If you only watched the first 20 minutes you would have thought the Flames were going to have a cake walk against the Ducks. And that’s why you have to watch all 60 minutes. Calgary dominated the first period, but the Ducks did what the Ducks do and the Flames fell right into the trap. Luckily Calgary had just enough in the end and kept Anaheim from collecting their league leading 10th point on the season for being tied after regulation. This one had a little bit of everything......what else would you expect?
1st Period: Flames 2 Ducks 0
Relentless. That’s the best word to describe the Flames first 20 minutes as they headed into the intermission with a 2 goal lead. The Calgary forecheck dominated the Ducks and Mike Smith killed off a 4 on 3 Ducks advantage with 2 massive saves to keep the Flames 2 goal lead intact.
Micheal Ferland continued his torrid pace, scoring the Flames first goal of the night, his 17th of the season. Johnny Gaudreau’s forecheck lead to a turnover and he fed Ferland out front to give the Flames a 1-0 lead.
44 seconds later Mark Giordano ripped a slap shot off of Kevin Bieksa’s shin and Calgary quickly jumped ahead 2-0. Gio’s 8th of the season came after Matthew Tkachuk’s extreme patience allowed Calgary’s offence to set up in the Ducks end.
1st Period Stats
2nd Period: Flames 2 Ducks 0
Nothing to speak of in regards to goal scoring in the second period, but the Ducks certainly pushed back for most of the period. Where the Flames had the most jump in the first 20, Anaheim clearly got the message in between periods. While they didn’t score, the Ducks did what they do best: play cheap and down in the gutter. Derek Grant clipped Mike Smith behind the net and all hell broke loose. Garnet Hathaway and Sam Bennett each found respective Ducks and decided to dance. Sam Bennett and Josh Manson went at it and Bennett pummeled him. Hathaway took an instigator penalty for his fight and get the gate for 10 minutes, but more importantly, the Flames stood up for each other and let the Ducks know they aren’t going anywhere. We aren’t even going to try to sort out the who and why of the penalties because it’s a mess. On to the 3rd period!
2nd Period Stats
3rd Period: Flames 3 Ducks 2
The 3rd was a little less of a mess fight wise, but the Ducks managed to get to the Flames as they always do. Anaheim’s first goal of the period came after they handed Calgary a 4 minute PP after Matthew Tkachuk would get a high stick in the chops. Jakob Silfverberg would intercept a pass and take it himself and beat Mike Smith to get the Ducks within one with the short handed tally. Just under 4 minutes later Ryan Getzlaf would bury his 4th of the season on a rocket from the point to tie it at 2-2.
While the Flames had some great chances in the period during 5 on 5 time, they still played poorly with the man advantage. Mike Smith, despite giving up 2 goals in the period played very solid and looked to get the Flames to overtime. That wasn’t needed. Dougie Hamilton would take a sweet feed from Micheal Ferland with 00:16 left and he would sink the Ducks with his 5th of the season to get the Flames 2 massive points.
3rd Period Stats
The Flames came out like a team that had been F-Bombed across the rink by their coach and looked great early. What the Flames did and ALWAYS seem to do is allow Anaheim to play their little cat and mouse game and Calgary inevitably fell into the trap. The officials didn’t help much tonight as Calgary took 3 very questionable penalties early in the game, but obvious things that should have been penalties on Anaheim were not called. Like it or not, the Ducks are masters at getting under the Flames skin and Calgary let them do it tonight, but they were lucky to come out with a win. Going to OT with Anaheim would have assured the Ducks a point, but with the loss all Anaheim is assured of is leaving Calgary losers.
Flame Of The Game
Micheal Ferland (F). Ferland had a 2 point night, continuing his hot streak since the break. He opened the scoring with a great shot, scoring his 17th of the season and he had the primary assist on Dougie Hamilton’s game winning goal. He also has 3 SOG and 3 hits and looked like he was going to throw down with Kevin Bieksa at one point. Solid night all around for #79.