After a disappointing (possibly heartbreaking) overtime loss to the Philadelphia Flyers the night before, the Seattle Kraken hosted the division-leading Calgary Flames, Thursday evening. Following the postponement of four games over the Christmas holiday, the Kraken jumped right back into action with game two of a three-games-in-four-days part of their schedule.
As teams recover from COVID-19 decimating their rosters, both the Kraken and Flames iced rosters that looked relatively similar to their normal lineups. Seattle was missing Haydn Fleury, Riley Sheahan, and Jaden Schwartz, while Calgary was only missing Michael Stone and Adam Ruzicka.
There was no delay to the action, as the teams combined for 25 shots in the first period, but goaltenders Chris Driedger and Jakob Markstrom held the scoring to one goal apiece. Former Flames Captain Mark Giordano (#RevengeEffects) bit his former team and opened the scoring just under six minutes into the game, but Flames star forward Johnny Gaudreau tied the game four minutes later. As the teams headed into the first intermission, the Flames led in shots 15–10.
rekindling an old flame. 😏 pic.twitter.com/JrSWk8Oe9d
— Seattle Kraken (@SeattleKraken) December 31, 2021
Seattle’s Calle Jarnkrok continued his hot play scoring his third goal of the season just 0:09 into the second period, on the power play, but Gaudreau got his second goal of the game (also on the power play) four minutes later. Calgary dominated the second period in shots 14–7, partly due to their three power plays.
Flames veteran forward Milan Lucic gave Calgary their first lead of the game with five minutes remaining in the second period, which also led into the second intermission.
Scoring opened up in the third period with the two Pacific Division teams battling for the win. Yanni Gourde tied the game five minutes into the third period, which held until the final 5 minutes of regulation. Three goals in 0:43 from Andrew Mangiapane, Jared McCann, and Matthew Tkachuk set up a 5–4 score heading into the final moments of the game.
Kraken Head Coach Dave Hakstol pulled his goaltender in the closing moments of the game in an attempt to send the game to overtime, but Calgary’s Noah Hanifin closed out those hopes, with an empty-net goal in the final 0:20 of play. Hakstol’s team was only able to manage five third period shots on goal as Calgary led overall 40–22, and won the game 6–4.
⚓ Driedger definitely wants a few of those flames goals back. Gaudreau’s second caught him way too far into his own net, and he was late getting across on the Tkachuk winner. I cannot fault him for over persuing Zadorov on Gaudreau’s first goal because no one in the building thought he was passing that puck.
⚓ The Kraken power play did break through in the second period but the penalty kill (which dropped to 22nd overall) gave up two on the night.
⚓ Only the line of Jordan Eberle (52% Corsi), Morgan Geekie (58% Corsi), and Jared McCann (54% Corsi) were above water in 5-on-5 possession. The line of Kole Lind, Max McCormick, and Alexander True were crushed by the Flames and only played 6:10 at even strength.
⚓ Calgary controlled most of the play and it showed in the final score
🔱 5-on-5 Corsi (total shot attempts) 59% – 41%
🔱 5-on-5 Fenwick (Unblocked shot attempts) 61% – 39%
🔱 5-on-5 High Danger Chances For 50% – 50%
🔱 5-on-5 Expected Goals For 56% – 44%
🔱 Faceoff Percentage 60% – 40%
⚓ The Kraken have little time to lick their wounds, as they host the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday, New Years Day. The puck drop is scheduled for 7 p.m. PDT.