Goalies Fueling 1st-Place Flames

On Tuesday, Calgary defeated Chicago 5-2, a fourth consecutive victory good for first place in the Pacific. 

The Flames have found themselves tied for the most points in the NHL and atop the Western Conference, thanks to some offensive firepower — and the hottest goaltending tandem in the league. 

Andrew Mangiapane’s 15 goals (T-2nd in NHL) and Johnny Gaudreau’s 23 points (T-4th) lead the way offensively, but shot-stoppers Jacob Markstrom and Dan Vladar are the difference-makers.

  • The pair have combined for seven shutouts, the most by a team through 20 games since the NHL began allowing offensive forward passes in 1929. 
  • Markstrom is 8-3-4 with a 9.40 save percentage (3rd NHL), 1.73 goals-against (4th), and five shutouts (1st). 
  • His backup, Vladar, is 5-5-4 with a .946 save percentage (2nd) and 1.57 GAA (2nd).
  • Calgary is sixth in scoring (3.40) but leads the NHL in goals allowed per game (1.90) and goal differential (+30).

The pair’s combined $6.75 million salary cap hit — $6 million of which belongs to Markstrom — ranks 16th in the NHL among goaltending duos.

It’s the fifth time in franchise history the Flames have led their conference at their 20-game mark.

But despite the scorching start, oddsmakers only have Calgary T-12th (+3,000*) to win its first Stanley Cup since 1989.