With talks melting down last week and the league cancelling games through to December 30th today, it’s hard to be up-beat or optimistic about NHL hockey at the moment. Like a lot of folks out there, the fanatic spirit in me that lives for the big saves, heavy hits and dirty dangles is slowly drowning beneath wave after wave of fuzzy CBA talk updates and cynical analyses of theatrical press conferences.
To remind myself of the good times and not sink into apathy completely, I recently took a tour around youtube for classic Flames highlights. I share them with you now.
Iginla is on the ice with Saprykin at the end of this because he simply decided not to change when his line did. Good thing too.
Of course 2004 is going to pop up more than once in this list. When the Canucks tied the game with a few seconds left in the third of game 7, I was completely convinced the Flames were due for another first round, gut-punch loss (as had been their custom in the early-mid ’90s). Instead, the eliminator went to work…
Also, notice Iginla spin away from coverage out of the corner and then bust towards the net despite Ohlund grabbing onto his jersey.
One more from the Flames last epic run. Although that year was full of incredible moments and unlikely wins, the Gelinas OT goal against Detroit probably elicits the most sentiment from me now. A friend of mine attended the game and called me a few moments after the goal. The arena was so loud, I couldn’t hear a single word he said, even though he was shouting into the phone.
It didn’t matter.
Cory Sarich gets a lot of flack from Flames fans these days. And, in some ways, is justifiable. Still, he was a pretty good defender for a long time and the dude could always hit like a truck. The Flames ended up losing this series to the Sharks, but this obliteration of Marleau along the boards was the start of an unlikely comeback in the game in question.
I could likely build an entire post of Kipper highlights, but for now we’ll settle for this "save of the year" candidate.
I think it’s fair to say Gio’s goal vs the Coyotes in 2010 stands as the best individual effort by a Flame in the last two years. Never get tired of watching it.
And now Giordano doing the other thing he does best: humiliate Dustin Brown.
I was in attendance in Ottawa for this Phaneuf destruction of Denis Hamel, which is why it sticks in my mind above numerous other Phaneuf hits from over the years.
Backs sure could have used a goal like this last year.
And now a nod or two to the future. Above, Sven Baertschi’s three NHL goals from last season and below Johnny Gaudreau’s outstanding highlight reel marker for BC from last season.
And finally, one more step back into the past. I was 11 when Lanny scored this goal in the cup finals, but I still remember the moment as clear as if it happened yesterday.