Calgary Flames 3 - Nashville Predators 4 (OT)
2nd: 00:26 - Andersson (5) (Backlund, Tkachuk), 3:48 - Backlund (15) (N/A)
3rd: 19:13 - Mangiapane (16) (Backlund, Andersson)
1st: 19:28 - Sissons (9) (Blackwell, Tinordi)
2nd: 14:30 - Josi (15) (Ellis, Blackwell), 19:59 - Granlund (16) (Forsberg, Ellis)
3rd: 1:20 - Granlund (17) (Ellis, Duchene)
The Flames just couldn’t finish strong periods Thursday. Calgary controlled most of all three periods, putting up 39 shots on Juuse Saros by night’s end.
However, the team gave up the opening goal with just 32 seconds remaining in the first period, and then allowed the Predators to tie the game twice with under 6 minutes remaining in the third. Mikael Granlund’s first goal of the night came with under a second left in the game, and his second would end the affair just 1:20 into the extra frame.
Sandwiched between those Predator goals was another incredible performance by the “new” 3M line, especially Mikael Backlund. The center put up his second consecutive 3 point night, including an absolutely filthy toe drag to set up Andrew Mangiapane, for what should have been the game-winning goal, with just 47 seconds left.
Rasmus Andersson tied the game at one apiece 26 seconds into the second period, on a beautiful setup by surprise surprise, Mikael Backlund. Backlund added his own goal in the same frame, when Mattias Ekholm decided to be nice guy and kick the puck out of the air into his own net.
Elias Lindholm had a rare poor performance, ending -3 on the night. David Rittich played a great game until, again, about 6 minutes left in the third. Nashville’s fans certainly have the annoying power to get to a goalie, and Rittich is highly emotional. He never recovered after a relatively soft goal to Roman Josi, and the ensuing taunts.
The Flames still played a solid game against a very desperate Nashville team, but this has to be a valuable lesson in finishing games, and can not be repeated.
The Flames didn’t have a single opportunity on the powerplay, but extended their streak of 3+ goals in a game to 9 consecutive.
Flame of The Game
Mikael Backlund (F): Do the Flames just put Backlund on injured reserve until the All-Star break every year? The veteran center has been absolutely incredible this month, with 18 points in 13 games. He has 9 goals and 5 assists in his last 9.