As Calgary Flames fans were welcomed to a warm Pengrowth Saddledome on Tuesday evening—leaving behind the cold feel of a Calgary fall night—they were also hoping the Flames would be able to leave behind a little baggage they have been carrying with them since the beginning of November.
After finishing the month of October with an impressive 6-3-3 start, the Calgary Flames have found themselves in a spiraling downfall, still looking for their first win in November against the Minnesota Wild.
In October, the Flamers were able to comeback from a 3-0 deficit in the first period and win the game 5-3, with Iginla, Phaneuf, Tanguay, and Regehr lighting the lamp. Unfortunately, the Flames were unable to be as proud of their performance on November 3rd, as they walked away from the Xcel Energy Centre with a 4-1 loss, making it their second straight defeat and ultimately resulting in a five game losing skid.
Even with the return of Daymond Langkow, the game was anything but exciting. In fact, the home crowd didn’t seem to really get into the game until 15:43, when Dion Phaneuf received a pass from Alex Tanguay and put it passed Niklas Backstrom to notch the first goal of the game on the powerplay.
The boys in red were able to hold onto that 1-0 lead until 3:17 of the third period, when Mikko Koivu was able to get his stick on a pass from Mark Parrish and put his fourth goal of the season past Miikka Kiprusoff. The Wild were able to put the pressure on the Calgary Flames squad, and at 9:52, with Alex Tanguay in the penalty box, Mikko Koivu scored for the second time in the game to give the Wild their first lead all night late in the third period.
The lead was short lived however, as twenty-one seconds later Craig Conroy was able to feed a pass to the Flames' captain, who got off a shot thanks to a deflection off a Minnesota skate, enabling the puck to get by the Minnesota net minder.
After Iginla’s goal extended his point streak to seven games, the Flames appeared to take back the momentum, and with 0:53 seconds left on the clock, Kristian Huselius was able to put the winning goal passed Backstrom and snap the Flames' five game losing streak.
While one losing streak came to an end, another carried right along, as the Wild’s 3-2 defeat in Calgary handed them their fifth straight loss on the road.
Unlike in their past few games, Mike Keenan’s squad seemed to come out more as a team. With Langkow and Warrener returning to the line-up on Tuesday night, hits and passes were completed more consistently, and the shots came from a wider variety of players than simply the big gunners such as Phaneuf, Iginla, & Huselius.
There was one unfortunate part to the divisional match up: Adrian Aucoin took a shot off the ankle in the third period, and did not return to the game.
The Calgary Flames will now have three days off, as they celebrate their newfound confidence and work their way towards a winning streak going. The Flames' next game will be the third installment of the battle of Alberta, as they face off against the Edmonton Oilers on Hockey Night in Canada from Rexall Place.
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!