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Markstrom makes 32 saves, Flames shut out Canucks

Goalie was playing first game against former team; Calgary scores three on power play

by Aaron Vickers / NHL.com Independent Correspondent

Markstrom's 32-save shutout

VAN@CGY: Markstrom blanks Canucks with 32 saves

In his first game against his former team, Jacob Markstrom turns in in a 32-save shutout, spurring the Flames to a 3-2 win against the Canucks

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CALGARY -- Jacob Markstrom made 32 saves to help the Calgary Flames to a 3-0 win against the Vancouver Canucks at Scotiabank Saddledome on Saturday.

The shutout is Markstrom's sixth in the NHL and comes in his first game against his former team. He signed a six-year, $36 million contract with the Flames on Oct. 9 after playing the previous seven seasons with the Canucks.

"First home game for me and unfortunately there's no fans in the stands, but hopefully a lot people were watching and enjoyed the victory," Markstrom said. "Special playing my old team, too. First game back and we've got nine more games against them. Quick turnaround, we've got another game against these guys, so we've got to enjoy this one, and then prepare for Monday and see what we can do better in a couple days."

Video: Markstrom earns Saturday's Pepsi Zero Sugar Shutout

Matthew Tkachuk had a goal and an assist for the Flames (1-0-1), who scored all three goals on the power play.

Braden Holtby made 32 saves for the Canucks (1-2-0).

"We have to play like a desperate hockey team out there," Canucks captain Bo Horvat said. "It's as close to the playoffs as you're going to get, playing these mini-series. It's going to be like that all year and we have to be ready to respond here Monday night. You play every single game against a team in your division. All these points are important, and we've got to be ready to go here Monday night."

Sean Monahan put Calgary ahead 1-0 at 8:31 of the first period, finishing a tic-tac-toe passing play with Elias Lindholm and Tkachuk.

"You want to get it going early," Monahan said. "Right now, special teams are huge this early in the season; they can win you games and lose you games. Tonight, our PK was great (4-for-4) and the power play got three, and we won the game."

Dillon Dube scored on a one-timer over Holtby's shoulder after receiving a no-look backhand pass from Andrew Mangiapane to make it 2-0 at 16:12 of the second period.

"I was ready for it to come, but [Mangiapane] had an opportunity to shoot, faked him out and I got a good look at it," Dube said. "It was nice to connect on that one and special teams were big for us today. I wanted it. [Mangiapane] made a great behind-the-back pass, right in my wheelhouse."

Video: VAN@CGY: Dube doubles the lead on power play

Tkachuk extended the lead to 3-0 at 15:16 of the third period on a rebound at the left post.

"I think [the penalty kill] is one of those things we got to work on in practice and watch some film to make sure that we know exactly what we're doing out there," Holtby said. "Two are ones I can definitely stop. It's more just focusing on moving forward and being better."

Markstrom preserved the shutout with a blocker save on Canucks forward Nils Hoglander from the slot with 1:20 remaining.

"He played really well tonight," Horvat said. "I'm not going to say he didn't. He was good again tonight. He stole games like that for us in the previous years. You know how he can be. That's the thing. We have to get in his eyes and create havoc in front of the net, and we didn't do that in front of him tonight."

NOTES: Canucks defenseman Alexander Edler left at 9:08 of the third period with an apparent lower-body injury and did not return. There was no update postgame. … Flames defenseman Christopher Tanev, who played his first 10 NHL seasons with the Canucks, and forward Josh Leivo, who spent the previous two seasons in Vancouver, played against their former team for the first time since signing with the Flames in the offseason. … Vancouver defenseman Travis Hamonic, who spent the previous three seasons in Calgary, played against the Flames for the first time since signing with the Canucks on Tuesday. 

Video: Flames ride hot power play, Markstrom to 3-0 win

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