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NHL 20 Sim: Lindholm wins crucial game in overtime, Tkachuk has Gordie Howe hat-trick

Gaudreau had another 2 goals, and Lindholm had 3 points

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Flames sim record: 7-2-1

Leaders: (G): Gaudreau 7, Monahan 5, Bennett 5 (A): Lindholm 10, Giordano 7, Monahan 7 (Pts): Monahan 12, Gaudreau 12, Lindholm 12


Calgary Flames 5 - Vegas Golden Knights 4 (OT)

Scoring

Calgary Flames

1st: 4:02- Dube (8) (Lucic), 4:30- Gaudreau (24) (Lindholm, Monahan)

2nd: 11:53- Tkachuk (25) (Mangiapane)

3rd: 13:14- Gaudreau (25) (Lindholm, Jankowski)

OT: 2:04- Lindholm (31) (Tkachuk, Brodie)

Vegas Golden Knights

1st: 11:13- Pirri (Marchessault, Stastny) 16:39- Karlsson (N/A)

2nd: None

3rd: 4:59- Nosek (Stephenson), 10:04 PPG- Stastny (McNabb. Smith)

OT: None

Recap

The more games we simulate, the stronger our belief our virtual team is essentially the same as the real Flames. In true Flames form, they were unable to hold a lead going into the third period, and actually found themselves down to the accursed Golden Knights midway through the third. Cam Talbot got another home start, and Robin Lehner looked to continue to baffle the Flames.

The Flames started the game strongly. Matthew Tkachuk answered the bell after Rasmus Andersson threw a big hit, and dropped Max Pacioretty.

That sparked the Flames. Milan Lucic obliterated Shea Theodore in Calgary’s end just a few minutes later, and set up Dillon Dube on a 2-on-none to open the scoring.

Johnny Gaudreau has been scorching hot after playing poorly in our first sim games. Elias Lindholm made a strong move to the front of the net, and Gaudreau squeezed the rebound between Lehner and the post just 28 seconds after Dube’s goal.

It wasn’t all positive in the first, as Brandon Pirri and William Karlsson would even the game up before the intermission.

It was a much tighter affair in the second. Tkachuk, shiner and all, drove hard to the net and was able to bury Andrew Mangiapane’s crossing pass midway through the period. Tkachuk has had a rough go in these sim games, and scored his first goal since we did the first one against the Rangers.

The Flames held that lead going into the third, but not for long. After Tomas Nosek evened the game early in the period, Paul Stastny snuck a shot through Talbot’s legs on the powerplay to give Vegas a 4-3 lead.

Johnny Hockey wasn’t going to allow the Flames to lose such a crucial matchup against a division foe, and went blazing right down the middle of the slot to finish off a pretty passing sequence between Lindholm, Mark Jankowski, and Erik Gustafsson.

The two teams went to extra time much to the dismay of the other Pacific teams. Elias Lindholm won an offensive zone faceoff back to TJ Brodie, who found a wide-open Tkachuk at the side of the net. Lehner made a superb save off the initial shot, but gave a juicy rebound back. Tkachuk didn’t shoot this time, but instead found Lindholm in the slot for the winner.

Flame of the Game

Vegas Golden Knights v Calgary Flames Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images

Matthew Tkachuk (F): Tkachuk hasn’t been his usual self in these sim games, but a Gordie Howe hat-trick certainly is a good sign. He also had 4 shots, 5 hits, and was +1.