This is a review I already know is going to get a lot of shade, but it’s not untrue. The Calgary Flames played a strong hockey game for 60 minutes despite losing 7-1. They continuously outplayed the Oilers, especially in the 2nd and 3rd periods and did the majority of things right throughout the game. Sometimes the world’s best hockey talent shows up to play, and no matter what you do right he’s going to make it look like you did it wrong.
Legend: CF% = CorsiFenwick Ratio // SCF% = All situation Scoring Chance ratio // HDCF% = High Danger Chance Ratio // xGF% = Expected Goals Ratio
It’s a Team Game – CF% – 57.8%, SCF% – 64.0%, HDCF% – 62.05%, xGF% – 66.44%. Seriously this is hard to write just because I know nobody wants to hear it, they just want to see the W and the two standings points. I analyze things without bias to the best of my abilities. If I were to look at these numbers – without having actually watched the game – and tried to predict who won the contest I would pick Calgary 95/100 times. They out possessed, out chanced, and had better quality chances all night at 5v5 (SVA). So credit to McDavid and credit to Koskinen for making this game seem miles worse than it actually was.
Corsi King – Dillon Dube (71.27%) was able to secure top spot. 7 players had a CF% above 60 which is very very good and something we hadn’t seen happen often. Valimaki (61.72%) had a very good bounce back game. Andersson (67.90%) had a very good game, which usually bodes well for your partner, but that wasn’t the case in this one.
Corsi Clown – 4 players were down below 50%, normally that’s positive news but not this time. Mark Giordano (45.69%) was the opposite of Andersson which is surprising. Matthew Tkachuk (49.22%) was second last and I have no quarrels with how he played in this game. He was emotional, scrappy, and what we (the fans) want from him every night. Shut your teammates out and be yourself Chucky, if they don’t follow you then they’ll be the ones out the door.
Taken By Chance – Rasmus Andersson (73.54 SCF% // 72.06 HDCF%) was a machine in this one, finding a team high 7.85 high danger chances for while he was on the ice. Johnny Gaudreau (75.61% // 87.95%) had better ratios with Lindholm (76.90% // 86.19%) riding right beside him. The Flames got stuffed by Mikko Koskinen. This game could (and probably should) have been 7-5 but alas, they couldn’t finish.
xGF% – Dube (81.04%) is polarizing because some nights he’s quiet and some nights he’s impactful. There’s a noticeable trend with him playing better games with other strong forecheckers – like Lucic (70.06%) and Bennett (67.66%) – and weaker games when his linemates are more finesse guys.
Game Flow –
For real though… this just sucks. I just need to remind myself that hardly any fans care that they played well in a loss and the finished product is what they’re judged by. So if you’re looking for a positive here it is, the Flames played well, if you want to find a negative just look at Twitter – shouldn’t be hard to find.
Game Score – Noah Hanifin (1.60) led Flames players while Nikita Nesterov (-1.78) held the basement. Nesterov has had some very questionable play lately after a real strong start with Valimaki. He’s been in and out of the lineup while Mackey came in, but it’s really been suspect of late.
Shot Heatmap –
Flames were able to pepper Koskinen from the low slot and the mid slot, getting nothing to show for their hard work. Meanwhile the Oilers didn’t shoot unless in a high danger area and when they did shoot they scored. This game is so backwards based on the results vs. the numbers its unsettling.
In The Crease – Second straight struggle from Jacob Markstrom. 5v5 he let in 2 HD chances and one Medium danger chance on 10 shots. The Oilers PP has the potential to chase almost every goaltender out of the crease, but at 5v5 it wasn’t enough. It felt like Game 6 against Dallas where the Flames had finally started to play well and their goalie that drug them along to this point had an off night. Just can’t time everyone’s strong play together for any length of time.
Today’s Specials – I don’t normally discuss the PK but I’ve had enough. MOVE YOUR FEET. MOVE YOUR STICKS. Standing stationary and collapsing on your goaltender is an absolute ridiculous strategy. They play a weird triangle in the slot with a roaming attacker going after the Umbrella points. It gets them pretty discombobulated easily and ends up in the back of their net more often than not.
Player Spotlight – Glenn Gawdin – In limited ice time with a sheltered deployment Gawdin posted 58.46 CF% and a SCF% of 54.87% which would seem good, but he surrendered the worst HDCF% ratio on the team (23.97%) and the worst xGF% (43.46%) as well. We saw Connor Mackey have a rough first game this year already and he bounced back strong in his 2nd performance. Now that Gawdin has the jitters out of the way he can dial-in and focus on the hockey. Congrats on your NHL debut Gawdin.
Flashalytic’s 3 Stars –
1) Johnny Gaudreau
2) Rasmus Andersson
3) Dillon Dube
The Flames will continue on a road swing through Ontario starting with 2 games against the league leading Maple Leafs.
(Stats compiled from Naturalstattrick.com // Game Score from Hockeystatcards.com