Calgary Flames can’t figure out Ben Bishop, get shutout by Stars

DALLAS, TX - FEBRUARY 27: Calgary Flames goaltender Jon Gillies (32) blocks a shot during the game between the Dallas Stars and the Calgary Flames on February 27, 2018 at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, TX. (Photo by Matthew Pearce/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
DALLAS, TX - FEBRUARY 27: Calgary Flames goaltender Jon Gillies (32) blocks a shot during the game between the Dallas Stars and the Calgary Flames on February 27, 2018 at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, TX. (Photo by Matthew Pearce/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /
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The Calgary Flames and Dallas Stars are both fighting for a playoff spot as they battle against each other tonight. Let’s see how this game went down.

The Calgary Flames and Dallas Stars are somewhat in the same boat right now. The Stars are in the first wildcard spot with 74 points in 62 games and the Flames are one spot out of the playoffs with 73 points in 63 games. It’s quite neck and neck with about six teams in the Western Conference right now.

Chris Stewart will be starting tonight after being picked up off of waivers by the Flames yesterday. He’ll be starting on that top line alongside Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan. Jon Gillies will also be starting his third straight game and has won his other two starts so far this season. He had an incredible game against the Colorado Avalanche on Saturday, where he stopped 28 of 29 shots and the only goal he let in was somewhat of a flukey goal that came from centre ice, bounced off the post, off of him, and in. He rebounded quite well after that for the rest of the game.

Nick Shore won’t make his Flames debut yet. He was acquired by the Flames yesterday in a trade for a 2019 seventh-round pick to the Ottawa Senators.

Related Story: Flames acquire Nick Shore from Senators

All this being said, let’s check out tonight’s game.

First period

It was a slow start for the Calgary Flames, unlike their last two games. The Stars got a jump early, but around the five-minute mark, the Flames started to wake up. Travis Hamonic got a slapper on the net which was followed by a slight breakaway for Sean Monahan (by a good backhand pass from Chris Stewart.. weird), then another good chance for Mark Jankowski.

The Flames later went on a 5on3 powerplay for 1:55. Some crossbars and Ben Bishop being rude later and they couldn’t score. But they had chances. Shortly after, the Stars went on a powerplay, which they also got some chances and a post, but the Flames managed to kill it off.

At one point, Jon Gillies had a glorious save but with less than a minute left in the period, Sean Monahan couldn’t get the puck to clear his zone, Remi Elie got the puck to Devin Shore who somewhat fooled Dougie Hamilton and Gillies and scored. Gillies somewhat lost his net and it was definitely a goal that he’d like back and that he should have had. Let’s hope he rebounds well like he did against the Avs.

Second period

The Calgary Flames started the second period on the PK with a late Garnet Hathaway penalty. The Stars had some good chances and put three shots, but everything was stopped. Right after, the Flames went on the powerplay.

Some decent chances including one great chance from Dougie, with some bad giveaways by the Flames, and this would be another scoreless powerplay.

After some good plays by Bennett, he would soon take a penalty. On the Stars powerplay, Jamie Benn had a great pass to Tyler Seguin who ripped it past Gillies. We’ve got a two-goal game. However, as Benn made that pass, Travis Hamonic got held and bench boss Glen Gulutzan wasn’t happy about it which resulted in a bench minor to the Flames. Adding insult to injury, now there’s a Flames penalty.

The Stars had one great chance which Gillies made a great save and after that, the Flames looked strong on the PK. Right after, the Flames would have their turn on the powerplay again.

They had great chances, some which went wide, had five shots on net, but Bishop was being rude and stopping everything again. It’s still a two-goal lead for the Stars. Shortly after, the Flames would go on the penalty this time (there hasn’t been a lot of 5on5 this period). The Flames had an incredible shorthanded chance from Mikael Backlund, back to Garnet Hathaway who spot TJ Brodie who snuck on the side and had a great chance, but Ben Bishop was being rude again.

The Flames on the same PK had another great shorthanded chance from Michael Frolik to Matt Stajan who had two good shots, but no goal. With just six seconds left, the Flames took another penalty so would be starting the third on the PK. Even though they outshot the Stars 17-8 that period, it’s still a two-goal lead for the Stars.

Third period

Like I said, the Calgary Flames started this period out on the penalty-kill. But again, they didn’t allow the Stars to get many chances, so this will remain at a two-goal game. Shortly after, we had off-setting minors and one roughing call on Tyler Pitlick, so the Flames would now go on the powerplay. Is it even worth it to continue talking about the powerplay since this whole game is basically a powerplay?

The Flames, again, had some chances, but couldn’t seem to buy a goal tonight.

The Flames were absolutely obliterating the Stars in the first half of the third period, but couldn’t seem to figure out Ben Bishop.

They got a late powerplay, but again, they couldn’t figure Bishop out. Despite outshooting the Stars 38-26, they fell 2-0 in this game.

DALLAS, TX – FEBRUARY 27: Dallas Stars center Devin Shore (17) scores a goal against Calgary Flames goaltender Jon Gillies (32) during the game between the Dallas Stars and the Calgary Flames on February 27, 2018 at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, TX. (Photo by Matthew Pearce/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
DALLAS, TX – FEBRUARY 27: Dallas Stars center Devin Shore (17) scores a goal against Calgary Flames goaltender Jon Gillies (32) during the game between the Dallas Stars and the Calgary Flames on February 27, 2018 at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, TX. (Photo by Matthew Pearce/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /

Post-game thoughts

Chris Stewart never belonged on that first line

Despite one good backhand pass to Sean Monahan, Chris Stewart looked bad on that first line. He’s quite slow and wasn’t exactly noticeable. He would have room to make a play and wouldn’t. In the third period, he finally fell down a spot, but instead, replaced Michael Frolik on the second line for some reason.

The Flames should either stick him on the fourth line next game or have him sit out.

Powerplay and PK looked good

Despite going 0/6 on the PP tonight, they still looked good and still had good chances. But again, Ben Bishop was being rude tonight. And although they allowed one PP goal against, their PK, for the most part, looked good. They were aggressive and didn’t let the Stars get a lot of chances.

Mark Giordano needs to hit the net more

Mark Giordano has a hard shot, especially on the PP, but he keeps hammering his shots wide. He might be more effective if he got more wrist shots with Matthew Tkachuk as a screen, but his slapshots from the blue line aren’t exactly working out very well.

Next: How the Flames fared at trade deadline

That’s all for tonight. Let’s hope the Calgary Flames can find a way to rebound tomorrow night against the Colorado Avalanche.