Postgame: Six Minute Drill

Apparently you can play six minutes of effective hockey an win a hockey game.  Okay, we’ll give them a little more than that (maybe ten minutes), but Tuesday’s 2-1 Calgary win over Edmonton really was the definition of finding a way to win.  The Flames were almost entirely mediocre but used a solid final ten minutes to first tie and then win round one of the Battle of Alberta.

What Happened

It was a rough start to the hockey game, with the Oilers getting a couple of opportunities right off the hop, blitzing Miikka Kiprusoff in the first few seconds.  After a bad Tim Jackman post-whistle penalty, it was an Edmonton powerplay goal that opened the scoring at 6:42 thanks to a rocket of a Tom Gilbert shot from the left point.  His first went roof on Kiprusoff and it was a score the Oilers took into the first intermission.  Scoring chances favored the visitors after one, and it started a trend of some really sloppy hockey from both sides.

The second period saw much of the same, with some really hard to watch stretches from both sides.  There was very little to get excited about, as both teams stuck to the outside for the majority of the frame, and Edmonton had the same lead heading into the third.

The third period really had the opportunity to get off the rails, as the Flames were slow to start their chasing game while they also took some penalties.  Curtis Glencross and Mark Giordano both took stick foul penalties in the third period, but the Calgary penalty kill was very good, as was Kiprusoff.  With the clock passing the fourteen minute mark, Calgary entered the zone effectively and kept possession long enough to find Jay Bouwmeester in the slot who sniped his first of the season.  All of a sudden the building got a little more animated, and it got to cheer again 1:29 later.  After Cory Sarich got a shot through on Devan Dubnyk, the rebound found it’s way to the side of the net and onto Alex Tanguay’s stick for his first of the season and a 2-1 Flames lead.  Kiprusoff would make another really good save on Anton Lander as time expired and the Flames held on for their first home win of the season.

One Good Reason…

…why the Flames won?  Because they played decent hockey for half a period, which is really all they needed to do on a night like this.  An effort like this wouldn’t fly in a game against the Red Wings or Sharks, but it kept them within a shot throughout.  They turned it on in the final minutes, scored twice, and rode a pretty solid goaltending performance to the win.

Red Warrior

As good as the Olli Jokinen line was tonight, I lean towards Miikka Kiprusoff.  Making 24 saves for the win, Kipper made some big stops while the Flames were killing penalties and he held the team within one goal for a lot of the third period.  I have had no real issues with his play so far this season, and he was a large factor in Calgary winning on this night.

Sum It Up

Pretty? No. Impressive? Not quite.  A win? Yes.  And a win is a win is a win is a win, especially knowing the spot the Flames are in right now.  2-3 is a whole lot better than 1-4 and they won the first of a six game homestand, regardless of how pretty it was.  This needs to be a stretch to make up ground for Calgary, so they started it with the right result.

  • ChinookArchYYC

    The Flames beat a bad, but up and coming team. Not much satisfaction in their play tonight, but they won so great. Now 98 more points to go for a playoff spot.

  • Truculence

    I’m actually a little relieved that the Flames are working out the rust at the beginning of the season, rather than mid-season. As Tanguay said, a lot of the guys aren’t at optimal level yet, but I believe they will be there quickly; or at least they better be, or else the playoffs will be a pipe dream. Playoffs!!! Did I say playoffs!!!! Playoffs!!!!!

    Anyhoo, did anybody else hear Dreger talking about Bourque being in play? If he is, I hope Feaster is thinking top 4 dman in return. Bouwmeester needs a real partner, not a hump on his back. We have too many wingers, anyways.

    • Puckmaster

      If its a top 4 d-man it better be to replace Bou. He has been worth nowhere near the $6M hes being payed.

      Bourque has scored yes, but I still wouldnt miss the guy. A consistent top 6 forward is whats needed in return

      • Sorry buddy, JBO is going nowhere even if we wanted to move him & it sounds like you do. He’s a salary dump to other GM’s & we will get absolutely no value for a top 4 dman(overpaid) who logs 25 tough minutes a night. We salary dumped Regehr with Kotalik, we cant afford to do this with JBO. Lets just hope he continues to elevate his game & scores more big goals like he did last night. I totally expect JBO to give us a hometown discount to 2.5Mill per when his contract expires. 🙂

  • Vintage Flame

    Great 5 minutes played by the Flames tonight. Once again Bouwmeester shows that if he does what he CAN do, he gets results.

    Flames really need to activate him more off the point there.

    Kiprusoff was fantastic tonight. I thought he really showed up to play and showed that the pre-game ceremony was legit. Congrats Miikka.. Here’s to #300

    • Vintage Flame

      I liked dressing P3L for this game. If you let Ben Eager go, he can be very effective at taking good players off their game. When Eager tried to goat Jackman into a fight, P3L did his job, and ensured Eager wasnt going to take a better player off the ice. That let Eager, Renney and the Oilers no he wasnt going to be effective and kept him off the ice altogether.

      I dislike designated enforcers too, but tonight it was effective. Jackman had a few great shifts in the 3rd on the forecheck that helped Calgary gain some momentum that helped turn the tide of the game

      • T&A4Flames

        Can someone explain why PL3 and Eager were given 10 min. misconducts for a bit of pushing…? Pretty pathetic call I would say.

        Overall, I thought Calgary carried the play but they tried to make far too many cute passes. It was frustrating watching them make a charge, gain the line and then dump it right on to one of the Oilers players sticks. In the 3rd on the 2 on 1 when Bourque tried to make a pass instead of shooting from the top of the circle; I think it was on the PK. He’s a shooter, shoot the puck, Bourque!!

        • Puckmaster

          I was at the game and sitting right by that faceoff. The conversation between Jackman, Eager, and PL3 started well before the drop of the puck. You knew something was going to happen.

          I think the ref didnt want to deal with it more than once

      • Couldnt have said it better Clay. The league is full of tough guys that are quite capable of throwing our better energy guys right off their game & even possibly injuring them. PL3 needs to nullify this & he did his job. I for one am happy he is on this team & even though he gets a lot of press box time, I bet if you ask the players, everyone finds comfort that a big tree trunk like him isnt far away.

  • I have to admit that the Oil really spit the bit on that one. The Flames had the better attack zone most of the night (by my eye anyway) but Kipper stood tall when he needed to.

    Way to not concentrate for about 7 minutes.

    Pretty boring game to watch though.

  • Super_Gio

    Excellent work by Jokinen last night. He seemed possessed out there, well deserved 1st star. Warrior was kipper for sure though nice Pat, he kept us alive!

  • I saw the game a little differently.

    The Flames were playing a possession-oriented game, working very hard to keep control of the puck.

    Normally that style of game would have generated more goals, but the Oilers held up well (except for short stretches), they were snakebit (Jokinen’s post) and the refs had brain damage.

    At the very least it gave the Oilers very few opportunities (at even-strength). This is a winning style of play, and I hope they continue.

  • The Flames had a lot more offensive zone time than the Oilers, but were rather terrible at doing anything with it. Ten ES chances through three periods against a bottom-10 club sitting on a lead is incredibly underwhelming. Add in playing in your own rink and the opposition on the second night of B2B and, frankly, Calgary should have run the Oil right of town.

    The game was a sloppy one all around. Bad transition and zone exits, give-aways everywhere, fumbling for the puck in scoring areas.

    Enjoy the W and move on.

  • Further to this, coaches and GMs like having the enforcer.

    You don’t need to worry about stunting his development in the press box, you don’t have to worry about the logistics of calling up players, and he practices daily with the team and knows the system. There is less risk of putting a kid in over his head not knowing where the coach wants him to be.

  • My thoughts:

    – we were lucky the Oil had played 3 times in 4 nights and we’d had 2 nights off. They looked tired and disorganized. When they were skating it was apparent how outmatched we were. Had the Oil been fresh we would have lost and that’s not very good to say when you’re playing a last plcae club.A win is a win, but I was certianly umipressed with how we got the 2 points.

    – RNH looked very umipressive last night. The whole team looked tired, but it was obvious he was struggling with the physical stuff. He may hit a wall after about 60 games.

    – the Oil have taken a definate step forward this season, but I don’t think they’re close to making the playoffs until next season.

    – agree that Olli was our most effective player.

    – my opinion that Tanguay is the true driving force on that top line was reinforced. One of the few guys who made things happen. Iginla would be lost without him.

    – agree that both teams were sloppy.

  • Reidja

    Seeing how Olli played during late last year and is playing early this year, gives me hope for Hagman. Maybe Sutter can brain-wash him into playing intelligent hockey too! Olli is our best forward by far – who would have guessed?

    Our power play is awful! Holy crap! And to that – why is Moss still centering the first line? Experiment failed. Since Stempniak has been holding his own with OG, it brings up the question of whether to re-insert Moss or find another spot… any other spot than between Iggy and Tangs.

    Having watched the Oil play a few this year, I was left wondering whether 1) we smothered them or 2) they just plain sucked. Either way, that was their poorest effort of the season (and they almost won!). If Sutter’s game plan was to play 0-0 hockey and eek out a late goal, mission almost accomplished. He looked pretty stoked after the game.

    My mind races with what we could turn Bourque into on the trade market… A decent centre? A number 2/3 d-man? A 1st round pick in 2012?