|@ Flames (20-20-2)||4||1||1||6|
In just under a minute, Sam Bennett had scored for the Flames to put them in the lead. Usually, this is a feat that would be achieved by the Panthers, but clearly not tonight. Really, the Panthers looked tired. The Flames were walking all over them to the point that Johnny Gaudreau was able to score the second goal of the game on just three shots. Just like that, the Panthers were at a two goal disadvantage. To make matters worse, just after that second goal was scored, Erik Gudbranson was penalized for holding and the Panthers went on the penalty kill. The penalty was killed but the Panthers still could not gain any momentum. It seemed like it was just going to be one of those games. With 7:59 left in the period, Sam Bennett scored his second of the game and things really did not look good for the Cats. Really, really not good. Sam Bennett scored his third goal of the game and had a hat trick in the first. This is unbelievable. Expect to see Al Montoya in the second period. With 17 seconds left in the period, Jussi Jokinen was sent to the sin bin for holding (sigh). At the end of the period, the Flames led the Panthers 4-0 and also led in shots on goal 15-5. There’s not much to be said about the Panthers’ gameplay this period. If they want even the slightest chance of winning, they will have to change every aspect of their gameplay this period. Here’s to hoping they can pull something together in the next two periods.
Just as expected, Al Montoya started the second period in net. The Flames started off the period on fire but the Jagr-Huberdeau-Barkov line were able to generate a bit of offense after that. With some more solid goaltending, the Panthers were able to even out the play but could not score. Just when the Panthers started to look better, Mason Raymond scored to widen the Flames’ lead to five. The Panthers finally got a power play opportunity when Mikael Backlund tripped Alex Petrovic but they were not able to capitalize on the advantage. Just like the fans, the Cats were clearly tired. At the end of the period, the Panthers were down 5-0 and also trailed monumentally in shots on goal 25-9. This game seems to be beyond saving, but hopefully the Panthers can at least score one goal in the third. That will make the sting a little less severe.
The Panthers got another power play early on in the third when Mason Raymond was penalized on a hooking call. Of course, the penalty was killed. The Flames were on fire, no pun intended, and there was no stopping them. There is no point in explaining the domination in any more detail than that. The Panthers turned their game on with three minutes left and by that time, it was too late. Not to mention the fact that Sam Bennett scored his fourth goal of the game with less than a minute left in the game. The Panthers were shut out 6-0 tonight and we can all forget about it now. Let’s just hope that this never happens to them again.
*Al Montoya was actually playing well, saving every shot but one to save even further embarrassment, but for emphasis and comedic effect, he will not be included in the “Who’s Hot?” section of this recap.
Sam Bennett and Jonas Hiller of the Calgary Flames.
The Panthers will finish off their road trip against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Sunday, January 17th at 5:00 pm ET. Stay tuned for a COTP preview and recap of that game.