Mark Giordano collected one goal and one assist and goaltender Jacob Markstrom provided a stellar 33-save performance against his former team to lead the visiting Calgary Flames to a 3-1 victory over the slumping Vancouver Canucks on Thursday night.
Andrew Mangiapane and Johnny Gaudreau also scored for Calgary, which won the first of four consecutive meetings between the clubs. The Flames have won all three clashes so far this season, with the next one scheduled for Saturday night.
The free-falling Canucks have lost six straight games, all in regulation.
Markstrom, signed by Calgary via free agency from the Canucks, was a major factor in helping his team win a third straight game for the first time this season, holding strong while his team was outplayed for much of the game.
The Canucks held a 10-2 edge in shots over the first 10 minutes, but Giordano opened the scoring with 85 seconds remaining in the first period. Just as a power play expired, the Flames captain’s long point shot ricocheted off the skate of Canucks defender Jordie Benn and into the net for his second goal of the season.
To their credit, the hosts kept momentum and were rewarded when Brock Boeser replied to make it a 1-1 game. Boeser, sprung for a breakaway by Elias Pettersson, was denied on his first attempt, but jammed home the loose puck at 6:31 of the second period for his 10th goal of the season.
Mangiapane netted the eventual game winner with another goal right after a power play expired. Mangiapane’s slapper from the top of the right circle banked off both Benn and Nate Schmidt before finding the twine for his fourth goal of the season with 5:29 remaining in the second period.
Right after the Canucks failed to convert their fourth power play, Gaudreau rounded out the scoring by converting a top-shelf shot at 5:58 of the third period for his eighth goal of the season.
Thatcher Demko stopped 23 shots for the Canucks, whose loss was compounded with forward Justin Bailey leaving the game early in the second period favoring his shoulder following a hard hit from Milan Lucic.
–Field Level Media