Calgary Flames

A deeper look into Games 51 to 60 from the Calgary Flames 2022-23 season

The Calgary Flames just finished Game 60 against the Colorado Avalanche, which resulted in a 4-1 loss. So, the Flames now have an overall record of 27-21-11. With that record, they currently sit outside a playoff spot by both points and points percentage.

The Flames had an overall record of 3-4-3 in this ten game segment, which ranks among the worst performances from the Flames this season. Only Games 9-16 and Games 25-32 have similarly worse records. With only 22 games left in the regular season, things are starting to become bleak. Putting together a 3-4-3 record in your last ten games certainly doesn’t help your playoff chances:

Flames game segments

Games 1–85–3–0
Games 9–162–4–2
Games 17–244–3–1
Games 25–323–2–3
Games 33–405–2–1
Games 41–50*5–3–2
Games 51-60*3-4-3
*denotes 10 game segment

As of today, the Flames are closer to entering the Connor Bedard lottery than they are to make the playoffs. With the NHL Trade Deadline on Friday, I wonder which direction General Manager Brad Treliving would take. It seems like the majority of the fanbase is trending towards wanting to sell, given the Flames poor performance over the last while.

Game Summaries

Note: All CF%, SCF%, HDCF%, and xGF% data seen in the graphics below is courtesy of Ice times are courtesy of

Game 51 (Calgary @ New York Rangers)

The Flames returned from All Star break with a game against the Rangers. It was a feisty battle, with Rangers defenceman Jacob Trouba laying multiple hits on Flames forwards. Another game where the Flames win the CF% category, but get caved everywhere else. Rinse and repeat. Mangiapane – Backlund – Coleman was the best line by far, once again. This is a trend that seems to continue game after game, as they are one of, if not the best lines in the NHL right now.

Game 52 (Calgary @ Detroit)

The next game features the Flames taking on the surging Red Wings. Word before the game was that Rasmus Andersson was out after he was hit by a vehicle in Detroit. Luckily, he returns later in this segment! The Flames 4th line and 3rd pairing got massively caved in tonight. Ice times were cut as a result. Another game where the Flames outshoot and out chanced the opposition, but lost again.

Game 53 (Calgary @ Buffalo)

The Flames were due for a game where everything went their way. Goals, goals, goals! Markstrom recovered well after a rough 1st period. Strong games from the 2nd line, and top four. Congrats to Jakob Pelletier on his first NHL Goal!

Game 54 (Calgary @ Ottawa)

The Flames followed up their great performance in Buffalo with a poor effort against the Senators. There was just no consistency in the Flames game, besides the parts of the game they are struggling in. Another game where they outshot and out chanced the opponent, but ended up losing. Top pair and third line were great. Markstrom struggled.

Game 55 (Detroit @ Calgary)

Great to see Rasmus Andersson back in the lineup, after he was sidelined before Game 52. A tough loss against the Red Wings, where Vladar struggled mightily. This might have been the worst goaltending performance of the entire season. The top line and top pairing also struggled. Great games from the second line and second pairing.

Game 56 (New York Rangers @ Calgary)

Jacob Markstrom had himself an above average game, and the Flames squeaked by with a win against a tired Rangers team. The 1st line played incredible in the small minutes they’ve played together. The 3rd line and 2nd pairing were great yet again.

Game 57 (Philadelphia @ Calgary)

This was a tough loss against the Flyers, as goaltending struggled yet again. Michael Stone came out with an injury, and Dennis Gilbert came in to replace him. The third pairing and top line also struggled. Another game where the Backlund line and Weegar-Tanev pairing were the best line/pairing. Rinse and repeat.

Game 58 (Calgary @ Arizona)

The Flames played a strong game, and persevered through some rough moments in the second period. The Backlund line and Weegar-Tanev pair were the best lines, again. Really strong game from the 4th line, we love Walker Duehr.

Game 59 (Calgary @ Vegas)

Weegar-Tanev pairing was fantastic, like usual. Definitely the best players on the ice for the Flames. The fourth line struggled, as did the top pairing. Vladar also had a rough game. Another blown lead from the Flames where they left points on the table. With the chances at playoffs decreasing every day, losing this point against Vegas could really hurt.

Game 60 (Calgary @ Colorado)

A great game from the Backlund line, which is usual these days. Hanifin-Andersson and Zadorov-Gilbert pairings were very solid. Markstrom struggled, particularly at the beginning of the game. Losing this hard to a team on a back-to-back was tough, but Colorado are the reigning cup champs for a reason.

Forward Lines Summarized (5v5 SVA)

Note: bolded lines are the lines that are currently in use, or were used in the last game played

Mangiapane – Backlund – Coleman298:0168.83%68.75%69.30%73.62%
Dube – Lindholm – Toffoli281:4658.65%48.28%53.41%43.93%
Mangiapane – Kadri – Dube222:4652.52%46.70%47.09%43.67%
Lucic – Kadri – Huberdeau176:2453.56%52.30%50.67%42.15%
Huberdeau – Lindholm – Toffoli154:5554.34%53.21%51.10%53.60%
Pelletier – Kadri – Huberdeau120:0661.34%58.96%61.36%50.00%
Coleman – Backlund – Lewis83:2759.30%51.22%48.64%39.66%
Ruzicka – Lindholm – Toffoli81:4860.35%66.17%57.71%62.22%
Lucic – Rooney – Ritchie81:1946.65%42.85%43.81%42.35%
Ruzicka – Backlund – Coleman78:3759.89%58.21%57.97%57.83%
Lucic – Lewis – Ritchie56:3156.98%51.39%50.00%55.56%
Huberdeau – Backlund – Coleman54:5155.61%61.94%56.12%64.99%
Ruzicka – Lewis – Ritchie46:3157.59%55.25%50.85%42.17%
Huberdeau – Kadri – Mangiapane40:5148.05%34.75%37.24%26.06%
Lucic – Lewis – Duehr30:4551.52%50.42%50.00%40.00%

Mangiapane – Backlund – Coleman surges to the top of the forward charts, and continues to be an exceptionally good line, pushing above 68% in every statistical category. This line has outscored its opponents 19-5 at 5v5 in those 298 minutes, which is out of this world.

The Dube – Lindholm – Toffoli line improved its CF%, but falls in the xGF% and HDCF% categories. Something to watch out for.

The Pelletier – Kadri – Huberdeau has put together some very solid metrics so far, and Pelletier is definitely a breath of fresh air for the club. They have been unlucky in terms of shooting percentage and PDO so far, so expect this line to get on the scoresheet in the coming games.

Defence Pairs Summarized (5V5 SVA)

Hanifin – Andersson838:3452.25%53.74%51.21%52.14%
Weegar – Tanev576:2360.55%58.61%58.35%56.21%
Zadorov – Stone388:5957.02%51.45%50.68%48.33%
Zadorov – Weegar326:4364.53%55.97%57.26%45.20%
Zadorov – Andersson91:5753.23%48.75%50.33%46.91%
Zadorov – Tanev89:3361.66%65.96%66.08%61.80%
Hanifin – Tanev88:3067.49%71.62%68.03%74.91%
Mackey – Stone58:1957.37%47.50%48.69%51.93%
Weegar – Andersson48:5563.52%69.93%66.54%68.79%
Zadorov – Gilbert45:1656.36%61.65%53.92%58.99%

Hanifin – Andersson has taken a bit of a step back over this ten game segment. We will just chalk that up to Andersson adjusting after returning the lineup. They still haven’t returned to the form they were at last year.

The Weegar – Tanev pairing have improved in all four statistical categories over this last ten game segment. They are one of the best pairs in the league.

Zadorov – Stone also takes a step back over this ten game segment. Michael Stone is now out of the lineup with injury, and he was really struggling prior to.

Any combination of Weegar, Tanev, and Zadorov have played well with each other.

Hanifin – Tanev played really well in the 88 minutes they played together. Same goes with Weegar – Andersson in the 49 minutes they’ve spent together. Those pairs might have to be explored if the Hanifin – Andersson pairing continues to tread water.

Goaltending Summarized (5v5 SVA)

Jacob Markstrom15-15-7-14.330.896%
Dan Vladar12-6-5-3.070.909%

Goaltending has turned into the biggest concern for the Flames. At 5v5, both goaltenders are in the negatives in terms of Goals Saved Above Average. With that -14.33, Markstrom ranks 89th out of 93 goalies who have played at least a game in the NHL this season. Vladar ranks 72nd out of 93. This is a massive fall for one of the best goaltending tandems in the league last year.

It becomes even more concerning when looking at this tweet from Sportsnet Stats:

The Flames have lost 22 out of their 60 games by one goal. Imagine if their goaltending would have made some extra saves at crucial moments? We certainly wouldn’t be talking about this team potentially selling. I’m not saying goaltending has been the only issue for the Flames, but it has definitely popped its head around recently.

Photo by Brett Holmes/Icon Sportswire

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