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Flames rally in third period against Preds to tie game and then win in shootout in Nashville


Just call them the comeback kids.

The Flames rallied from a two-goal deficit in the third period to tie the game and then win in a shootout, dumping the Predators 3-2 in Nashville Tuesday night.

Matthew Tkachuk and Micheal Ferland scored in regulation for the Flames in the final 20 minutes. Tkachuk notched the shootout winner, while Sean Monahan also scored in the elimination frame.

"Well, after a couple of tough games at home, this is exactly what you need right now," Tkachuk said. "I mean, this is good vibes. This is everybody feeling confident, a great team win, great goaltending, and a comeback."

Mike Smith collected the 200th win of his NHL career, stopping 28 of 30 shots. He also stopped two of three in the shootout.

"Yeah, it's a growth game for sure," coach Glen Gulutzan said. "Because you're playing against a really good hockey club. I thought the atmosphere in the building was more intense than most of the regular-season games I think we've played so far. It had some real good energy. And to come back from behind against a really good hockey club, it's a growth game for our group."

Pekka Rinne, meanwhile, stopped 30 of 32 shots, thwarting the visitors for much of the night, until they were able to break through in the third period.

Filip Forsberg and Roman Josi both scored first-period powerplay goals to give the Predators the early lead, and Forsberg also had a shootout goal.

Recent call-up Mark Jankowski, playing in just his second NHL game, went to the box for a tripping call on Scott Hartnell in the Flames' end. 

While the Flames had killed 19 straight penalties on the road coming into this game, Forsberg snapped that streak with a rebound goal over Smith to get the Predators on the board.

"Obviously the penalties and that, not the way I wanted it to go in my second shift, but I think the guys really rallied around it," Jankowski said.

Josi gave them a two-goal lead while Matt Stajan was sitting in the box for interference, firing a rocket from the top of the faceoff circle, high far-side and in.

The Flames had four powerplay chances of their own, and despite some close looks throughout, were unable to capitalize.

No matter, though, as Tkachuk got the Flames on the board eventually, outmuscling the Predators in their own zone to end Rinne's shutout bid and make it a one-goal game.

Video: Tkachuk talks about big win that came at perfect time

"He thrives in the moment," Gulutzan said of Tkachuk. "Loves it. He's competitive, I've said that a lot. He likes this kind of atmosphere. The bigger the game, it seems to me, the more he stands up. I thought a lot of guys did that tonight, but tonight he got the important ones for us.

Just 1:20 later Ferland tied the game. He took a perfect pass from Johnny Gaudreau to come in on Rinne, and went forehand, backhand and roofed it over his glove.

"Yeah, that was a huge character win," Ferland said. "We came back after (the) first period from being down 2-0, we thought we'd just stick with it and keep battling and battling. We just kept putting pucks on net and we battled our way back."

Overtime had a number of heart-stopping moments, but solved nothing. 

Smith kicked off the shootout by poke-checking Kevin Fiala, and Monahan got the Flames on the board first with a quick shot past Rinne.

Forsberg evened the shootout by beating Smith glove-side, while Kris Versteeg was stopped by Rinne.

Viktor Arvidsson was unable to beat Smith, setting the stage for Tkachuk to win the game he started the comeback on - and he did, beating Rinne high and glove side.

"(Jordan Sigalet) had that mapped out before, our goalie coach," Gulutzan said of his shooters. "I'd like to take credit for it, but I can't. We've seen our guys do these types of things in practice and so forth, and Siggy has a good handle on it with our guys. I thought Mony's shot and Chucky's shot were great."

Though he didn't get on the scoreboard, Sam Bennett was one of the more noticeable Flames. Playing on the left wing, he was one of the bigger scoring threats on the night, with three shots on net and some very dangerous scoring chances, including leading a rush that led to a review to determine whether the puck had crossed the goal-line.


This was the 696th game of Troy Brouwer's career. Four to go until 700 … Gaudreau has 12 points this season, which not only leads the Flames, but makes him one of the NHL's top scorers.


It's a quick turnaround for the Flames, as they jet off to St. Louis to take on the Blues at 6 p.m. MT Wednesday. The team returns to Calgary to host the Dallas Stars on Friday at 7 p.m. MT, and the Washington Capitals on Sunday at 7 p.m. MT to close out October.


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