The Calgary Flames finally put it together–just kidding. One team was going to get their third win of the season, and lucky for us it was the Flames. This isn’t to suggest the Flames dominated the Coyotes in every aspect of the game all game, but they did manage their second home win.
The first two periods weren’t especially special. McCarty tried in vain to beat up two Coyotes, one of them Laraque…. Props to McCarty for starting a physical game and lead by example also sticking up for his teammates. (Phaneuf destroyed Comrie at the end of the third on a hit, Scatchard comes in to take a Phanuef who’s looking the other way and Mccarty jumps over the body pile to punch Scatchard in the head….) We have those videos in the Flames gallery.
Other than some physical play the Flames were seeking to get their feet wet in the game of sound defense and average offense. The Flames opened the scoring in the first when Kobasew and Huselius each got power play goals. A good sign perhaps? However, another late goal in the 1st gave Phoenix some life before the intermission.
A boring second period was broken open when Amonte scored his first short handed goal on a 2-0 against Morrison (who was then pulled to give Joseph a chance to let in 3 goals.) this play probably deflated the Coyotes as the Flames truly dominated after midway through the second. The Coyotes may have made things interested, again at the end of the period, but Kiprusoff made two dazzling saves to keep the score 3-1 going into the third.
What was perhaps the best component of the Flames game was the penalty kill. The Flames killed all their penalties and managed a short handed tally and a penalty shot (which was missed by Langkow a la Flames style). The third period was when things broke open. Smelling blood from a tired Phoenix team, Iginla, Nilson, and Hamrlik all tallied goals. The Flames finally looked like a team that was in control, it only took a tired and crappy NHL team to accomplish it.
I thought some positives to take from the game was how the bench was used. Phanuef didin’t play 2 minute shifts or 30 minutes a game. A nice ‘rolling of the lines’ was done by Playfair which definately showed in the third period. Cons from the game? Tanguay was yet again very quiet. Actually the whole first line was a bit quiet……Next up, Saturday against Nashville, and no, it’s not on TV.