For some reason the Saddledome is a lot quieter. Fans from opposing teams easily overpower the home crowd during the course of the game. I suppose it should be expected. The Calgary Flames are among the worst teams in the NHL, they just lost to the worst team, and there’s no signs of things turning around. With the loss tonight Calgary sit closer to the bottom of the West division. Losing points to division rivals means getting back into the playoff pictures is getting dimmer as games move.
Tonight the battle of Alberta re-started. The game provided everything a fan could hope for. Big hits, scoring, great saves. Unfortunately for Calgary fans, it meant the same lousy mistakes. A weak goal by Kiprusoff, the usual penalties by Conroy and Huselius, and the lack of any real urgency for 60 minutes all combined to spell yet another loss for Calgary.
As the third oldest team in the NHL the Flames are certainly playing like they’re old. The slow sorry pace they put on for games does nothing to help their chances. Early on in this contest, just two minutes in, Calgary already behind. The team would never recover and merely showed glimpses of regular gritty hockey that fans have come to know and love.
Interestingly there have been few changes on the team. The third line has been stuck together for a few games, combing for 1 goal since the beginning of the season. The fourth line with vets Yelle and Nilson continue to ride the pine for no known reason (too slow?). The defence are still struggling. Phanuef is overplayed at just under 30 minutes a game and Sarich is being benched…..
Although a few bounces could have gone Calgary’s way to change the outcome, and Garon was hot all night, the Flames need to put together professional games for 60 minutes in order to win. RIght now it’s just not the case. Simple mistakes will cost this team big time.
Chances are Calgary won’t win their next game, so that’s six losses in a row. They’ll have another chance in Edmonton next Saturday so there’s lots of time to get things right and heal. No point throwing in the towel yet.
Worst Flame Tonight: Conroy, Hale.
Best Flames: Lombardi.