February 28 2013 08:40AM
1. Stajan didn't dive
Something I saw a lot in the immediate aftermath of Charlie Coyle drilling Matt Stajan in the face with the rookie's shoulder pad a good second after he releases the puck was that Stajan dove, or at least embellished, on the play. In which he was plainly hit in the face. With a shoulder pad.
Coyle won't be suspended because the principal point of contact apparently was Stajan's chest, and not his face. And you also have to take into account that Coyle therefore didn't specifically target the head. Now, as to whether that explanation holds a lot of water given the way the league has been calling things the last two years is obviously up for debate.
February 27 2013 09:28AM
Another month, another round of NHL equivalencies. Things are starting to wind down, with many of the various other leagues entering the final quarter of the season give or take. That means we're getting close to the final NHLE numbers for all of these kids this year.
Aside from a couple of stand-outs, it's unfortunately been an inauspicious season for Flames prospects, at least by this measure. Converting output to an NHL translation has it's uses but also it's limitations, primarily because counting stats obviously don't provide a complete picture of the player in question.
February 26 2013 09:55PM
Being that it was the third time your Calgary Flames have played these Minnesota Wild in the past sixteen days, you'd think there would be a solid game plan that would allow Calgary to get out of St. Paul with two points, a game above .500 and their third win in a row.
A win would have drawn the Flames to within one point of 8th in the West and finally gain some momentum with a tough stretch of games looming near. Too bad they couldn't pull it all together, because despite playing poorly once again in front of a goalie not named Kiprusoff, Joey MacDonald played pretty damn well; giving his team chance after chance to redeem their poor play with even a lucky bounce or a garbage goal.
There's only so many chances you get to stifle a guy like Zach Parise in one game; tonight the Flames pushed those odds one too many times.
February 26 2013 02:08PM
For the third time this season (already) the Calgary Flames tangle with the Minnesota Wild. The Flames lost to the Wild in typical 2-1 (shootout) fashion a few weeks back, then somehow managed to avoid another shootout on Saturday and won by a 3-1 score.
With three out of a possible four points against their division rivals, the Flames look to get closer to a playoff spot tonight with their first trip this season to the Land of 10,000 Lakes. Your local hockey heroes enter the evening three points out of eighth in the West, but can get to within one with a win – eighth place Dallas is playing lowly Columbus tonight, but Los Angeles is idle and both teams have the same number of points. More importantly, the Flames can get above the .500 mark for the first time under new head coach Bob Hartley. That would be tres bien, doncha think?
Game-time is 6pm on Sportsnet West and Sportsnet 960 The Fan. Depending on how you experience the game, Rob Kerr and/or Peter Maher has the call.
February 26 2013 10:54AM
We're 17 games into the Flames 2013 season and Calgary has just 17 points, good for 13th in the Western Conference. The Chicago Blackhawks are 18 points ahead of the Flames in the standings. The line between the contenders and pretenders seems to have already been permanently etched in stone.
In truth, we're still very much operating in the land of noise. The current standings and success rates offer only the merest hint of how good each team actually is in the broad scheme of things. In fact, we probably won't get to the true talent "signal" at any point this season given how short it is, but at 48-games we'll at least sort of have a better idea than we do now.