GDFD No. 57: Honey, we’re home!


Welcome to the ninth Game Day Fire Drill, for this, Calgary’s 57th game of the season on Feb. 17, 2009.

It just seemed like the Flames were on the road for about six months there, huh? All those late nights (for me here in Boston, anyway) against all those mediocre teams. And the awful, unwatchable play didn’t help any.

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But fear not, valiant Calgarians, your boys have returned home with five of six points they in no way deserved, extending the division lead to nine big points over the Oilers and tonight’s opponent, the Vancouver Canucks.

I know in the past few years it’s become rather en vogue to hate the Canucks on a level that isn’t too far from the Oiler hate, but I never bought into it, really. Yeah, I hated that 2003-04 Canucks team, sure. Bertuzzi, Naslund, Jovanovski, Morrison, Cooke, Malik, Ruutu, May. Pretty much jerks across the board. But only one of those guys is still with Vancouver, and even the coaches, goaltenders and front office guys are different (and don’t we miss Dan Cloutier terribly?).

This new iteration of the Canucks isn’t all that hateable, to me at least. I can respect the Sedins for how good they are, if not almost like them. Alain Vigneault would be unlikeable except he’s so bad at his job that I can’t be bothered to care about him either way. Luongo’s just a great goalie.

Maybe the most hateable player on the team is Alex Burrows. And even then, he does an hilarious impression of Marc Crawford, so I can’t even line up against him completely.

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I miss the old days.


The Calgary Flames (33-18-5 for 71 points). Third in the West, first in the Northwest) and the Vancouver Canucks (27-21-8 for 62 points. Tied for seventh in the West, tied for second in the Northwest)


7:30 p.m. Mountain time and 9:30 p.m. Eastern time. All other time zones should jam to an asian baby crushing Hey Jude.


Pengrowth Saddledome, Calgary, Alberta.

Calgary is 20-7-3 at home this year, but were 1-2-0 in their last homestand against competition that ranged from very good (Chicago, to which the Flames lost) to very bad (Montreal, which the Flames handled easily). Vancouver is 13-10-4 on the road this year, but are 3-1-2 in their last six road games. Of course, they’ve also played those six over the course of the last month and a half. The Flames are 2-1-1 against the Canucks so far this year.

What (to hate about the Canucks):

Mats Sundin — All we heard all summer long was how great Mats is at this and how wonderful Mats did that! Mats Mats Mats! Good thing he is now the best-paid third-liner in the NHL. God, he’s a bald, useless turd. Just like another former Canuck we can think of.

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Mattias Ohlund — Remember how a few years ago Vancouver fans acted like Ohlund was as good as Robyn Regehr? Richie Regehr was more like it.

I once dated a Canucks fan — What a bad call that was.

Sami Salo — More like the Finished MacInnis. Am I right, folks?

That 2004 playoff series — Oh, sorry, that’s meant to be filed under “What to love about the Canucks.”

The 6-0 loss to start the season — I was largely unhappy with how it turned out.

They seem to think “Canuck” is another word for “killer whale” — Sorry, guys, but the word you’re looking for is “orca.” “Orca” is another word for killer whale.

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Mark Rypien — You may have heard that he is related to two good athletes. He is not one himself.


Seems like a good idea. Enjoy the game and feel free actually comment this time in the comments section!

  • RCN

    Hey TLP,
    Your post reminded me of this 'News Release' I was forwarded on Tuesday, April 20, 2004 11:19 am from a Canucks frenemy:

    "News Release:
    The NHL has just released a press release thanking the Vancouver
    Canucks. It was not public knowledge until this morning that the
    Calgary Flames are in financial trouble and would not be able to meet
    payroll. The club had told the NHL Board of Directors that it had
    planned to move the team to Seattle Washington at the end of this
    season. The reason team officials cited was lack of money generated
    from the long 15 year playoff drought. Team officials stated if the
    Flames lost yet another playoff round, especially after not making the
    playoffs for the last 8 years, that the bank would be empty and the club
    had no recourse but to move.

    The NHL said it was one of the most unselfish things any NHL club has
    done, letting the Flames win in order to keep the club in Canada. Some
    of the Canucks' players struggled holding back and thought it would be
    exciting and good for the league to take game 7 into overtime with a
    dramatic last second game tying goal. "We knew we would have to really
    lay off in the O.T." said Canucks captain Markus Naslund, "It was
    difficult, but everyone knew how important it was to the league, so we
    just laid back and tried to look like we were going while letting the
    Flames get inside." Brent Sopel added" I almost had to push the Flames
    into the front of the net to make sure he got the rebound, it looked
    like he was going to skate away and Alex Auld was trying to give him
    some room to shoot the puck."

    The NHL and the Vancouver Canucks have said that now that they have
    done their part in keeping the Flames in Canada, it will likely be
    another 15 years before the Flames will win another playoff series."

    Funny Stuff.
    I kept the e-mail because it still makes me laugh.
    Flames 4 Nucks 2

  • RCN

    Iginla's looking better tonight. The goal was very nice, obviously. But on the second 4v4, he got that shot through to the net, that was great to see. On another night, that shot would have been blocked, or maybe he would have had his stick checked.

  • RCN

    walkinvisible wrote:

    FlamesFanInETown wrote:
    Can someone on the team kick Bert’s butt for taking stupid penalties? Please?
    it’s effin’ painful, hey ?

    It's like every game, he's GOT to take a stupid penalty. It doesn't always result in a goal, but it can be like tonight, and kill a power play.

    It's just stupid or selfish plays. And so frustrating, because when he plays well, he's AWESOME. They should give him a blond wig for a couple shifts a game, so at least his teammates would know when he's going to do something dumb.

  • RCN

    Iginla looks like himself tonight. Good news.

    As does Bert. What a friggen disaster that guy was. Stupid offensive zone penalty? Check. Give-aways at the offensive blueline? Check. Give-aways in his own zone? Check. Minus player? Check.


  • RCN

    I effing LOVE the Langkow/Moss/Glencross line. Stroke o' genius.

    On the other hand, the Good fellas are getting pwned tonight. Also – Phaneuf needs to take a seat. If I see him mess up a couple of own zone passes again, only to be double-shiftedover Giordano (who is getting el shafto tonight) Im going to kick something.

  • RCN

    EV shots are 27-17. It's about freaking time.

    I like Bourque-Conroy-Iginla so far, at least when they get in the offensive zone. I don't know who's responsible, but Iginla has been getting open tonight.

  • RCN

    You know what the problem with the Canucks is? They have no class at all. Kipper makes arguably the save of the game and all he can say is,

    "Kyle got what he deserves," said Vigneault. "I mean, he is not bearing down and had an open net. He’s shooting the puck two miles an hour. You have to bear down, you have to put your full weight into it, you have to shoot it. He might have been standing there a little bit. Obviously, it looked like the goalie made a big save, but the player didn’t have a great attempt there."

    You arent going to like many of your opponents (especially division rivals) but to be regarded a half decent coach and person you gotta give credit where credit is due. This is such an unclassy comment. It reminded me well of a comment AV made at the beginning of the year when Iggy fought, and beat Mitchell, and all he could say is something like, "Iggy would have lost pretty bad if Mitchells jersey didnt rip."

    Beleive it or not admitting another teams success doesnt deflate your team. In a weird way it actually builds them up, particularily in a loss because losing to a great goalie/team (or beating them even) will make your team look a little better…