It was a game where Calgary probably deserved a better fate, especially the way they dominated things in the third period, but in the end, they’d fall 3-2 in a shootout in Anaheim. Calgary erased a 2-0 deficit in the third period to force extra time, and once you get to overtime and a shootout, roll a dice or flip a coin…the Ducks come away with the two points.
A fairly even first period saw Anaheim score the first goal of the evening, thanks to Lubomir Visnovsky. It started with a nice drag move from Ryan Getzlaf at his own blueline; once he entered the offensive zone, he left off for Visnovsky who made a move of his own before wiring a laser of a shot past Calgary goalie Henrik Karlsson, good for his fourth of the season. Shots ended 11-8 and the Ducks took a lead into the second.
Anaheim would extend their lead at 16:29 of the second period, thanks to Dan Sexton who drove the net hard and took a pass from Brandon McMillan to cash his second of the season, and things looked rather bleak for the visitors. The Flames controlled most of the second period in terms of possession, but didn’t convert enough of that time with the puck into scoring chances; overall, shots favored Calgary again 13-7.
You knew there’d be a push in the third period, and that’s exactly what there was. The Flames had slowly tilted this game and seemed to be really clicking at times in the second period, so you wondered what would happen in the final frame. The Ducks had surrendered third period, two goal leads in their previous two games, so you knew they were fragile, and the Flames took advantage of it. Calgary scored on their sixth powerplay of the game at 6:58 thanks to Olli Jokinen; his slap shot from just high of the right circle beat Jonas Hiller to put the Flames within one, and then the push really began. Calgary was all over the Ducks for the rest of the period and tied it at 13:25; a Mark Giordano point shot would tip off Jarome Iginla’s stick and then David Moss’s stick and past Hiller; Moss would get his third and we were off to OT.
The overtime period was all Anaheim, thanks to a Brendan Morrison hooking penalty, but they wouldn’t score, so off to a shootout. Anaheim got goals from Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry to come away with the win; Calgary’s only goal would come on a nice move from Alex Tanguay.
One Good Reason…
…why the Flames lost? This is a tough one, because I really did like Calgary’s effort…but they lost because they fell down 2-0, plain and simple. The job they did slowly tilting things was impressive, and their third period was extremely impressive; but they were only able to tie it, and couldn’t come away with a win in regulation, although they were very, very close. Once you’re in OT and a shootout…it’s a coin flip, it really is.
Jay Bouwmeester played 34:24 and was a tower of power for the Calgary Flames, I loved his game once again. He ended up with four blocked shots, and was extremely, extremely sound all the way around. I know this guy gets a lot of flack for the contract he signed, but in my mind, he’s Calgary’s best player right now. Another great, great game from #4.
Sum It Up
I don’t really know what to say about this one. The Flames certainly deserved to tie this game, and you can certainly make the case they deserved a better fate overall. But they only earned the one point, and they need to look at this upcoming three game home stand to try and string wins together. What’s worse, the Ducks, Avalanche, Oilers and Stars all gained two points on this night, and the Flames find themselves dead last in the Western Conference.