The Flames are headed to sunny St. Paul, Minnesota on Tuesday to play their second game in a home-and-home series against the Wild. Here’s what I’ll be watching for ahead of the game, betting odds included.
So I’ve been on vacation for the last week and a bit. Anything happen with the Calgary Flames that I should know about?
A ten-game winning streak, you say? Elias Lindholm scored in eight consecutive games? Both tied franchise records!
Jeez, I should go on vacation more often.
Of course the team lost to the Vancouver Canucks in one of the most spectacular special teams breakdowns I have ever seen. They would, however, follow that up with a decisive 7-3 win against Minnesota in the first game of a home-and-home series. The second game is Tuesday.
This is what I’ll be looking at.
As awesome as the Calgary Flames’ 10-game winning streak was, we all knew it wasn’t going to last forever. Fatigue from a compressed post-COVID schedule would set in eventually. And even the best teams drop a heartbreaker from time to time. Keeping all that in mind, the loss to Vancouver can be forgiven.
And why, as fans, wouldn’t we forgive them? The boys decidedly bounced back with a multi-goal win over Minnesota. There was plenty of secondary scoring to boast about with Erik Gudbranson, Tyler Toffoli and Andrew Mangiapane all getting 5-on-5 goals. Blake Coleman even scored short-handed!
Even so, I agree with Matthew Tkachuk’s comments, made in his post-game media availability (video below). Tkachuk, though happy with the win, said he wasn’t satisfied. He went on to say that Calgary Flames want to be known as team that gets the lead and “can shut a team down and push them right out of [their] building.”
He was referring, of course, to a pair of Minnesota goals early in the third period that were, at least to my eye, direct results of Flames’ defensive breakdowns.
Again, hard to disagree. This is not a team that should be taking their foot off the gas late in games, no matter what the score differential. I’m looking forward to seeing what the team has ins store on Tuesday.
Thankfully, it doesn’t look like the rookie D-man is going to lose a moment of ice time.
After an awkward mix-up with Wild forward Ryan Hartman, Kylington silenced the ‘Dome after crashing, bucket first, into the boards to the left of the Flames net. It was an awful sight. But the rookie Swede is no worse for wear. It appears, as of this writing, that Kylington will resume his role on the second defence pairing with Chris Tanev.
This feels like a good time to formally thank the hockey gods. The Calgary Flames have been extremely fortunate this season where injury is concerned. According to mangameslost.com, the Flames have lost a mere 60 man-games to injury this year. This is the least lost in the league. Contrast that to the cellar dwellers in Montreal and Buffalo, who have lost 506 and 410 man-games respectively, and it’s easy to conclude that staying healthy has been a large part of the Flames success.
Fingers crossed that the trend continues.
According to WynnBET, the Calgary Flames are 1.5-point favourites at the XCel Energy Center. Interestingly, the Wild are favoured to cover the 1.5 goals at 1.41 odds where the Flames are 3.00 to beat the spread. The Flames have 1.80 moneyline odds, while the Wild are the home ‘dogs at a whopping 2.05. The total for the game is set at an over/under of 6.5 with the Under being slightly favoured at 1.86.
Good luck, Flames!