Shoot Out at the OK Corral

Calgary bounced back early in this one from yet another poor road trip. The fans are getting ancy and early on the Flames didn’t disappoint. In fact, they jumped to a 2-0 lead in the 1st period courteousy of goals from Phaneuf and Langkow.

The only difference in the this game compared to others was Kiprusoff. He made some solid breakaway saves early in the game that was the difference maker. As usual, the Flames fell asleep. Calgary cannot play for 60 minute games anymore. That little bit of a problem will cost them a playoff berth if they don’t put their crap together soon. Things were looking all fine and dandy but then came the second period.

The second period rolled around Calgary took the night off, at least defensively. San Jose scored 4 goals in the second, however, in a strange turn, Calgary scored right after, one time 8 seconds after, to tie the game at 4. That was a PP goal off a Hamrlik shot (for his third assist of the night). Fact is, we can score, fact is, we can’t defend.

Luckily Langkow got an insurance goal with his second of the game. Tanguay did some great work down low and Iginla fed Langkow a pass in the slot. A neat deflection was enough to beat Nabokov who had an average night. Nilson would later get the empty netter.

List of Flames Players Who Are Defensive Liabilities

Warrner must be hurt, he’s terrible on D these days. Blown coverage, bad decisions.

Giordano. I still say play Zyuzin, this guy can move the puck sure, but he can’t take his man properly.

Nilson. Absolutely poor defensive abilities lately. The past 3 games he’s been a liability.

Conroy. The past 6 games his defensive game as been the worst of any Flames. He consistent causes goals. Craig Conroy causes at least 1 goal per game in the last 6 because of bad defensive coverage

Iginla. Right behind Conroy is Iginla. The guy doesn’t work anymore in the D zone and just floats like Gretzky. He doesn’t cover his man and only looks for the breakaway. Yes he has 3 points tonight, but they didn’t come from defensive zone coverage. Albeit, he got the job done tonight offensively.

20 seconds into the third Iginla would net his 30th of the season off a nice goal from a Tanguay rush. The third period would see more Sharks domination, only this time, they couldn’t capitalize on some good chances. You have to wonder what system the Flames adopt defensively because they are losing battles all the time against any team.

Notes: Godard may factor in the lineup Monday, but not tonight. Primeau put on the visor after a fight in the first.