FGD: Winging It With Kipper

Ryan Pike
April 17 2013 12:22PM

We're down to the nitty-gritty, folks, as the Flames (16-22-4) can mathematically be eliminated from the post-season (and get a little closer to a high draft pick) with a loss tonight against the Detroit Red Wings (20-15-7).

Tonight's game starts at 7:30 on TSN and your radio friends at Sportsnet 960 The Fan.

The kids will continue to be the item of interest down the stretch, but the top story tonight may be Flames netminder Miikka Kiprusoff. Suiting up for the 574th time as a Calgary Flame, he may be playing one of his last contests in the Scotiabank Saddledome. Flames coach Bob Hartley noted after practice that Kiprusoff will play tonight and Friday, as well.

THE LINE-UP

Besides Kiprusoff making his first start in awhile, the other big story is the return of Matt Stajan to the Flames line-up. Before his upper-body injury, Stajan was one of Calgary's best, most consistent players. He'll replace Roman Cervenka in the line-up which, all due respect to the Czech player, is probably an upgrade.

Here's how the lines look according to Pat Steinberg:

  • Baertschi - Stajan - Stempniak
  • Glencross - Backlund - Hudler
  • Cammalleri - Horak - Hanowski
  • Begin - Reinhart - Jackman

  • Brodie - Wideman
  • Giordano - Sarich
  • Butler - Carson

  • Kiprusoff

Wunderkind Ben Hanowski has cut his hair, so please remember that he's wearing #58 for your hockey heroes. He joins a few good group of young players with ridiculously high numbers: Sven Baertschi (#47), Roman Horak (#51) and Max “Power” Reinhart (#59) are the others. 

THE OPPOSITION

The Red Wings are a pretty good hockey team and have been for awhile. However, they're in a fight for their playoff lives lately and may actually miss the playoffs for the first time since 1989-90.

However, the Wings have been helping out their own cause lately, going 2-1-2 in their last five and finding ways to get points any which way they can. They most recently blanked the Nashville Predators 3-0 on Sunday night, so they're rested.

Here's how their lines may look:

  • Zetterberg - Datsyuk - Abdelkader
  • Franzen - Filippula - Cleary
  • Nyquist - Andersson - Brunner
  • Miller - Emmerton - Tootoo

  • Kronwall - Ericsson
  • DeKeyser - Kindl
  • White - Smith

  • Howard

The Wings have some strong top-six players. The Flames beat them handily during their last visit to the 'Dome, but that was primarily due to some terrifying defensive zone play and some awful goaltending from Jonas Gustavsson, who won't play tonight.

Detroit's in desperation mode, needing a win to give them breathing room – they're tied with Columbus (at 47 points) with a game in hand, with Dallas just two points back.

SUM IT UP

The Flames are playing for next year. The Wings are playing for the playoffs. The Flames are in audition mode. The Wings are in desperation mode.

On the other hand, the Saddledome will be filled to the brim with emotion, as the fans prepare to possibly say goodbye to #34. If that emotion spills over to the Flames players, this could be quite the hockey game.

 

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Now in his third full season covering the Calgary Flames and the NHL, Ryan Pike is a Calgary native and FlamesNation's managing editor. He's trying to keep his head up, his stick on the ice and is giving it 110% every shift. You can also find his work at The Hockey Writers, the Wrestling Observer and Tough Talk MMA.
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#101 Avalain
April 17 2013, 04:15PM
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Q wrote:

Was it just me or does Hanowski look a bit chubby for a hockey player?

Not sure about the chubbiness, but I thought in the interview that he had this big dent in his forehead...?

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#102 Q
April 17 2013, 04:21PM
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@Double Dion

Fair enough. Chubby or not, if he scores for us I'm happy! Reminds me of one summer my brother and I went to see the flames play at a charity softball game . Bryan Glynn was a rookie who hadn't even played yet. He was straight-up fat. I bet at least 50 lbs overweight apparently Tim hunter put him on his exercise program and he was ready by day one. It was weird seeing everyone else lean and he was really fat. Of course hanowskis not like that. Maybe it was the locks?

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#103 Q
April 17 2013, 04:22PM
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@Baalzamon

I can't believe they spent all that money on semin and didn't get at least a descent backup!

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#104 kittensandcookies
April 17 2013, 04:26PM
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@Q

That's what she said!

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#105 Q
April 17 2013, 04:43PM
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@Q

That right!

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#106 W
April 17 2013, 04:48PM
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Anyone catch just how much of an idiot Lowe looked like in his apology?! Putting mactavish in is as close to the smell of Sutter nepotism as it gets. He didn't like being called out by the reporter who asked him why they were going back to the person who started the mess! Lowe should have been fired!

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#107 suba steve
April 17 2013, 04:58PM
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@beloch

"Of all the goalie prospects in the Flames system, Berra has the least promising stat sheet. He's 26 and has posted MacBackup-like numbers in the Swiss-A league for several years now. I'd honestly like to know what Feaster&Co. see in this guy.

I agree that it'd be nice to see him in net for the rest of this season though."

I'm hoping that what they SEE in him, involves actually SEEING him play. I have not, so hoping they have done their homework, assuming they have. The return on the Iggy trade is starting to look a little better then first thought, hope that will be the case in the JBo return as well.

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#108 suba steve
April 17 2013, 05:05PM
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kittensandcookies wrote:

Dude, he has FIVE cups. And ten girls.

Wait what?

I think he actually won six?

One for each ear (like Roy), and four up his A55.

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#109 Chris Fairfield
April 17 2013, 06:17PM
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beloch wrote:

Of all the goalie prospects in the Flames system, Berra has the least promising stat sheet. He's 26 and has posted MacBackup-like numbers in the Swiss-A league for several years now. I'd honestly like to know what Feaster&Co. see in this guy.

I agree that it'd be nice to see him in net for the rest of this season though.

Is there any news on Ramo?

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#110 Kent Wilson
April 17 2013, 07:42PM
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TSN must know that I hate to watch the first 5-10 minutes of Flames games......

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#111 schevvy
April 17 2013, 07:46PM
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Flames are gonna win tonight. They've had Detroit's number all year. 4-2 CGY

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#112 Kent Wilson
April 17 2013, 07:53PM
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@Chris Fairfield

He can't sign until the end of the month.

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#113 schevvy
April 17 2013, 07:53PM
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Butler and Carson. Bad, bad pairing.

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#114 Kent Wilson
April 17 2013, 08:00PM
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Decent start, although DET is starting to pull away somewhat. Still, Flames don't look grossly overmatched yet.

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#115 Clay
April 17 2013, 08:02PM
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Even if Ramö and Berra don't pan out, we will have the best jersey tandem in the league.

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#116 Kent Wilson
April 17 2013, 08:05PM
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Really great play by Baertschi on that spin pass.

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#117 mk
April 17 2013, 08:05PM
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Stempniak is definitely not getting the memos about this season...

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#118 RexLibris
April 17 2013, 08:08PM
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schevvy wrote:

Flames are gonna win tonight. They've had Detroit's number all year. 4-2 CGY

Wait? Are you trying to use some reverse psychology there, schevvy?

You diabolical villain, you!

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#119 clyde
April 17 2013, 08:08PM
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Bench Sven!He will be thankfull for it.

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#120 RexLibris
April 17 2013, 08:09PM
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Iginla with a goal and assist tonight.

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#121 mk
April 17 2013, 08:12PM
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RexLibris wrote:

Iginla with a goal and assist tonight.

I've been watching most of the Pens game since the trade and I swear the players on that team look at Iginla like he's 80. There just seems to be a wary eye turned his direction all the time.

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#122 RexLibris
April 17 2013, 08:15PM
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@mk

Interesting. I haven't watched any Pens games this year, but probably will catch some during the post-season. I'm intrigued to see that storyline play out over the course of the playoffs.

I know emotions in Calgary are mixed: cheer Iginla on for a Cup, or hope the Pens tank and heighten the value of the pick?

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#123 schevvy
April 17 2013, 08:15PM
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Iggy :(

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#124 RKD
April 17 2013, 08:19PM
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mk wrote:

I've been watching most of the Pens game since the trade and I swear the players on that team look at Iginla like he's 80. There just seems to be a wary eye turned his direction all the time.

They might be doing the same with Murray and Morrow, Iggy has 49 points in 54 playoff games. He shows up in the post season unlike a majority of players. Time will tell if he can help the Pens win a Cup.

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#125 schevvy
April 17 2013, 08:21PM
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RexLibris wrote:

Interesting. I haven't watched any Pens games this year, but probably will catch some during the post-season. I'm intrigued to see that storyline play out over the course of the playoffs.

I know emotions in Calgary are mixed: cheer Iginla on for a Cup, or hope the Pens tank and heighten the value of the pick?

I want Iggy to win the Cup. Realistically, even if Pitt loses 1st round, the best the pick can be is 25. Difference between 25-30 is not that big. So for me, go Iggy!

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#126 RexLibris
April 17 2013, 08:23PM
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@ChinookArch

That's a funny coincidence. Most Oiler fans I know are calling a Blues/Penguins SCF. I wonder why?

;-)

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#127 Tyler
April 17 2013, 08:24PM
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Anybody else have Shaw gateway? I saw a few minutes of the game before it froze up yet again. Happens every night now. Shaw just shrugs their shoulders and says it seems fine on thier end. Sending another tech tomorrow night to "check it". I spent a lot of dough on this system. Unreal.

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#128 mk
April 17 2013, 08:25PM
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@RexLibris

That is a hard one. I'm pulling for the cup for him. I don't think it will make much difference on the quality of player from the pick.

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#129 mattyc
April 17 2013, 08:37PM
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If i remember correctly it was a 1st (that later got replaced by moving Tanguay)

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#130 RexLibris
April 17 2013, 08:38PM
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Speaking of Matt Stajan, and centers...

There is some speculation up here that Brad Richards could be a compliance buyout this summer.

Seems a bit of fantasy, but when I heard that the first thought that went through my head was: I wonder if Feaster would....

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#131 mattyc
April 17 2013, 08:38PM
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@schevvy

Which Jokinen trade? I thought his trade to get Higgins wasn't bad. I still really like him, and get to see him lots living in vancouver.

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#132 mattyc
April 17 2013, 08:55PM
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so is Howard worth 6 x 5.5mil?

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#133 mk
April 17 2013, 09:00PM
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Oh good. Wouldn't want to break the 22 year streak now...

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#134 Q
April 17 2013, 09:29PM
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Anyone else agree that the person needing to be fired was Lowe, most of all? They have a ton of young talent. I'm actually surprised Brent Sutter wasn't hired after the world championships. Lowe is in waaaay over his head and they don't have talent because of his ingenuity!

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#135 A
April 17 2013, 09:30PM
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@KENT Any thoughts on what the flames offer Brodie?

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#136 Q
April 17 2013, 09:32PM
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Sorry KENT that last Brodie question was from me Q

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#137 Kent Wilson
April 17 2013, 09:36PM
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@A

Im guessing his agent councils him to take 2 to 3 years.

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#138 Q
April 17 2013, 09:39PM
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Freakn begin! :(

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#139 Q
April 17 2013, 09:56PM
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That guy deserves a 6 year deal ! Wow ....brutal!

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#140 RKD
April 17 2013, 10:04PM
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That goal sums up the kinda of season's it's been for Kipper, the Fox guys are brutal. Franzen ended the series a few years back against the Flames, double OT.

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#141 RKD
April 17 2013, 10:07PM
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Other notable goalies beaten from near center ice: Dan Cloutier, Chris Osgood, Vesa Toskala

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#142 schevvy
April 17 2013, 10:09PM
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Good for Kipper.

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#143 Kent Wilson
April 17 2013, 10:11PM
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Chances were 9-2 Wings in the third. Amazing the Flames won this one.

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#144 beloch
April 17 2013, 10:11PM
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I have two questions for Kipper:

1. How was the coffee in Forest Lawn?
2. What sound does a Roswell grey make with 6 feet of carbon fiber sticking out of its chest?

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#145 Q
April 17 2013, 10:11PM
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Sick kipper! Just sick!

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#146 A!
April 17 2013, 10:15PM
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Suck! We move up on the Oil and down in the draft! Uggh!

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#147 Q
April 17 2013, 10:19PM
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That was our last win . We're gonna get worked like a thanksgiving turkey now and we draft top5.

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#148 schevvy
April 17 2013, 10:22PM
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Updated standings: CGY moves ahead of Carolina, tied with Nashville and Tampa, although Flames have played one fewer game than Nashville and have 1 more ROW than Tampa. Only 1 point behind EDM.

As of right now, top 10 draft would be:

1.Florida 2.Colorado 3.Carolina 4.Nashville 5.Tampa Bay 6.Calgary 7.Edmonton 8.New Jersey 9.Philadelphia 10.Phoenix

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#149 schevvy
April 17 2013, 10:25PM
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If any of the mods want to fix up the format of my list...would be much appreciated!

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#150 Q
April 17 2013, 10:28PM
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Just looking at our schedule vs the lightning, avs, preds, and canes. We're gonna get the second or 3rd pick.

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