The Calgary Flames had a huge comeback win today against the Philadelphia Flyers as Sean Monahan scored his first career hat trick.
Well, it was a big one for the Calgary Flames. After getting handed to by the Detroit Red Wings on Wednesday night where they lost 8-2 and a Matthew Tkachuk suspension occurred, they have to prove themselves. And they did just that against the Philadelphia Flyers today.
Heading into this game, Johnny Gaudreau was on an eight-game point-streak (4-game goal-streak) with 14 points in that stretch. He also had six points in five games against the Philadelphia Flyers. His eight-game point-streak is the second longest current active point-streak in the NHL, right after Anze Kopitar. Micheal Ferland was also on a five-game goal-streak and he was looking to improve on that.
They would do so while facing a teammate from last season, Brian Elliott. This would go against Mike Smith on the other end of the ice, who missed last game due to an upper-body injury. But he was well and ready to go today.
The Flyers opened up the first period stronger than the Calgary Flames. And because of this, they opened up the scoring early with their first shot on net by Brandon Manning less than two minutes in. The Flames for the first few minutes in the first period after that looked somewhat disorganized in the neutral zone. But around seven minutes in, Micheal Ferland spots Johnny Gaudreau up ahead and passes him to it. Johnny on the breakaway… and scores! That’s now points in nine straight games for Johnny Hockey.
A little later, after the play was called, Kris Versteeg took an unnecessary penalty and the Flames penalty killing lately has been anything but good. With a big rebound for Sean Couturier, he gets the Flyers their lead back with less than seven minutes left in the period.
Minutes later, Ivan Provorov gave the Flyers a 3-1 lead with a good wrist shot.
Late in the period, the Flames had a 4 on 3 powerplay opportunity and the Flyers had a good shorthanded breakaway chance. But Mike Smith came up strong and made a big save. The Flames managed to generate a couple of scoring chances on their powerplay, but nothing that showed up on the scoresheet.
The Calgary Flames head into the second period down 3-1. The Flyers are 4-0-1 when leading after one period. And the Flames headed being 2-3-0 when trailing after one period. So the Flyers seemed to have the advantage here.
The Flames took an early penalty, but they were much more aggressive on this penalty-kill than they were in the first period. Then the Flyers took a penalty which led to some 4on4 before the Flames got a powerplay themselves. Kris Versteeg had a great shot which Sean Monahan got the tip in, now cutting the lead to just one again. This makes up for Versteeg’s bad penalty he took earlier.
The Flames got another powerplay a few minutes later, and with a nice pass from Johnny Gaudreau, Sean Monahan gives the Flames a tie game! That’s two powerplay goals in one game for Monahan.
Five minutes later, the Flames were unable to clear their own zone and the Flyers got the lead again with a goal from Nolan Patrick, who just returned from injury last game. But that lead wouldn’t last long. Moments later, the Flames would get yet another powerplay.
With a blocked shot from the Flyers, there was a player down on the ice, and Sean Monahan makes it 4-4. That’s his first ever career hat-trick! However, I can definitely see why Flyers fans were frustrated about that.
While the rule states that even if there’s a player down on the ice, if the other team has possession and an impeding scoring opportunity, then the whistle won’t go. Which I don’t agree with. I think player safety should come first over everything, so while I’m happy Monahan got a hat trick, I definitely see the frustration on the other side.
This was also the first hat trick scored against the Flyers since 1994, which was scored on by Theo Fleury too, ironically enough, it was a Flame.
For the majority of the third period, the Flyers dominated. There were moments where the Calgary Flames were stuck in their own end for minutes at a time. But luckily, the score remained tied. In the third, the Flyers had 22 shot attempts 5on5 whereas the Flames only had 11.
In the period, Sam Bennett and Mark Jankowski each had a shot off the post (unlucky). Then in the last two minutes of a tie-game, Matt Stajan takes a penalty, which is very on brand for the Flames. But luckily, they managed to kill it off and this one would need extra time.
So off to OT we go. The Flames are pretty good in OT I hear.
Heading into this OT period, the Flames were 2-0 in OT and 2-0 in shootout. At one point, Mikael Backlund and Michael Frolik had a two on one breakaway chance (thanks Mikes) and Backs passes it to Fro and he scores! The Calgary Flames continue to improve in extra time and had a huge comeback win to go 1-1-0 so far on this road trip.
After that OT goal, Brian Elliott looked frustrated and slammed his stick in the net. Forever a Flame candidate?
Gaudreau had a three-point night to improve to 29 points in 19 games. That’s still third in the league right behind Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov. Micheal Ferland unfortunately didn’t get a goal, but he improved to a six-game point streak. Monahan’s six goals ties him for sixth place in the league.
The Gaudreau – Monahan – Ferland line are now the second highest scoring line in the entire league with 28 goals. Again, right behind the Stamkos and Kucherov line. Gaudreau’s nine-game point-streak is the longest of his career. He’s projected at 124 points on the season so far. Monahan’s projected to have his first 40 goal season for the first time in his career.
The Flames’ next game will be their second meeting with the Washington Capitals this season on Monday evening. Matthew Tkachuk will return to that game, maybe slightly angry.