In a potential playoff preview, the Calgary Flames visited Tennessee to face off against the Nashville Predators. In their previous two games, Calgary lost in extra time, the first in overtime, the second in a shootout. As if it was destiny, the two teams found a way to get their third and final regular season matchup into overtime once again.
The first period was both eventful and uneventful. The pace of the game was completely thrown off as the two teams both bought into the playoff preview mantra. With a plethora of penalties doled out to both teams, the game had no flow for either team.
However, mixed into the various power plays, Dillon Dube scored on a snipe to remain red-hot, picking up his seventh goal in as many games. His goal would be the only goal of the period, as chaos took over instead.
There were two fights to close the first period as Erik Gudbranson dropped the mitts with Tanner Jeannot, and then Milan Lucic danced with Mark Borowiecki.
The playoff intensity was in full swing.
The whistles didn’t stop in the second as more penalties were called for both teams and further chaos ensued. By the end of the game, less than 39 minutes were played at 5v5.
Before the midpoint of the second period, Nashville potted two goals to go ahead by one. Roman Josi and Matt Duchene scored their 22nd and 42nd goals of the season, respectively.
However, with under seven minutes left, Dube scored yet again to tie the game up again. The goal was actually scored at 4v4 on an incredible individual effort. Dube carried the puck through the neutral zone and whipped a wicked shot past Juuse Saros.
The game went into the third tied and the chances of another overtime game seemed well within reach.
However, just 30 seconds into the third, the Predators restored their lead with a power play goal from Filip Forsberg. But that lead was short-lived as Noah Hanifin answered back less than two minutes later. His shot was taken off of a faceoff win from Milan Lucic and the puck found its way into the net after Hanifin took his shot from the blue line.
With just under ten minutes remaining, the Predators went up by one again—Forsberg scoring his second of the game on the power play. A fluke injury to Saros sent him to the locker room and former Flame David Rittich took the reins.
The Flames clawed and eventually had to pull Daniel Vladar for the extra attacker. A shot off the post with seconds to go seemed to mark the end of the game for Calgary, but a last-ditch effort turned into a buzzer-beating goal.
Johnny Gaudreau initially passed to Hanifin for a one-timer but the shot was blocked. Hanifin retrieved the puck from the corner and set the puck towards the net with less than two seconds remaining. The puck was corralled by Matthew Tkachuk, quickly stickhandling behind the goal line before slamming the puck into the smallest of gaps left open by Rittich.
The six Flames on the ice celebrated the goal with confidence, and video review confirmed the puck went into the net with 0.1 seconds left on the clock.
Death, taxes, and a Flames/Predators game requiring extra time to solve.
The Flames were mostly in control with puck possession in overtime, and just after a few straight Grade-A chances that Rittich saved, Elias Lindholm took a shot that snuck under Rittich’s arm and trickled past the goal line in slow motion.
Comeback complete. Flames win. 5–4, final score. Data visualisations from the game are below!
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