The Calgary Flames last few games have been made that much more difficult. Last night they went into Vancouver with a win on their minds and that’s not exactly the result they left the building with. The Calgary Flames lost the hockey game with a score of 3-1. Their northwest division leaders and long time rivals just simply got the better of Calgary in this game. The Flames will have a chance to redeem themselves since this wasn’t the last time they’ll face Vancouver this season, but what they need to concentrate on are winning some of their next games.
Before we go to the next games though, let’s take a closer look at what happened in this game and what went wrong for Calgary.
Right off the bat the Vancouver Canucks got to business in this game. 1: 13 into the game the Vancouver Canucks managed to beat Calgary’s goaltender, Miikka Kiprusoff to make the score 1-0 for the Canucks. Daniel Sedin scored the first goal with a wrist shot beating Kiprusoff. Assists came from his brother, Henrik Sedin and Alex Edler.
It wouldn’t stop there, Vancouver had much more to hand the Calgary Flames. At 7:27 into the period another shot from the Vancouver Canucks would end up in the back of the Calgary net. Ryan Kesler would score from a wrist shot to make it 2-0 for the Vancouver Canucks. Assist came from Alex Burrows.
The 1st period scoring wouldn’t finish there, Vancouver had one more in the tank. Henrik Sedin would score this time. It came at 16:26 while Vancouver was on the power play. Another wrist shot(rebound too) would get past Miikka Kiprusoff. Assists came from Daniel Sedin and Mikael Samuelsson. So with that the score at the end of the 1st would be 3-0 for the Canucks. It wasn’t looking too good for Calgary.
There was another situation like this that day when Chicago ran up the score on the Washington Capitals taking an early 3-0 lead on them. The Caps battled back to take the game 4-3 in OT though. The Flames should’ve took this as an inspiration for them, sadly they did not.
Things stayed at a stalemate through the second period. Neither team got anything on the board. So after 2 periods of play Vancouver still led 3-0.
In the third period Calgary finally got something on the board. Robyn Regehr scored at 11:50. The goal came from a nice slapshot and ended Luongo’s shutout performance. The assists came from Daymond Langkow and Curtis Glencross. So with the lead cut to a 2 goal lead Calgary had a chance to take advantage. Sadly the Calgary Flames would not put anymore goals in the Vancouver back-end.
The final score: Vancouver 3, Calgary 1.
1 loss, 1 playoff push that just became so much more difficult. Calgary didn’t do themselves a favour dropping this game to the Vancouver Canucks. They have 14 more games left and they don’t get much easier from here. Only 4 of the 14 remaining games are against teams that are not currently in playoff position.
Miikka Kiprusoff was replaced at the start of the second period (after the first period ended). Kiprusoff faced 20 shots, saving 17 of them. Vancouver outshot Calgary badly in the first period. After that Calgary would take control of the shot total, but it wouldn’t really help them out.
Brent Sutter had this to say on the goalie change:
“Kipper had played one game already. Twenty-some shots and 14 or 15 quality scoring chances, the period was completely dominated by Vancouver and I didn’t think it was fair to our goaltender to keep him in there.”
Vesa Toskala, Calgary’s back up managed to keep all shots after that out of the net. However that’s not really an accomplishment when there were only 8 shots on net after the 1st period where Kiprusoff got bombarded with 20.
This loss ended Calgary’s 4 game winning streak and put a halt to any momentum they had going for them. However things are not all bad. The next game Calgary will play is against the very same team holding down that 8th spot in the Western Conference, the Detroit Red Wings. With 1 point separating the two a win would put Calgary into playoff position and it would make up for this loss at the hands of the Vancouver Canucks.
Calgary Flames Next Five Games(MM/DD/YY):
Today vs. Detroit Red Wings (03/15/10)
Wednesday vs. Colorado Avalanche (3/17/10)
Friday vs. San Jose Sharks (3/19/10)
Sunday vs. Minnesota Wild (3/21/10)
Tuesday vs. Anaheim Ducks (3/23/10)
So Calgary Flames fans, stay tuned because the most important part of the season is upon us. This time will show us whether we’ll be contending for Lord Stanley’s Cup or whether the team will be at home watching as the other 16 teams will be playing. Anything is possible and I really think if we can make it into the playoffs we can truly be a big underdog threat for the Cup, but there are so many steps to take to get to that point.
Anyways, I’m out Sea of Red, Go Flames Go!
This post was originally published on FTS Sports Writing under the name "Fire Put Out Early: Calgary Flames Fall To Vancouver Canucks 3-1." Check out more from our talented staff of writers.