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7:30 PM PT8:30 PM MT9:30 PM CT10:30 PM ET3:30 GMT11:30 8:30 PM MST10:30 PM EST7:30 UAE (+1)22:30 ET1:30 BRT, December 7, 2021
SAP Center at San Jose, San Jose, California  Attendance: 10,534

Flames, Sharks both seek rebound performances

Calgary Flames at San Jose Sharks

  1. San Jose is one of two teams to beat the Flames by three goals this season (also Edmonton), getting a 4-1 win in Calgary on November 9. Calgary has won two of its last three in San Jose (2-1-0), but had lost each of the five prior to that (0-4-1).
  2. The Flames fell to the Golden Knights, 3-2, in Las Vegas on Sunday, just their second regulation loss in their last 12 games (8-2-2). They fell to 1-5-4 this season when scoring two or fewer goals, compared to 14-0-1 when scoring at least three.
  3. With his goal on Sunday, Andrew Mangiapane became the fourth player in the last 25 years with 16 goals through his first 16 road games of a season, joining Patrik Laine and Alex Ovechkin in 2018-19 and Thomas Vanek in 2008-09. He has one goal in nine home games this year.
  4. The Sharks lost to the Blue Jackets, 6-4, in Columbus on Sunday, finishing their five-game road trip with back-to-back losses after starting with three straight wins. They allowed three third-period goals on Sunday after allowing two total across their previous seven games.
  5. Nick Bonino, playing in his first season with the team that drafted him in the sixth round in 2007, scored his fourth goal in his last seven games on Sunday. He had zero goals in his first 18 games this year. He has five goals and one assist in 27 career games against the Flames.
  6. All six goals allowed by the Sharks on Sunday came at even strength -- San Jose's penalty kill has an 87.3 percent success rate this season, third best in the NHL. The Flames are right behind the Sharks at 87.0.

A big part of the Calgary Flames' success this season has been the way they've bolted out of the gates. The inability to gain a quick start has been noticeable of late and caught up to them in Sunday's 3-2 loss to the Vegas Golden Knights.

Therefore, as the Flames head into Tuesday's road clash with the San Jose Sharks, watch for more determination to avoid having to chase the opposition for most of the game.

The Flames have surrendered the first goal in three consecutive games, an eye-opening trend for a club that has opened the scoring in 18 of its 25 games.

"We just weren't as sharp for the whole 60 minutes and they took it to us pretty good, especially the first two periods," forward Matthew Tkachuk said. "We played a little bit better once it was a little easier and we were down, but that can't happen. We have to be ready from the start and play that full 60 that we've been pretty good at this year."

The defeat is hardly the end of the world for a Calgary club that leads the Pacific Division and is tied with the Minnesota Wild for top spot in the Western Conference. The loss snapped Calgary's three-game winning streak and 6-0-2 road run, but it's still a team with only two regulation-time losses in its last 12 games (8-2-2).

As much as the Flames don't want to let one defeat become the start of a losing skid, they have to keep some perspective.

"Obviously we didn't win and that's the most important thing, but we also didn't roll over and die, you know what I mean?" defenseman Chris Tanev said.

The Sharks are also looking to return to the win column. Thanks to Sunday's 6-4 road loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets, San Jose ended a five-game road swing with two losses after winning the first three games of the trip.

"It's the most frustrating game of the year for me," coach Bob Boughner said. "We sort of went brain dead. I know guys are a bit tired, it's the end of a trip, but (Columbus) played (Saturday) night and we didn't."

San Jose, which outshot the Blue Jackets 19-9 in the first period, took a 2-1 lead 21 seconds into the second period before falling apart. The Sharks blew a pair of leads before the end of the second and then saw the Blue Jackets roll to victory.

On the positive, defenseman Brent Burns snapped an 11-game point drought, while forward Nick Bonino has scored four goals in the last seven games after being skunked in the season's first 18 clashes and defensemen Erik Karlsson has scored three goals in four games.

However, none of that took away the sting of wasting the chance to end the road trip on a high.

"It could have been a great trip. We still got six points, but I think we should have had eight," forward Tomas Hertl said.

The Sharks, who are in the thick of the playoff chase -- a big improvement from the last couple of seasons -- are staring at a golden opportunity. The Calgary clash is the start of a seven-game homestand that takes them all the way to the Christmas break.

"We've got to move on," Karlsson said. "We play again on Tuesday against a good team."

--Field Level Media

Updated December 6, 2021

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