1st Period: Monahan (6) (Ritchie) 5:38, Monahan (7) (Tkachuk, Lindholm) PPG 13:56
2nd Period: Backlund (5) (Mangiapane, Lucic) 7:20
3rd Period: None
1st Period: None
2nd Period: Jeff Petry (11) (Drouin, Edmundson) 14:20
3rd Period: None
Heading into Game 2 of the Darryl Sutter Era 2.0, it’s safe to say that there was a lot of excitement building for Flames fans, but we knew that Montreal would not be an easy opponent to beat after they rested up for a few days. Montreal was also returning Carey Price to the net who had been on fire lately, and the Flames countered with Jacob Markstrom again.
The only change to the Flames lineup for the game was Oliver Kylington coming in for Nikita Nesterov. Other than that the Flames rolled with the same lines and pairings that worked well on Thursday.
An early powerplay for the Flames was crucial to setting the tone early in the game as they pumped a number of dangerous looking chances towards the Montreal net but were unable to open the scoring.
However just minutes later Calgary would get on the board thanks to a hard forecheck by Brett Ritchie, who forced a turnover onto the stick of Sean Monahan. Monahan then walked out, spun all the way from his backhand to his forehand, and beat Price high from in tight for his 6th of the year, and 200th career goal! Oh where has the time gone!?
From there the Flames really controlled the pace of play in the period, at one point outshooting Montreal by a count of 16-3. During all that dominance, the Flames were rewarded again, this time with Monahan chipping home a loose puck in a scramble by the Montreal net. It was his first two goal game since February of last year, and gave the Flames a crucial 2-0 lead.
Montreal pushed a bit to start the second, but some excellent work by Andrew Mangiapane helped the Flames push their lead to 3-0. He outbattled two Montreal defenders on a puck going into the zone, got behind the net, and found a wide open Mikael Backlund who beat Price with a pretty shot.
The Canadiens got a goal back late in the period with Jeff Petry registering his 11th goal of the year which is top among defensemen, and it was a 3-1 game heading to the 3rd.
While Montreal got some shots early in the final frame, it was another Sutter masterpiece as the Flames did a pretty good job limiting their chances and it never really felt like Montreal was super close to getting back in the game aside from a kicked in goal that was waved off.
The Flames would pull out their second straight win over the Habs and second straight with Sutter behind the bench to improve their record to 13-12-3.
- I though the Flames defensive core looked better with Kylington in the lineup tonight, he really used his speed and offensive prowess well during his time on the ice. Perhaps Sutter can help him unlock his potential.
- Monahan has always been a streaky scorer and perhaps 199 was weighing on him, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him take off here
- I absolutely LOVE the Bennett-Ryan-Leivo fourth line. It is the epitome of good depth in the modern NHL.
- Glad to see Dillon Dube was okay after taking a hard fall into the boards and leaving the game briefly
- It really feels like Jacob Markstrom could benefit from such a tight defensive system. He carried the Canucks for a number of years in an extremely loose system, so this might let him really take off.
Flame of the Game
Sean Monahan (F): It feels like the easy answer, but he was really good tonight has looked engaged over the past few since the coaching change. Strong night for #23 and hopefully this is the start of a hot streak.