In a game where the Calgary Flames were hoping to snap a season long five game losing skid, they got a special gift along with accomplishing their goal. Jarome Iginla scored goal number 500 at 8:33 of the third period in a game where all the scoring came in the final 20 minutes; all in all, a fairly decent effort from a depleted Calgary lineup on a special night at the Scotiabank Saddledome.
We had a fairly low event first two period of play, with Minnesota really running things in the first five minutes, racking up a few quality scoring chances. But some key saves from Miikka Kiprusoff kept this game scoreless, with Minnesota winning the scoring chance count 5-3.
The second was much the same, with the chances slanting exactly the same way in Minnesota’s favour, and not surprisingly, we had a close game after 40 minutes of play.
The third period saw Calgary open the scoring just after the two minute mark, with Lance Bouma finishing off a Lee Stempniak rush at 2:02. Bouma’s first ever NHL goal was a nice precursor to Iginla’s 500th at 8:33, seeing his shot bank off Marek Zidlicky and Mikko Koivu on it’s way into the net. You could tell Jarome didn’t recognize the feat when it happened, until Curtis Glencross let him know that, yes indeed, the 500 mark had been reached. The entire team came off the bench for the moment, which was something pre-approved by the league prior to tonight. Glencross’s 17th at 11:15 on the powerplay gave Calgary the insurance they’d need, helping to cover off Dany Heatley’s lone Wild marker at 13:41.
One Good Reason…
…why the Flames won? They really forced the issue in the final frame. There were times when they had things ran by Minnesota, and had some good spans of hockey where things were pretty even. But scoreless after 40, Calgary did a nice job taking the bull by the horns from the very get-go in the third. Kent had Minnesota with just two scoring chances prior to going down by three, meaning the Flames really were the team driving things in the third.
Sum It Up
It snaps a five game losing skid, so a win is a win for the Calgary Flames. But the most important thing is Jarome becomes the second member of the organization to reach 500 goals, and the first to score all of them with this franchise. Overall, Jarome is the 42nd player to reach the 500 mark and he joins a rather illustrious group to do it all with the same team. I remember his first and I was in the building for his 500th, so it was pretty cool to see it happen tonight.