FGD #35: The Panic Button (8pm MT; CBC)

The Calgary Flames (17-15-2) have lost 7 games in a row. Their opponents tonight, the Vancouver Canucks (), have lost 5 games in a row.

A streak will end tonight.

I really hope it’s Calgary’s streak, because I am sick of writing the same “The Flames played well but something went bad and they lost!” game story. You can try and dress it up, but fundamentally we’re experiencing the exact opposite of October and November, and it’s just more fun to analyze wins than it is to dissect a string of very similar losses.

Is it time for us to crack each others’ heads open and feast on the goo inside? We’re not sure. We hope not. But with a loss against a reeling Vancouver Canucks team that is having a similarly tough go of it, it may be time to hit the proverbial panic button.

(For a view from the other side, visit our chums over at Canucks Army)

THE FLAMES

They’ve lost seven in a row. Likely we’ll see some line-up changes, but they’re not skating today. Keep an eye on Daily Faceoff, who have last night’s lines (seen below) and will have updated rosters as the day goes forward.

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The Flames were alright last night at home, but now they’re (a) tired, (b) dejected and (c) playing a Vancouver Canucks team that has had a lot of success against them at Rogers Arena AND will be desperate to get back in the win column. As for the Flames – they’re just desperate to get some points on the board and turn this streak around before it hits Oilers territory.

I’d expect Karri Ramo to start, but that’s just me guessing based upon back-to-back games.

THE CANUCKS

Vancouver has lost six straight and have arguably been worse than the Flames during that stretch. Here’s lines from their last game via Daily Faceoff.

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I would expect Ryan Miller to start, but that’s a guess.

These teams last met in the season opener in Calgary, but this is their first meeting in Vancouver this season. On-paper, the Canucks are the superior team. However, the Flames have surprised them before.

SUM IT UP

Via Hockeyfights.com

Nobody wants to enter the Christmas Break on a losing streak, but it’s likely one of these teams will. Calgary has lost seven straight. Vancouver has lost five. This is the opposite of a clash of titans. This is two desperate teams clashing for points that they both really, really need.

I expect a tight-checking game, filled with two nervous groups desperately trying not to mess things up for themselves.

Care to see what those Canucks fans are saying about tonight, click here.



  • Burnward

    I don’t understand why everyone thinks this is okay. At no point is it “okay” to lose 8 games in a row (7 in regulation, tied a record set back in 74/75) whether we’re in Year 2 of the rebuild or not. Something has to happen and if we continue to let it slide nothing will change.

    Hartley hasn’t done anything to spark the team. “We need to simplify our game” and “We’re gripping our sticks too tight” is clearly not the problem. How about putting Mony and Gaudreau together? Or *gasp* splitting up Brodano? Or seeing how Potter does instead of Engelland, who when possessing the puck in the attacking zone promptly puts it over the glass so the faceoff comes outside?

    I’m not expecting them to win the Cup or anything. But a little more effort and a little less “Oh, we played fine but because the advanced stats say so we are bound to start getting goals” to that I say YEAH! Into our own net!

    • Grant

      The fact is Calgary played over their heads for one third of the season . Now they are not sneaking up on anyone. Look at the first line and second line . Do you think these are legitimate first and second lines. Their corsi stats are near the bottom of the league and the goaltending is back where it should be. This is not a surprise that they have fallen . They may be a hard working team but not super talented.

  • RKD

    I hope the Flames stop the streak, if they could do it against the Canucks it would make it all the more sweeter. If they keep playing well they are due for a win. Before their shooting percentage was way above league average, now it happens to be way below. They do need to stop playing a perimeter game, Josh Jooris isn’t going to score from difficult angles. He’s got to drive to the net north-south and get some greasy goals.

  • FeyWest

    Just need to get back to basics…. Tight in shots, front net presence, and shots…. That hit the net! We can do it just gotta get through this scorers block.

  • Cool Story, Brodie!!!

    Man, that stings. I was on the edge of my seat. I thought we went into overtime with all the momentum and the first lazy shot we throw into their zone turns into a wide open shot in our slot for tanev….WHOSE FRICKEN BIRTHDAY’S TODAY!!!!!…….bad luck I geuss..or pdo, or whatever…..I don’t care anymore
    * storms into the basement that his mom still rents him even though he’s 34 and she’s like”Jesus Christ!!!”

  • Cool Story, Brodie!!!

    The Score is making fun of us. We had 6 men on the ice (which shouldn’t happen if anyone is even remotely paying attention, let alone twice a game) and still somehow gave up an odd man rush. PANIC PANIC PANIC

    • Kevin R

      Take a [email protected]#*ing pill buddy. This team is 35 games into year 2 of a rebuild. You are acting like we have a maxed out payroll loaded with established vets who should be contending. We are actually enjoying meaningful games. Losing sucks but the team is competing. Trades won’t happen until Jan/Feb. Let’s see what happens until then.

  • Colin.S

    Has anyone else noticed over the last several games that NO ONE is covering the right point on the power play? I’ve seen it at least 5 or 6 times over the last few games. Someone passes back to the right point and no one is there and puck leaves the zone and kills over a quarter of the power play never mind trying to regain the zone.

  • Grant

    Oh, and what was that pussy s*** in the last 15 seconds of the game? Hiding and crying in our own end, waiting for the clock to run down? That is some seriously weak and pathetic crap. Vancouver scoring right away was our karma for being scared to attack. So, so, SO disappointed and disgusted.