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Flames Strike Late to Down Blackhawks Again

The top line provided the offense for the Flames tonight

Calgary Flames v Chicago Blackhawks Photo by Chase Agnello-Dean/NHLI via Getty Images

The Calgary Flames began their road trip looking to get off on the right foot against the Chicago Blackhawks. These two teams were meeting each other for the second time in as many games, coming off of Calgary’s 4-3 overtime win on Saturday.

1st Period: Calgary Flames 0, Chicago Blackhawks 1

After an extended offensive zone shift Micheal Ferland would take a boarding penalty to send the Blackhawks to the powerplay. Chicago would take advantage after T.J. Brodie failed to clear the puck and Alex DeBrincat would beat Mike Smith with a shot from the circle. 1-0 Blackhawks

As the period continued the game would open us as both teams got some glorious scoring chances including a post from Dougie Hamilton. The first line was having a great period, creating some high quality chances and one would lead to Ferland being hauled down and sending the Flames to the powerplay.

Shortly into the man advantage Chicago would take another penalty to send the Flames to a 1:40 5-on-3. The Flames would provide yet another embarrassing powerplay with only one shot. Pathetic.

The Flames had 21 shot attempts in the period, but only six made it to the net.

First Period Stats

Team Goals Shots PP
Team Goals Shots PP
Flames 0 6 0/2
Blackhawks 1 11 1/1

2nd Period: Calgary Flames 1, Chicago Blackhawks 1

Early in the period Sean Monahan would bust into the attacking zone on a 2-on-1. He’d draw the Blackhawk defender over to him before sliding a pass to Dougie Hamilton who would casually deposit the puck into the net to tie the game. The goal was Hamilton’s ninth of the season. Johnny Gaudreau also had an assist on the goal. Tied 1-1

A few minutes later after another dismal Flames powerplay, the Hawks would seem to get ahead with the puck slipping into the net after a scramble. Of course this scramble involved Ryan Hartman knocking over Smith and giving him a skate to the groin.

After the NHL first reviewed for kicking and deemed it a good goal, Calgary would challenge for goalie interference and win it to keep the game tied.

Chicago would get two powerplays during the period but despite some tense moments, Calgary would kill them both off. More worrying was Matthew Tkachuk heading down the tunnel with what looked like a hand injury. He would return a few minutes later.

Sam Bennett would take a bad penalty with 2.9 seconds to go, running into Jeff Glass behind the Hawk net to send Chicago to another powerplay heading to the third.

Second Period Stats

Team Goals Shots PP
Team Goals Shots PP
Flames 1 6 0/1
Blackhawks 0 12 0/3*

3rd Period: Calgary Flames 3, Chicago Blackhawks 2

Calgary would kill off the remaining penalty to Bennett before heading to their own powerplay shortly after. Nothing again.

The period would be much less open than the first two as both teams took a conservative approach. With 6:43 to go Hamilton would be whistled for hooking to give Chicago a late powerplay. The Flames penalty kill would come up big again.

With 3:30 to go the Flames would take the lead with a Michael Stone shot beating Glass from the point. Originally it looked like Gaudreau tipped it so it was reviewed for a high stick and it was close but it was confirmed to be a good goal. I still don’t know if the right call was Stone’s goal or not but that’s what it is at time of posting. The goal would be Stone’s third of the year from Brodie and Ferland. 2-1 Flames.

Sean Monahan would hit the empty net with 1:51 to go and make it 3-1. His 25th goal of the year. Gaudreau with another point. 3-1 Flames.

Chicago would get a late goal with only six seconds ago to ruin Mike Smith’s great numbers on the night but who cares. 3-2 Flames.

Third Period Stats

Team Goals Shots PP
Team Goals Shots PP
Flames 2 11 0/1
Blackhawks 1 13 0/1

Final Thoughts

  • No matter how the second goal ends up being officially ruled, Johnny Gaudreau has at the very least tied his point total from last season with 61 points, this time in only 53 games.
  • The Flames had 61 shot attempts but only 23 pucks made it on net.
  • Tonight was definitely a night where the top players were the top players and it paid off
  • Calgary’s powerplay continues to look horrible
  • Calgary’s penalty kill looked alright, allowed one and got bailed out by Smith a few times
  • Tonight was Calgary’s first regualtion win in Chicago since March 2008
  • Mike Smith is good

Flame of the Game

Calgary Flames v Chicago Blackhawks Photo by Bill Smith/NHLI via Getty Images

Sean Monahan (F): If Monahan has one thing going for him, it’s his consistency. That is a trait difficult to find in the NHL these days but Monahan has it as he had yet another solid night. He won’t dazzle you with dangles or playmaking to the extent of Johnny, but he does everything you need a top centre to do for your team. A goal and an assist give him 47 points in 52 games, he’s well on the way to shattering his career high point totals.