Postgame: Typical

The good news coming from Calgary’s 2-1 loss in Nashville on Tuesday saw the two teams equal their goal total from the prior two meetings combined.  The bad news came from the fact the Flames saw their three game win streak come to an end, as Colin Wilson’s third period powerplay goal being the difference in a game that more than 80 shots fired between the two squads.

What Happened

A fairly tepid first period from the visitors saw a couple highlight reel saves from Miikka Kiprusoff, who was key in making sure the Flames were within a goal when the buzzer went.  Nashville’s first goal came at 11:43 of opening period, with Brian McGrattan putting the puck towards the net and Matt Halischuk being able to bat the puck out of mid-air and past Kiprusoff for his sixth of the season.  Shots were 18-6 in favour of the Preds with scoring chances finishing 8-4.

Things turned rather noticeably in the second period, with the Flames ready to go to kick things off.  Racking up a few scoring chances in the first six minutes or so, Calgary tied the game on a pretty goal from Curtis Glencross.  He’d walk through the Nashville defense and backhand a shot upstairs for his ninth of the season at 6:12 and a 1-1 tie.  But after a good start, things would start to tilt back Nashville’s way and shots would finish even at 17 with chances knotted at eight a piece.

After two unsuccessful power plays in the prior 40 minutes, Nashville would make good on their third early in the final frame.  With Brendan Morrison off for interference, Colin Wilson would bury a rebound off a Craig Smith shot at 3:31, putting the Flames down a goal for the second time on the evening.  They’d rack up some scoring chances down the stretch, but the Predators did what they do: protect leads in whatever fashion they can.  Pekka Rinne made a few stops, the Flames put a few chances wide, and Nashville walked away with a hard earned 2-1 win.

One Good Reason…

…why the Flames lost?  Overall, a fairly lukewarm effort against a beatable opponent.  Allowing the offensively challenged Predators to fire 45 shots on you, generating 21 chances in the process, is not the effort Calgary needed to kick off a road trip.  Kiprusoff had a very strong night making impressive saves on a number of ten bell opportunities but despite a few strong stretches of play, the Flames couldn’t help him out.

Red Warrior

With an honorable mention going to Kipper, I’ve gotta give it to Matt Stajan.  For the most part, the bottom six forwards carried their weight while the likes of Iginla, Glencross, and Morrison got crushed playing against the higher end Nashville forwards.  Stajan was on the ice for six even strength scoring chances and he helped drive his line with Tim Jackman and Tom Kostopoulos, and looked just fine when he was moved up the pecking order.  Likely his best game of the season.

Sum It Up

It wasn’t a terrible effort for Calgary, but against a beatable team you’re chasing in the Western Conference standings, you need a better showing than the one we saw Tuesday.  Allowing the more potent Lightning 43 shots on Thursday night wouldn’t be advisable, so I can’t imagine the Flames are overly happy with what happened in Nashville, regardless of how close the score was.

      • He makes too much money yes, but he can still consistently beat other teams 4th line. I thought he looked quite good actually and I didn’t notice that many turnovers. Like usual the Stempniak line looked to be the best one out there.

    • Truculence

      He does suck. I counted a number of turnovers by him, and there is no way in hell his effort was more pivotal to the score than Kippers’ was. If that had been Karrlson in there tonight, this game would have been over in the first.

      Not the kind of game you want to kick off the upcoming stretch here. 10 of the next twelve are on the road. My prediction: Flames will be 6 games below .500 when all is said and done.

      Sigh…..you can only play Colorado and Edmonton so many times a year.

    • Truculence

      Hahaha. Oh god, that’s just downright ironic coming from an Oilers fan. I’ll impute the spelling mistake to Edmonton’s stellar educational system 😉

      Definition of hypocrisy: when an Oilers fan denounces another team as horrible.

      Paradox: When an Oilers fan rhapsodizes about how the Oilers are gonna dominate the NHL by having the honor of picking the first overall pick year after year.

      • Truculence

        Ok , lets be real . The flames have beat my oil 3 times this year . Each time being the second game on back to backfor the oilers .Good for the flamers . Wow good job . I’ll admit the oil have stunk for years . And yes your flames may finish in 9th again . But face it ,your time is coming. Take kipper and Iggy out of the lineup and ouch. What is kipper gonna need to play ?another 72 games . Face it fLamar fans . Most people that have a clue would gladly take the oilers than the flames. All my ranting aside…….check the standings .

        • Truculence

          I`d love to reply, but your grammar and punctuation preclude a response. However, when you say `your time is coming,` I assume you mean to watch the Oilers pick first overall again. And I apologize to you personally as a Flames fan that our team had the audacity to best you in back-to-back scenarios. Indeed, it really detracts from the 10 times the Oilers were bested by their southern neighbors following periods of respite.

          Lol

        • Truculence

          I`d love to reply, but your grammar and punctuation preclude a response. However, when you say `your time is coming,` I assume you mean to watch the Oilers pick first overall again. And I apologize to you personally as a Flames fan that our team had the audacity to best you in back-to-back scenarios. Indeed, it really detracts from the 10 times the Oilers were bested by their southern neighbors following periods of respite over the last three years.

          Lol

        • Truculence

          I`d love to reply, but your grammar and punctuation preclude a response. However, when you say `your time is coming,` I assume you mean to watch the Oilers pick first overall again. And I apologize to you personally as a Flames fan that our team had the audacity to best you in back-to-back scenarios. Indeed, it really detracts from the 10 times the Oilers were bested by their southern neighbors following periods of respite over the last three years.

          Lol

        • Vintage Flame

          Ok , lets be real . The flames have beat my oil 3 times this year . Each time being the second game on back to backfor the oilers.

          Are you kidding me? Are you really going to roll with that lame ass excuse when the Oil have won 2 of the last 20 games against the Flames? Were they ALL on the 2nd half of back-to-backs?

          Weak dude… Very very weak.

          • Vintage Flame

            Also dont forget it is the youthful, hungry juggernaut Oilers against the old, over the hill grey balls Flame team. I guess the Oil kiddies just arent fit enough to compete in back to backs in the NHL.

        • T&A4Flames

          Yea, and we have been on the way up and you guys are on the way down. You will get another top 5 pick (probably not 1st overall, nice improvement!) and we will get something between 11 and 15… unfortunately.

          • Jeff Lebowski

            Well, the thing is, you take Kipper & Iggy out of our line up, we will get pieces that we dont have to finish in 30th place in consecutive years to get a youthful exciting team. When Oil had their fire sale, they got flea market prices for what they were selling.

      • MC Hockey

        Lol, no it’s just flat out embarassing that you are below Edmonton in the standings.

        Stand up like a man, quit trying to make yourselves feel better, and just take it plain and simple.

        The Flames had there decade of chances and they didn’t produce. Time to step a side and let your provincial rivals take the cue.

        Sit in the basement like the little poopy bum that you are and shut it.

        that is all.

        Canucks are better than you and Edmonton.

  • loudogYYC

    Steinberg, I rarely disagree with what you say here, but Brodie was the reason lots of plays were actually plays.

    Stajan tried hard which he should, but his good games have A LOT to do with Kostopoulos and Jackman more than anything.

    In the end, none of those 3 should be the Red Warrior when you play against one of the best 3 goalies in the league. Maybe the scorers will wake up on Thursday and we’ll have ourselves another Calgary-Tampa dogfight!

      • loudogYYC

        I’m just saying Brodie stood out more as a player that pushed the team towards a goal/win.

        Excuses on Stajan aren’t really necessary, he’s clearly a mediocre player at best. Jackman isn’t having an awesome year either, but because his salary is 15% of Stajans, expectations are lower.

        A for effort on Stajans game tonight, and yes, probably his best of the 20 something he’s played. But Red warrior?

  • Vintage Flame

    I’d like to point out what an amazing play Brodie made at the end of the game while on the 6-4.

    When he broke his stick, but still had the presence of mind to jump up and glove the puck, then drop it to the ground and kick it over as to NOT get a gloved ahead call… Wow.. That is just a great presence of mind when the game is on the line.

    Good for him, and good that he is improving with every game.

    • Agree 100% VF. It’s been quite some time since I’ve seen any Flame be as useful down a goal in the last minute of a game. Keeping the puck in the offensive zone with a smart, SMART, play with no stick was an excellent move.

      As for the whole, Flames-Oilers rivalry, I shall quoteth the Simpsons on this one:

      “It’s just another chapter in the pointless rivalry between Springfield and Shelbyville. They built a mini mall, so we built a bigger mini mall. They made the world’s largest pizza, so we burned down their City Hall.”

      In this case, we built the Cup contending team in 03-04, then EDM did it in 05-06. Then, Edmonton got a bunch of number 1 picks by tanking, so we burnt down Rexall Place… or something.

    • BobB

      +1

      Of all the “kids” we’ve had going through the rotation in the back end in the last 3-4years, Brodie has been the best of them, and I’ve been very impressed with Smith.

      Both have earned a permanent spot on this team AFAIC.

      Brodie needs to work on some of the defensive elements, but generally he is very good. Right side of the puck, good reads, good depth at the blue line.

      The kid is pretty good.

  • Truculence

    Uhhh..I really don`t know how that got posted three times, but emphatic repetition may be the only way to divest Oilers fans of their paranoia and megalomania.

    Taken care of Olli – VF

  • Truculence

    Stajan wasn’t a bad player in TO but he seems to be pretty easy to knock down. Maybe he should work on his fitness and bulk up a bit. The team is stuck with him

  • Jeff Lebowski

    You know when Stajan was traded to Calgary he had something like 41 pts in 55 games.

    The physical talent is there. I honestly see a guy playing his role well and let’s face it he’s not suited for a crash bang role but he does it without complaining.

    The results are just not happening for him and there have been times when he’s been on the ice with more offensive players (although very limited). The guy just can’t buy a goal. Last night I saw one really great chance (he was in the quiet ice and got the pass from 16 but didn’t one time it) and another in front of their net (he got tied up and was just late to get his stick free). No one scores on all their chances but Stajan somehow has to in order to make people change the narrative. It’s unfair.

    It all comes down to confidence especially with skill guys. The narrative that’s been slapped on him has been him having to prove:
    -He’s worth the Dion trade
    -He’s worth the contract
    -He’s an NHL player (he’s been benched a lot)
    Having to prove you don’t suck is a terrible way to play and almost impossible to play with confidence.

    Aside from that, Kipper was again, sublime. I didn’t fault him on any of their goals (the same can’t be said for his team mates) and he made some incredibly athletic saves that no one else would make. He is the best. If Kipper played for Phoenix he’d have like a .950+ SV%.

    After a slow start the Flames came back, because of Kipper they had a strong chance to win. With the way they are playing recently they are able to generate chances off the rush and off the cycle. They didn’t start quick enough and they couldn’t cash in on the opportunities they created tonight.

    That’s the difference now with early in the season. They are generating chances in different ways by controlling and possessing the puck. They will win more than lose if they keep it up.

  • Jeff Lebowski

    almost christmas and 500 hockey, guess thats all to be expected of this terrible lot. not alot of hope for the remainder of the season. hopefully the true rebuild brings better results.