We have finally concluded the Calgary Flames’ 2022–23 season. It was a season that can be described in many words, such as disappointment, sadness, or confusion. They ended their regular season last night with a feel-good 3–1 victory over the Sharks, ending two points out of a playoff spot (depending on Winnipeg’s last game tonight). Calgary’s season finishes at 38–27–17. We are going to look into games 71 to 82, in which the Flames went 7–3–2:
Game 71 (Calgary @ LA)
The Flames start this segment with one of the worst performances of the season—getting thwomped 8–2 by the Kings. Not a lot of positives for this game. The Flames allowed 4.61 goals above expected.
Game 72 (Calgary @ Anaheim)
The Flames bounce back in a big way over the Ducks. Dan Vladar had a great performance, and everyone played well with the exception of the bottom-six. Really great game from the Mangiapane-Lindholm-Toffoli line.
Game 73 (Vegas @ Calgary)
The top-nine struggled, while the fourth line was quite effective. Walker Duehr has to stay in this lineup. Strong game from the Zadorov-Weegar pairing, and Markstrom played pretty well.
Game 74 (San Jose @ Calgary)
Really strong game from the top line, with Toffoli potting two goals. Good games from the second and third defence pairings as well. Middle-six and first pairing struggled.
Game 75 (LA @ Calgary)
A much needed performance from this Flames team, as they knock off the red hot Kings. Great game from the first and fourth lines, second pairing, and Jacob Markstrom. Gilbert-Stecher was the only area of struggle for the team tonight.
Game 76 (Calgary @ Vancouver)
The first comeback in the third period for the Flames this entire season. They got lucky with the non-penalty call on Pettersson late, but the Flames deserved to win this game based on overall play. Strong games from the top line and second defensive pairing were seen. Markstrom and the third pair struggled, but the team’s top players got the ice time tonight and it led to a win.
Game 77 (Anaheim @ Calgary)
This game ended up being a lot closer than it should have largely due to goaltending. By play, the Flames deserved to win by a wide margin. Goaltending tried their best to not make that happen. The swap with Dube/Mangiapane seemed to work well enough to give them more options in front.
Game 78 (Chicago @ Calgary)
The Huberdeau-Backlund-Coleman line was the lone positive. Completely tragic loss. Markstrom is clearly tired, and struggled again.
Game 79 (Calgary @ Winnipeg)
The Flames beat the team they are chasing, and “live” to see another day. The top-six and top pairing struggled dramatically, but Jacob Markstrom puts up a phenomenal performance, saving 2.58 goals above expected.
Game 80 (Calgary @ Vancouver)
Really strong performances from the Kadri line, and the Hanifin-Tanev pairing. Lindholm line was also good. Lindholm in particular was all over the ice. The fourth line was absolutely abysmal. They were out chanced 2–13 at 5v5.
Game 81 (Nashville @ Calgary)
The Flames were officially eliminated in a shootout loss to the Predators. What a way to lose. The Backlund line was great, as was Jacob Markstrom. The Flames out-chanced the Preds, but were severely beaten in expected goals and high-danger chances. Nick Ritchie in the shootout for the dagger was so funny.
Game 82 (San Jose @ Calgary)
The Flames end their 2022–23 season with a fun performance! Dustin Wolf was fantastic, and Matthew Coronato was part of Calgary’s best forward line. Great game from the third pairing, and a Zadorov hat trick to boot! That was the first hat trick of the Flames 2022–23 season, and funnily enough it occurs in their last game.
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 – Coleman||391:34||65.62%||62.26%||64.89%||66.01%|
|Dube – Lindholm – Toffoli||359:37||57.37%||52.28%||53.73%||46.70%|
|Mangiapane – Kadri – Dube||222:46||52.52%||46.70%||47.09%||43.67%|
|Lucic – Kadri – Huberdeau||176:24||53.56%||52.30%||50.67%||42.15%|
|Huberdeau – Backlund – Coleman||172:01||56.01%||54.51%||57.63%||57.48%|
|Huberdeau – Lindholm – Toffoli||154:55||54.34%||53.21%||51.10%||53.60%|
|Pelletier – Kadri – Huberdeau||150:40||61.56%||59.35%||62.73%||55.17%|
|Lucic – Lewis – Duehr||145:27||55.11%||51.26%||48.74%||52.59%|
|Mangiapane – Lindholm – Toffoli||99:34||58.26%||65.44%||60.07%||62.41%|
|Coleman – Backlund – Lewis||83:27||59.30%||51.22%||48.64%||39.66%|
|Ruzicka – Lindholm – Toffoli||81:48||60.35%||66.17%||57.71%||62.22%|
|Lucic – Rooney – B. Ritchie||81:19||46.65%||42.85%||43.81%||42.35%|
|Ruzicka – Backlund – Coleman||78:37||59.89%||58.21%||57.97%||57.83%|
The Mangiapane – Backlund – Coleman line was one of the best forward lines in the entire NHL this season. They were a model of consistency, and helped this team when other lines weren’t clicking. Because of that, they played the most together, and had the highest CF% SCF%, and HDCF% totals on the squad.
The Ruzicka – Lindholm – Toffoli line actually had the highest xGF% on the team, although they played a smaller sample size.
Pelletier – Kadri – Huberdeau had very strong results, as did the Mangiapane – Lindholm – Toffoli line. Some things to keep in mind for whoever the head coach is next season.
Defence Pairs Summarized (5V5 SVA)
|Hanifin – Andersson||973:22||52.14%||53.46%||51.42%||52.55%|
|Weegar – Tanev||590:43||60.50%||58.27%||58.19%||55.97%|
|Zadorov – Weegar||452:45||64.22%||57.98%||59.65%||50.36%|
|Zadorov – Stone||389:40||57.07%||51.45%||50.80%||48.33%|
|Hanifin – Tanev||315:25||60.51%||66.29%||63.52%||69.06%|
|Weegar – Andersson||279:32||56.69%||55.89%||55.18%||50.95%|
|Zadorov – Stecher||164:47||56.42%||45.74%||50.34%||45.35%|
|Zadorov – Andersson||111:49||58.18%||53.89%||56.22%||50.99%|
The most common pairing was the Hanifin-Andersson by far, with above average results.
Nikita Zadorov wasn’t fantastic next to Stecher or Stone, but was really good with Weegar and Andersson.
Chris Tanev and MacKenzie Weegar deserve a lot of love, and played fantastic wherever they played.
Zadorov – Weegar led the team in CF%, while the Hanifin – Tanev pairing led the team in xGF%, SCF%, and HDCF%.
Goaltending Summarized (5v5 SVA)
The goaltending front can be one of major blame for this Flames season. Jacob Markstrom just wasn’t himself for most of this year, although he did massively improve on his numbers in this final 12-game segment. Vladar was completely fine as a backup goaltender. Wolf came into the last game and played great, so that’s definitely something to keep an eye on for the future.
There are a lot of negatives in this season, such as Jonathan Huberdeau’s downfall, and the play of Jacob Markstrom. But there are some positives too. The Mangiapane – Backlund – Coleman line was a force to be reckoned with, and was greatly appreciated. Tyler Toffoli was a model of consistency, and set career highs. I liked the play of MacKenzie Weegar a lot, and I think he returned to his Florida form in the final quarter of the season. Chris Tanev was a rock on the backend.