Calgary Flames lose in OT to Penguins in a must-win game

PITTSBURGH, PA - MARCH 05: Evgeni Malkin
PITTSBURGH, PA - MARCH 05: Evgeni Malkin /

The Calgary Flames are heading into this game tonight desperate for a win. They basically need to win 65% of their remaining games to make the playoffs. Let’s check out how the game went down tonight.

The Calgary Flames and Pittsburgh Penguins play their second and final matchup of the season. The Flames have won their last five games against the defending champs. They’re currently on a three-game losing streak and are desperate for anything to go their way right now.

Jon Gillies will be between the pipes tonight. He’s lost his last two starts and is also hoping for some better luck tonight.

At this point, the Flames basically need to win at least 65% of their remaining games to make the playoffs. A win tonight will be big for the club and will give them some boost of confidence they desperately need. The good news is that Micheal Ferland returns to the lineup tonight and will be on that top line alongside Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan.

Related Story: Flames Daily - Micheal Ferland finally returns

Chris Stewart, Tanner Glass, and Nick Shore will all be scratched tonight.

Let’s see how this game went down.

First period

Can we just skip the first four minutes of the game? The Penguins got a goal less than three minutes into the game that was deflected twice before it found the back of the net. Not Gillies’ fault, it’s quite hard to stop pucks that deflect a couple of times.

But 55 seconds later, Gillies tried playing the puck behind the net but it got somewhat caught in his skates and the puck found Evgeni Malkin. It’s now 2-0 Pens. Bit of a rough start for Gillies.

A little less than six minutes in, the Calgary Flames applied some great pressure from the fourth line. About 30-40 seconds of constant pressure and they finally cut the lead to one with a goal from captain Mark Giordano. The shift of the season for the fourth line?

A few minutes later, the 3M line goes down and Mikael Backlund, as Mikael Backlund does best, dances around the Pens’ best defenceman and makes a fool out of him and ties the game up with a little over nine minutes left. I’m sure that’s one Kris Letang wants that one back. It’s now a tied game!

Later in the period, there would be some 4on4 hockey with off-setting penalties. With less than a minute left, Backlund was going towards the net, got pushed by Brian Dumoulin and Dumoulin ran into his own goalie as Backlund went to the side. But Backlund got a goalie interference penalty. Something the Flames and people on Twitter weren’t fans of.

The Flames outshot the Pens 16-11 and outplayed them at even-strength with 28 shot-attempts compared to 16 for the Pens. Let’s head to the second period.

Second period

Calgary Flames
Calgary Flames /

Calgary Flames

The Calgary Flames started the second period on the PK which they thankfully killed off. If the Pens scored, Flames Twitter would have lost their minds. We then got lots of back-and-forth action for both teams and it remained scoreless for a while.

The Flames finally went on the powerplay a little past the midway mark of the period but it’s the Flames and they couldn’t capitalize and couldn’t manage a shot. Near the dying seconds of the PK, the Pens got a small chance but this game remained 2-2.

The Flames shortly after took a penalty and would be on the PK against the best PP team in the league. Uh oh.

The Flames penalty killers did a great job initially but in the last 30 seconds, the Pens got two good chances. It’s still a goalless period.

After a chance in the Pens end, the Pens came back the other way and with just about three minutes left, Kris Letang gave his team the lead again. But no sweat, because the Flames fourth line, who have been quite a force tonight, went back the other way in the dying seconds of the game. TJ Brodie set up a great pass to Troy Brouwer who tied things up again with just 2.4 seconds left in the period.

The Pens outshot the Flames 11-8 in that period. Let’s head to the final frame.

Third period

There was again some back-and-forth between these two teams and the Calgary Flames had a good amount of scoring chances. Troy Brouwer also started this period out on the top-line for some reason. To be fair, he’s had a good game. But also, he’s Troy Brouwer.

The Flames had a powerplay and of course, at a crucial point in the game where they can put themselves on top, we can anticipate what happened. At one point, the Pens shot it down on the PK about from the other end of the ice and Gillies stopped it. Or did he?

It started to trickle through his legs and got on the line, but thankfully it didn’t cross the line.

In the last couple minutes of the game, the Pens really applied the pressure and it seemed like they were going to end this one in regulation. But off to OT we go.


The Pens initially got possession, but the Flames came back and applied pressure as well. At one point, Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan basically had a 2on0 breakaway and Gaudreau missed the net. Because of course, that would happen.

The Pens went back the other way and with a nice pass from Malkin to Phil Kessel, Gillies thought Kessel would shoot, but he passed it to Justin Schultz who basically had an open net as a result. That’s an OT loss for the Flames in a must-win game and they broke their win-streak against the Pens.

Next: Flames Roundtable - Post-trade deadline, playoff hopes

I mean. At least they got a point?