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Coleman talks Flames consistency before big matchup against Edmonton Oilers

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Photo credit:Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Jeff Middleton
1 month ago
The Calgary Flames are entering a significant matchup against the Edmonton Oilers in the third installment of the Battle of Alberta this season, and the theme from players around the Flames organization, significantly forward Blake Coleman, heading into the game is consistency.
If Calgary wants to make the playoffs, they need to be able to win three or four games in a row, just as they have multiple times this season, and then continue to win instead of going back to losing multiple games following it.
“I think we’ve shown that we can hang with the best in this league all year,” Coleman said, speaking to the media after Friday’s optional practice. “The thing we’ve struggled with is consistency, so we’ve got to find a way to put three, four, five together in a row and really get ourselves up into the race where we want to be, and nobody better to beat than your rival across the province.”
This game will be the second of two games in a back-to-back for the Oilers, suffering a 4-2 loss to the Minnesota Wild that saw Filip Gustavsson make 41 saves on 43 Edmonton shots. Leon Draisaitl and Zach Hyman were the goal scorers, but the team could not find a way to grab a lead in the game.
Of course, coming off a frustrating loss like that (and add in the fact that Edmonton is 4-4-1 since their 16-game win streak) could mean trouble for a Flames team that doesn’t have many wins to show for themselves in this rivalry as of late. But, it’s the perfect time to take advantage of a team that could very well be fatigued after an aggravating game and a night of travel, albeit not very far, and a team that the Flames need to prove themselves against if they are as confident as they appear to be that the playoffs are still a viable option.
“If you want to go to the playoffs and you want to go on a run in the playoffs, it’s a team you’re most likely going to face at some point,” Coleman said. “It’s time for us to start winning games in this rivalry, and it’s been frustrating losing to a team that we feel like we can beat. It was a tight game last time in this building, but we came up short, and, like I said, we’ve got to find ways to beat this team. If we want to go anywhere meaningful, this is the team we have to get by.”
No matter where the Battle of Alberta is being played or what the schedule looks like beforehand, there is bound to be fireworks and exciting energy between the two teams and the two fanbases.
For Flames fans, the inconsistency has (understandably) led many to have overreactions at times and journey down the path of the two extremes, and it appears the players have taken notice of how fans have reacted over the course of the year.
“I think the reactions are a little steeper the way we’re playing, where people want to burn it all down after four games, and then they think we’re going to the Cup Final tomorrow after another four,” Coleman said. “But for us, like I said, we’ve got to find ways to win eight of ten, just more consistency than we’ve had, and we’re searching for the answers. We certainly know what our game looks like when we’re playing our best and how to beat the best teams, but it’s just whether we can throw it out on the ice every night.”
A win on a Saturday night in Calgary against your biggest rival could be a huge boost to the team’s confidence that they can still salvage something from this season. However, suffering a loss could be a major detriment and cement the idea in the minds of Flames fans, media, and possibly even management (if it wasn’t held firm in there to begin with) that it’s not worth shooting for the playoffs at this point, even if you continue to move players out, which feels like an inevitability. Either way, buckle up, folks, because this is bound to be a fun one.
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