St. Louis Blues hand Calgary Flames 5th-straight loss on Friday night

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Jordan Kyrou scored twice on Friday as the St. Louis Blues made it three wins in a row with a 5-2 victory over the Calgary Flames.

Ivan Barbashev and Pavel Buchnevich had two-point games for St. Louis (15-15-1) with a goal and assist each. Brandon Saad also scored.

Connor Mackey scored both goals for Calgary (13-12-6), which is winless in its last five (0-2-3) and received boos from the home crowd as the final buzzer went. Dillon Dube and Elias Lindholm each had two assists.

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Thomas Greiss made 40 saves to win his fourth game in his last five starts for the Blues. He’s 4-4-0 on the season.

At the other end, Jacob Markstrom had 18 stops. His record falls to 8-8-4.

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Calgary Flames goalie Jacob Markstrom, makes a save against St. Louis Blues’ Robert Thomas during first period NHL hockey action in Calgary, Friday, Dec. 16, 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Larry MacDougal

Tied 1-1 after 20 minutes, St. Louis took its second lead at 3:08 of the second on the power play.

Just seconds after Dube and Andrew Mangiapane failed to get a shot on goal during a dangerous two-on-one rush, back up the ice came St. Louis with a three-way passing sequence capped off by Kyrou, who snapped a shot over Markstrom’s shoulder for his 12th goal of the season.

Still 2-1 entering the third, St. Louis took a two-goal lead at 3:46 when a lapse in defensive coverage gave Buchnevich an unimpeded path to the net and he fired a shot inside the goalpost.

The Flames briefly got back into the game when Mackey scored his second of the night at 7:40, beating Greiss over his glove after being set up by Dube.

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St. Louis restored its two-goal advantage just 78 seconds later thanks to a bad turnover by Mackey, who flung the puck up the middle from behind his net where it was intercepted by Saad, who took advantage, scoring his seventh of the season.

A minute later, it was Kyrou again, this time his shot deflecting in off the skate of Flames defenceman Mackenzie Weegar.

The goal was Kyrou’s team-leading 13th of the year.

A key moment in the game came in the second period with the Blues up 2-1. Three straight St. Louis penalties put the Flames on the power play for nearly six continuous minutes — including a 22-second two-man advantage — but against the league’s worst penalty kill, Calgary was unable to generate any dangerous chances.

Not only is St. Louis’ penalty kill the worst in the league, entering the game at 67.1 per cent, it would go down as the worst in NHL history if they end the season that way. The 1979-80 L.A. Kings own the all-time worst PK at 68.2 per cent.

The Flames were 0-for-3 with the man advantage Friday, while the Blues went 1-for-2.

St. Louis opened up the scoring 4:07 into the game, capitalizing on a turnover in the offensive zone by Elias Lindholm that led to a 2-on-1 with Robert Thomas and Barbashev, who buried the return pass for just his second goal in his last 16 games.

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Calgary tied it 1-1 at 16:01 of the first when Dube’s shot deflected in off Mackey.

The assist gives Dube nine points (two goals, seven assists) in his last 10 games, which tops the team.

Dube was on a new line for the game with Darryl Sutter flip-flopping his top-six left wingers. Dube joined Lindholm and Tyler Toffoli and Jonathan Huberdeau dropped down to play alongside Nazem Kadri and Mangiapane.

The Flames continue to struggle head to head against St. Louis, which is 7-1-0 in their last eight meetings. The Blues have enjoyed their visits to southern Alberta, winning five of their last six games in Calgary.

Mackey’s two goals were the second and third of his career but first in front of a crowd as his only other came in the final game of the 2020-21 season in an empty Saddledome, due to COVID restrictions. Connor’s dad, Dave, spent his final three NHL seasons from 1991 to 1994 with the Blues.

The Flames begin a four-game California road trip on Sunday with the first of two consecutive games against the San Jose Sharks.

Click to play video: 'Hockey community gives British grandmother full Calgary Flames experience'
Hockey community gives British grandmother full Calgary Flames experience

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