Postgame: Back on the Winning Side

Pat Steinberg
January 14 2011 09:46PM

The Calgary Flames made it a little difficult on themselves Friday night in Ottawa, but three second period goals was enough for the Flames to snap a four game losing skid and take a 3-2 win over the Senators.  The Flames allowed a pair of goals in the second period as the Sens put their full court press on, but it's a win and the Flames can move on to Toronto with a win.

What Happened

A fairly meh first period saw no scoring and saw the Flames outshot 14-8 by the Sens, thanks in large part to a couple powerplay opportunities.  Really, it was one of those "nothing to see here" periods, and neither team controlled the play.  Kent had scoring chances 6-3 in favor of the Sens.

The second period was a much different story, as the Flames came out and worked an inferior hockey team, something they should have done in the opening frame.  Calgary opened the scoring shortly after a powerplay chance expired, as David Moss went hard to the net and re-directed a Rene Bourque shot past Brian Elliott at 5:32.  It was Moss, who's really played some strong hockey the last while, who put the Flames up by a pair at 7:55.  His eighth of the season was a nice shot with players going hard to the net and was an exclamation mark on a really strong start to the period.  Calgary would score once more before the second period would let out, as Ales Kotalik got in on the action, pinballing a powerplay point shot past Elliott with 17 seconds remaining.  Calgary was dominant, with scoring chances 7-3.

A chasing Senators team found a way back into this game in the third period, albeit probably a little late.  Nick Foligno put home his seventh of the season at 8:56 to give Ottawa some life, and it seemed to work, as the home side started to buzz...which is expected with the team throwing everything into the offensive attack.  Late in the frame, Milan Michalek would score coming off the side boards to get the Sens within one, but that's as close as they'd get.  As they should have, the Flames take a win in Ottawa; the final score ends up 3-2.

One Good Reason...

...why the Flames won?  Well, they dominated the second period, scored three goals, and that's all they'd need.  Sometimes you need a "good 60 minute effort" to win a hockey game, but against a brutal team like the Sens, one period like that is enough.  The Flames hung on in the third period, and Henrik Karlsson played all right to get the win.

Red Warrior

Hey, I'll go against the grain a little bit here: Adam Pardy.  He played 23:04 and finished on the plus side on the scoring chance count.  He was asked to fill a larger role on the Flames blueline with the abscence of Robyn Regehr thanks to a sore knee.  Pardy stepped up, played some strong hockey alongside Cory Sarich, and you have to tip your hat to him.  There's no word on if Regehr will play Saturday in Toronto, so if he doesn't, Pardy will have to put in a similar effort.

Sum It Up

Hey, two points is two points, and that's the only thing that matters to the current group of Flames players.  As cynical as we all are, for good reason, you've gotta give them credit...since we started hearing this "win two of three" thing, they've done it.  Over their last nine games, the Flames have 12 points, which puts them at .666 clip of winning.  Can it continue for 38 more games? Eh, no, probably not.  But I thought I'd point it out.

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Pat Steinberg can be heard daily on the Fan960 in Calgary at can be read at the FAN 960. Born and raised in Calgary, Steinberg considers himself a huge fan of all sports including the CFL, MMA and 13 round bare knuckle boxing matches. Follow Steinberg on Twitter at www.twitter.com/Fan960Steinberg.
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#1 everton fc
January 14 2011, 10:15PM
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@Steinberg

"Over their last nine games, the Flames have 12 points, which puts them at .666 clip of winning. Can it continue for 38 more games? Eh, no, probably not. But I thought I'd point it out."

What if they do - and finsh 7th or 8th? You never know. If they win their next two...

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#3 GermanFlame
January 14 2011, 10:32PM
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everton fc wrote:

@Steinberg

"Over their last nine games, the Flames have 12 points, which puts them at .666 clip of winning. Can it continue for 38 more games? Eh, no, probably not. But I thought I'd point it out."

What if they do - and finsh 7th or 8th? You never know. If they win their next two...

Getting into 7th or 8th would be interesting.

It would be Detroit or Vancouver... Even though we probably couldnt compete with either in a 7 game series, I wouldnt mind making it hard on Vancouver in the First round.

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#4 Palt
January 14 2011, 11:13PM
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I hate to be the perpetual pesimist, but hang on guys. Im not sure we should be talking about this team actually making the dance. Just a couple of days ago we were all giving our take on how the Flames should "rebuild". I dont wanna spoil the fun, because the Flames, as a whole, have been playing some pretty good hockey lately, and aside from some lackluster goaltending, theyve seemed like a pretty decent team. BUT, I believe its just hot streak that the team is going thru. Cmon, a win against Ottawa isnt a good reason to start thinking about playoffs matches.

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#5 everton fc
January 14 2011, 11:35PM
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@Palt

"I hate to be the perpetual pesimist, but hang on guys. Im not sure we should be talking about this team actually making the dance. Just a couple of days ago we were all giving our take on how the Flames should "rebuild". :

That's why I brought it up! That said... Ottawa was in 14th at the end of January last year. As a fan, I'm still pulling for this rag-tag bunch.

But my objective side says, "No way!"

Still... Go Flames!

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#6 SmellOfVictory
January 15 2011, 02:52AM
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If they do make the playoffs they'd damn well better luck their way into a cup, because otherwise the team will just be that much more screwed next season.

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#7 GermanFlame
January 15 2011, 02:58AM
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@Palt

I guess in a way I was thinking about playoff matchups which was silly of me. But I was mainly stating that anyone who finishes 7th or 8th will be facing Detroit or Vancouver. And I wouldnt mind it if the Canucks get a tough team to play in the first round.

But IMO, The Flames are not bad enough to be a bottom 5 team right now in the NHL to get that top 5 pick people are talking about. And they are not going to tank it just for the sake of it.

So after a Flames win, and 12 pts in their last 9 games, Im going to try and be positive for now.

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#8 everton fc
January 15 2011, 08:31AM
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We've played the Wings well this year, I think. Considering the rosters.

I think if we could wear them down... we could stay close. The Canucks are another story.

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#9 schevvy
January 15 2011, 08:40AM
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@everton fc

If we did sneak into 7th or 8th, we would have to be playing pretty good, so we would have momentum. It would be tough, but remember 2004? :)

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#10 everton fc
January 15 2011, 08:46AM
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@schevvy

Might as well think this way... Karma may pierce the hearts of our Flames and send them on a bit of a run!

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#11 Tach
January 15 2011, 10:15AM
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@SmellOfVictory

I don't think this is necessarily true. If we play at .666 the rest of the way, that means our players are playing better and they will be more valuable in the trade market. If Feaster (or whomever) is really honest about the prospects for this team and are reloading or restructuring, they should be able to net better return on moving those assets.

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