They say at the moment when death is imminent there is a sort of calm that comes over the mind, that is liberating and can be described as uninhibeted freedom.
One has to wonder how enraged Flames fans were tonight, even though the outcome was expected. What would be even more interesting is how it long it took those same fans to experience that numbness, or that wave of liberation as to what exactly is left for this team and where exactly they are going.
Justin titled the FGD: Choose Your Own Path, and I suspect he was making more reference to the fanbase than the team itself. The Flames seem stuck in a path that they can no longer determine, they no longer have that freedom, rather they are on the wild run… kind of like a runaway train?
If you’re still reading this, then let’s see how it all played out…
I don’t think anyone should have been surprised that the Flames came out in this one looking extremely tentative tonight. For the first half of the period, they seemed to be afraid to take any chances in fear that it might cost them on the scoreboard.
Instead, they would play it safe, trying to make the perfect pass which in turn cost them valuable scoring chances because they held the puck far too long. They were fortunate to get their first scoring chance just 17 seconds into the game and then wouldn’t see another for ten minutes.
A pretty low event period that almost got interesting when Bouwmeester walked into a slap shot from the blueline, that didn’t quite find its way into the net. Almost though.. almost.
When you don’t make things happen, things happen against you; and tonight would be no different. At 16:56, Jared Boll (*sigh*) would wire that sniper like slap shot that he is oh so known for, over the shoulder of a helpless Miikka Kiprusoff. In his defense though, he probably wasn’t expecting TJ Brodie to cough up the puck in front of him, or for his teammates to sit and watch as, yes, Jared Boll put the Jackets up 1-0.
The Flames edged Columbus 3-2 in scoring chances, but in fairness both of the Jackets chances were higher in quality than any of Calgary’s. Calgary went 65% in the faceoff circle and still got out-shot 9-7, but that’s what happens when you are tentative and are looking for the "perfect" play all the time.
Not sure what was said in the dressing room during the intermission, or who did the talking, but someone needed to respond in the second period.
When you need someone to answer the bell, you rarely have to look past Curtis Glencross. Undoubtedly, Calgary’s best line once again to the reins of leadership with Stempniak doing the majority of the work and Glenx doing what #Scorface does best… pumping up that shooting percentage.
For the next 11 minutes, the Flames would bask in the glow that was their tying feat. And then reality would have them come crashing down harder than Jared Boll running Kiprusoff for the third time of the night.
Over the course of a a minute and fifteen seconds, starting at the 13:05 mark, Columbus would put three consecutively passed Kipper, stomping on the hearts and most likely any hope that was held by any Flames fan out there.
The start of the third wasn’t pretty as the team came out looking like they were short-handed. Let’s face it the team’s play at even strength has seemed short-handed at the best of times. If the 3 goals in 1:15 wasn’t enough, Kipprusoff looked absolutely shell-shocked after the opening five minutes.
It would take nothing short of a Herculean feat to dig themselves out of this one. Since the Hockey Gods are clearly not behind the Flames, there would be no Herculean anything….
I took an intermission of my own until I was snapped back to consciousness when Colton Gillies extended the deficit to four. At this point, the clock couldn’t run out fast enough….
Why the Flames Lost…
I’m not sure how many different ways we can go over this. Night after night, game after game, it’s the same old song and dance.
Tonight I am proud to say we are bringing back the "Red Warrior". It’s just too bad that for the second night in a row., no one really deserves it.
However, given that we are bringing back the warrior honours, I can’t let it debut with no one.
So I’m going with Curtis Glencross tonight. He got the Flames only goal and has been the one guy on this team that has much of anything left to offer.
Now unlike an earlier misconception that was blatantly taken out of context on twitter earlier today, I am not saying that anyone on this team doesn’t care or isn’t just as troubled about the losses piling up faster than PETA can protest the latest videogame. What I am saying is that night in and night out, Curtis has come to play for this team.
For the past month.. hell, for the past 4 years, fans have taken their turns at throwing pot-shots at various players on the team; from Iginla right down to Kiprusoff. The one name I can honestly say I’ve never seen thrown around when it comes to effort, is Glencross.
For that reason, and twitter be damned… Tonight’s Red Warrior is Curtis Glencross.
Scoring Chance Summary
|Away||1||0:17||Cervenka shot (PP)||18||13||6||33||72||10||20||40||4||7||34||4v5|
|Away||2||14:08||Iginla in close||18||19||71||20||33||72||12||13||40||4||7||34||5v5|
|Home||2||6:05||Foligno slot goal||18||19||71||7||51||72||13||17||40||5||26||34||5v5|
|Home||2||3:44||Johnson high slot (PP)||16||18||71||7||51||72||20||40||4||5||34||5v4|
|Away||2||1:08||Cervenka in close||9||24||40||6||47||72||10||24||12||4||7||34||5v5|
|Home||3||17:02||Atkinson in close||10||13||11||7||51||72||10||24||12||4||26||34||5v5|
|Away||3||16:00||Cammalleri high slot||9||24||40||6||47||72||13||17||40||5||7||34||5v5|
Blue Jackets Player Summary
Flames Scoring Summary
Blue Jackets Period Summary Scoring Chances
|Period||Totals||EV||PP||5v3 PP||SH||5v3 SH|
Flames Period Summary Scoring Chances
|Period||Totals||EV||PP||5v3 PP||SH||5v3 SH|
Sum It Up
I’m going to keep this one short tonight. Here is the hard facts of reality.
The biggest thing that plagues this organization is probably the hardest slap in it’s face. This team just isn’t good. It’s not that it’s not as good as they thought, they just aren’t good… period.
When the Flames are fortunate to catch a tired team that is is forced to play their back-ups on the second night of back-to-backs, they still have to be at their best and have a mistake free night to maybe pull out the "big win". However if the Calgary Flames are unfortunate enough to face a team, any team, that has it together and is on their game, then they just don’t have a chance.
That might be tough to hear, but I’m sure it’s even tougher for the boys to come to realize. But like I said before once the wildness of that realization comes to pass, there will be that relief, that calmness, that freedom to finally focus on what they need to do.
It’s not going to be a fun plane ride home, but at least they are going home. There is no doubt now, that for Murray, Ken and Jay.. it’s decision time.
Flames next opponent will be the St. Louis Blues on Sunday at 6:00 pm. Catch the game on SNET-W and the Fan 960.