Welcome to the 32nd Game Day Fire Drill, for this, Calgary’s 80th (and most important) game of the season on April 7, 2009.
No, really, this is it. This is pretty much the season right here.
Flames lose tonight and Vancouver just put itself in a very good position to win the division title, meaning the Flames finish either fourth or fifth and likely play the Chicago Blackhawks, against whom they earned one point in four games this year, in the first round of the playoffs.
Flames win tonight and they ensure that they, and not the Canucks, win the division title, meaning the Flames finish third and probably play the Blue Jackets or Ducks in the first round, a much more desireable matchup either way. Calgary split the season series with Columbus and took three of eight points from the Ducks. Not great, but not only one point either.
But the obstacle is that Vancouver had a night off and didn’t have to travel and Calgary was still playing 24 hours before the puck drops tonight at 8 p.m. Mountain time. Plus that whole “record in back-to-backs” thing poses a bit of a problem.
No worries though! We’re staying positive tonight!
Thus, I know for a fact that at least five of the following 10 things WILL happen tonight:
- Jarome Iginla has a multiple-point night.
- Daymond Langkow has a goal.
- Miikka Kiprusoff stands on his head.
- The power play lights Roberto Luongo up like Times Square on New Years Eve.
- Dion Phaneuf demolishes someone.
- Two goals come from guys with less than 10 on the year.
- Olli Jokinen makes his long-awaited return to the scoresheet.
- Someone has a Gordie Howe hat trick.
- Todd Bertuzzi comes to PLAY tonight.
- Jamie Lundmark plays the hero.
I just have a great feeling about tonight.
(Sorry once again gang, it’s yet another early one because I have to be at work at 1 p.m. your time and might not make it home for the start of the game. Agh! Make sure you comment your asses off so I can follow along on my BlackBerry beyond just the score. I’m counting on you fine guys and gals tonight. Don’t let me down.)
The Calgary Flames (45-28-6 for 95 points. Fourth in the West, first in the Northwest) and the Vancouver Canucks (42-27-10 for 94 points. Fifth in the West, second in the Northwest).
8 p.m. Mountain time and 10 p.m. Eastern time. All other time zones should learn something about how currency affects economy.
GM Place, Vancouver, British Columbia.
Calgary is 19-18-2 away from home this year, but just played their best game in a month. The Canucks are a solid 22-12-5 at home but dropped two incredibly important games against very bad teams over the weekend.
What (to hate about the Canucks):
The obvious reason — They’re all that stand between the Calgary Flames and another division title. I find their position unacceptable.
Alain Vigneault — Do you remember the save Kipper made against Kyle Wellwood earlier this year? If not, here it is. Said Vigneault after that retardo stop: “Kyle got what he deserves. 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.”
I bolded and italicized the enraging part. God DAMN do I hate Vigneault. Smug prick.
Mats Sundin — I can’t decide if the whole Sundin saga ended up hilarious (9-17-26 in 38 games for the cap equivalent of $10 million! lol!) or sad (9-17-26 in 38 games for the cap equivalent of $10 million! 🙁 ). Either way, he sucks and that makes me happy.
The Sedin Twins — If only because it’s unlikely they’ll stay in Vancouver next year and will immediately become far less hateable. Goodbye Pony Boys, we will miss wishing you misfortune.
Ryan Kesler — In the offseason, he actually had the balls to say he aspired to be what Jarome Iginla is as a player. That’s like saying you aspire to be like Jesus Christ. It’s sacrelige and in poor taste. No one can be what Jarome Iginla is. Because he’s better than everyone.
Roberto Luogno — Man he’s very go.. well not lately. Forget I mentioned him here.
Vancouver fans — They’re as bad, stupid, ugly and offensive to the human race as Oilers fans. They just live in a much nicer city (though, in contrast with Edmonton, the same could be said of hockey fans in Fallujah).
Because this is the most important game of the entire season! Enjoy the game and belittle the Canucks and their fans in the comments section.