Calgary didn’t need anything more than 20 minutes to win their second straight game, a 7-2 victory over the St. Louis Blues. The good guys scored 4 first period goals, got solid goaltending from David Rittich and took over first place in the Western Conference with the win.
We told you in our preview that the Blues were having trouble scoring and having trouble stopping the puck and both of those issues plagued them all game long. Calgary roared out to a 4-0 first period lead, chasing Jake Allen from the game after he stopped only 12 of the 16 shots he faced. The Flames showed no signs of slowing up after Matthew Tkachuk opened the scoring with his 15th of the season. You would think that a Flames team that played yesterday afternoon and struggles in St. Louis would have some troubles today, but St. Louis never showed up for this contest.
David Rittich showed no signs of rust or being tired after getting back to back starts, stopping 25 of the 27 shots that came his way. He probably should have had a shut out as a bad line change by the Flames and a failed clearing attempt led to odd man rushes that Rittich had no prayer of stopping. The win snapped a 2 game losing streak by the Flames in St. Louis.
1st: 5:88- (PPG) Tkachuk (15) (Giordano/Lindholm), 10:15- (SHG) Lindholm (17) (unassisted), 16:47- (PPG) Giordano (6) (Gaudreau/Tkachuk), 18:25- Quine (2) (Hanifin/Jankowski)
2nd: 5:26- Gaudreau (14) (Ryan)
3rd: 16:53- (Empty Net) Gaudreau (15) (Monahan/Lindholm), 18:44- (PPG) Quine (3) (Czarnik/Brodie)
St. Louis Blues
2nd: 2:29- Sundqvist (5) (Nolan/Dunn), 18:14- Bozak (4) (Dunn)
Calgary really cruised to this victory and the final 40 minutes were fairly uneventful. The Flames got two late goals in the 3rd period to add to their final total and the Calgary special teams were a major part of this victory. The PP unit scored three times and they got a short handed goal while on the PK. Calgary only took two penalties on the day and they killed both of those.
Calgary got some good news before this game as Mikael Backlund was taken off IR and he played a solid game, even though he didn’t make it onto the score sheet. Jon Gillies was also sent back to Stockton meaning Mike Smith is back and good to go, which is great news for the Flames.
Teams are going to have to look at how to slow the Flames top line down or they are going to be in for a long night. Johnny Gaudreau had his 6th three point night of the season (2G 1A), Sean Monahan had an assist and Elias Lindholm had a three point night. Matthew Tkachuk and Mark Giordano continued their strong play as each had two point nights as well. And that’s the beauty of this team right now: it’s not one line doing it all. The Flames are getting points and great play all throughout the lineup.
Flame Of The Game
Johnny Gaudreau: Gaudreau had another strong game as he collect three points on the night, giving him 45 on the season. He was also second on the Flames with 5 SOG.