Flames look for new equipment and try to land in Dallas | Radio WGN 720


The Calgary Flames have every right to feel positive vibes after a comeback victory and on Friday night they can clinch their Western Conference Opening Round series against the Stars by winning Game 6 in Dallas.

The Flames scored three third period goals in Game 5 on Wednesday, rallying 1-0 for a 3-1 victory at home.

But with the Flames up 3-2 in the best-of-seven series, Calgary coach Darryl Sutter delivered a very pointed message.

“(Winning) Game 3 is much harder than winning Game 2, and a lot of our players have never won Game 3,” Sutter said. “And (winning) Game 4 will be much more difficult than Game 3.”

As Pacific Division champions, the Flames were deserved favorites going into the series, but they were given all they can handle by a Stars team that didn’t earn a spot until they claim a wildcard spot with one regular season game remaining.

Maybe – and it’s a big maybe – the Flames have finally cracked the code to solve Stars goaltender Jake Oettinger (who has a stellar 1.63 goals-against-average and save percentage .956 in the series) and/or the Stars lacked all the magic that kept them in a series in which they were continuously outplayed.

More likely, however, the Flames need to find another gear to reach the second round.

“Building on that third period – playing our game, playing with confidence and not deviating from our system,” Flames forward Andrew Mangiapane said when asked what his team needed to do in Dallas. “We are a good team when all the lines go, the three pairs (defensive). Just keep grinding them and stick to the system.

The Stars have certainly had their troubles in the series, despite having two wins. Calgary holds a 182-127 advantage in shooting and, by all stats put forward, was the better team. In the last two games – two Calgary wins – the Flames were the better team in the third period and sparked close matchups.

In the third period of Game 5, Dallas had just five shots on goal Wednesday night, but had a golden chance with a late power play when the score was still 2-1. They couldn’t even get a single puck on the net during the power play.

“They took it to another level, and we didn’t,” Stars coach Rick Bowness said. “We didn’t handle the situation very well. We stayed with them for two periods, obviously. They only got stronger in the third period and we didn’t manage the puck well to give us the opportunity to spend time in their zone.

Still, the Stars know that with a big push in Big D, they can push the series back in Calgary for a deciding Game 7 on Sunday.

“We’ve always been a good home team this year,” said forward Jason Robertson. “It’s unfortunate that we lost the game (on Wednesday) in the third period, but there are positives to build on and we will have to use them for the next game.”

One of those bright spots would be Robertson’s goal in the loss, his first of the playoffs after a career-high 41 goals in the regular season.

“At this point in the year, I’m just excited that we’re scoring goals,” Robertson said. “I want to produce attack, and it’s good when I can do that, but in the end it wasn’t enough. There is nothing to be happy about. »

–Field level media


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