Pardon the pun, but Elias Lindholm is red hot right now.
And sure, an eight-game goal scoring streak is nice, but how about a whole month of domination?
Because the Calgary Flames centre is well on his way.
Lindholm is 75% of the way to turning in the National Hockey League’s most impressive performance in February, outpacing each of the other 676 players to suit up in the past 21 days of the regular season.
Lindholm leads the lead in almost every conceivable offensive category in the month of February, leading in goals (9), points (15), even-strength goals (8), even-strength points (14), and game-winning goals (3).
“He’s been playing really well for us through this winning streak we’ve had so definitely deserves it,” said Gaudreau, whose pivot has been Calgary’s biggest night-in, night-out contributor to tying a franchise-best 10-game winning streak with the chance to move into sole possession on the mark this Thursday.
⭐ @lindholmelias ranked second in the NHL with 4-4—8 last week, collecting multiple points in all three appearances. He has scored in seven straight games overall, one shy of the longest goal streak in @NHLFlames history.#NHLStats: https://t.co/SXVeQJzLM2 pic.twitter.com/bd26jIZwgO
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) February 21, 2022
“I feel like at the beginning the year, he scored every single game, too. So you know, when he finds his groove, he’s won a couple of games in a row. You know he’s feeling it, he’s playing well at both ends of the ice and he’s got a great shot, a smart player.”
Not only does Lindholm hold a share of the NHL’s longest goal scoring streak this season — splitting honours with Mitch Marner of the Toronto Maple Leafs — it also locks him into the record books, matching runs by Gary Roberts (January 28 to February 16, 1993) and Kent Nilsson (November 12 to 29, 1983).
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) February 22, 2022
“He’s been scoring goals but he’s been, defensively, one of the best players that I’ve ever seen or played with,” goalie Jacob Markstrom was quick to point out last week. “It’s a pleasure to be out there watching him and be out there on the ice with him and I’m happy I’m on the same team and not playing against him.”
He’s got a solid sense of timing, too.
Scoring three straight game-winners locks him with Sean Monahan, in 2017-18, and Al MacInnis, in 1993-94, for the longest game-winning goal streak in franchise history.
Lindholm picked up his latest in an eventual 3-1 win against the Winnipeg Jets on Monday, scoring with just 47 seconds remaining in regulation to give the Flames a record-matching 10th straight win.
He broke a 1-1 tie at 7:31 into the third period on Saturday to lift Calgary to a 2-1 win against Mark Giordano and the Seattle Kraken, too.
(The third of the trio wasn’t as dramatic, scoring the Flames’ third goal in a 6-2 drubbing of the Columbus Blue Jackets last week.)
One more, and he’ll become the first player to net four consecutive win-clinchers in the NHL since 2006-07.
“Goal scoring is one thing,” Flames coach Darryl Sutter started. “Lots of guys are scoring goals but don’t score big goals, or at playoff time, don’t get scoring chances. He scores big goals which usually translates into the next part.”
Each was scored at even-strength.
In fact, almost all his damage has come 5-on-5 netting 14 of his 15 February points at even-strength.
By way of his eight-game goal scoring streak, in which he has nine markers, Lindholm has been kept off the board in just one game — the first of the month, too. His 10-game point streak that expands beyond January too, netting 16 points (nine goals, seven assists) in in 10 games.
The Flames are too, as a result.