the third period on a goal by Lance Bouma who has been on quite a tear since being moved to the second line. The game went to overtime where Mikko Koivu made a terrific play to put one past Jonas Hiller. Here's how the game worked out statistically.
The Corsi Tables
|#||Period One||Period Two||Period Three||Total|
|CF||CA||CF%||CF REL%||CF||CA||CF%||CF REL%||CF||CA||CF%||CF REL%||CF||CA||CF%||CF REL%|
|Player Data from War-On-Ice.com|
|All data is five on five and score adjusted.|
|Player Data from War-On-Ice.com - Data 4v4 Score Adjusted
Mark Giordano lead the team in possession which is nothing surprising. What's considerably more surprising is that Jiri Hudler was dead last on the team in possession. Brandon Bollig also had a bad night in his return to the ice and Raphael Diaz, who is normally around even, finished well in the negatives as well. It's pretty amazing how Giordano and T.J. Brodie maintain these numbers on a continuous basis and lead the team even when the rest of the team isn't performing well.
For the Flames as a whole, this wasn't a good possession game, but better than where they're normally at. It obviously would have been quite nice to get an important two points (particularly with the Los Angeles Kings winning), but the Flames have been playing better as of late and at least they were able to come back and stretch this one into overtime. It's pretty clear that they need some help on defense with Brodie and Giordano almost always being the only guys in the positives and it will be interesting to see if they attempt to acquire a cheap defenseman or two at the deadline for a playoff push.
The Conventional Stats
|#||All Scenarios||5v5||4v5 PK||5v4 PP|
|TOI - Time on Ice | G - Goals | A - Assists | ISC - Individual Scoring Chances | ICF - Individual Corsi | PND - Penalties Drawn | PNT - Penalties Taken | FOW - Faceoffs Won | FOL - Faceoffs Lost | BS - Blocked Shots | HIT - Hits | OZS - Offensive Zone Starts | DZS - Defensive Zone Starts | FA - Fenwick Against | P - Points|
|All Data from war-on-ice.com|
Dennis Wideman didn't have the greatest game by possession standards, but he was able to drive scoring by adding two assists and he drew a penalty on Jason Pominville to give the Flames a power play so not all was bad for him. Comparatively Diaz's bad day carried over to a negative. It should be noted that he had a total of zero offensive zone starts to seven defensive zone starts so he carried a very tough task, though the same could be said for Deryk Engelland who posted much better possession.
Another negative thing to note about Hudler: he had 11 offensive zone starts to just two in the defensive zone and he still put up those bad possession numbers. While he did score the goal and he has been one of the best forwards for the Flames this season, this was hardly his best performance of the year. Hopefully he can rebound in the possession game while maintaining the scoring presence against Anaheim who is always a tough opponent for Calgary.
A final thing worth noting were the three penalties drawn. Calgary leads the league in penalty differential and tonight was no different as they drew three to Minnesota's one. This actually led to the Flames outshooting the Wild by a decent margin. For the game Calgary had 73 Corsi attempts to Minnesota's 58. Unfortunately for the Flames Dubnyk stood on his head for much of the game.
The W.O.W.Y. Table
|Attempts For/Attempts Against - Even Strength Corsi Numbers With - Data from Natural Stat Trick|
The table shows the number of attempts for over the number of attempts against. It's evident here that the game Hudler had wasn't exactly great regardless of which individual he was playing with and that he wasn't dragged down by anybody in particular. He was stuck on a change with the second line out and that hurt him a bit as Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan had already gotten off of the ice, but that line together wasn't exactly lighting it up themselves and anytime the fourth line face puncher has a better game than a top line player it has to be considered a bit of a disappointment.
The table also evidences the need for at least one additional defenseman. The limited attempts with Engelland on the ice is directly due to his number of minutes. Bob Hartley wasn't switching Diaz out with one of Wideman or Kris Russell like he had been in the past and Diaz had just 12 minutes of ice time while Engelland had a wee bit under nine. This is a bit of a trend and it forces them to play the other defensemen 22 plus minutes a night.
If they do decide to make a push for the playoffs, they should acquire somebody that can handle fifteen minutes or so a night and they should preferably be left handed so that Diaz can switch to his normal right hand side. The talent doesn't have to be anybody who is going to correct all of the team's woes, they just have to be somebody who can balance out the possession numbers a bit and have decent possession himself. An above average A.H.L.'er would do the trick and wouldn't cost much of anything to acquire.