The Calgary Flames are fast becoming the worst team in the NHL and they did very little to pick up their game. Some changes were made to the forward lines that did spark some intensity, but overall, poor defense, poor goaltending, and zero secondary scoring left the Flames with yet another loss as they drop closer to the bottom of the NHL. All teams have numerous games in hand over the Flames so at this point, I’ll say it, the season is lost.
Iggy Carries Team Again
A new #1 line was created with Huselius-Longkow-Iginla. The only bright spot for fans in this game was watching Iginla shift in and shift out provide life and energy. Very few picked up from his lead. Huselius and Langkow, both in terrible slumps, managed to support Iginla all night ending with 3 points between the two of them–but the story of the night was Iginla.
Starting from the first period he was all over the ice crashing and banging and setting up great chances. The Flames had many of those, golden opportunities to put the game away, but everyone but Iginla is snake-bit. The old bad habits that will cost the team the playoffs re-occurred tonight including a last minute goal in the first period to put Columbus up 2-0.
In the second, sensing the game was getting out of hand Iginla even went beyond his dominant play by dropping the gloves after getting rough treatment in front of the net. The team seemed to respond after the fight having to be coaxed yet again into the trenches. Langkow scored on the PP to draw the team within one.
Momentum could have gone either way at this point but Iginla again single handedly took matters into his own hands, driving to the net after collecting his own dump in and scoring by hitting an airborne puck into the net while on his stomach. Life again for the Flames.
This period rolled around and both teams traded own goals, one off Tanguay and the other off Foote. Calgary dominated the third again getting great chances but couldn’t manage to score despite some more late PP opportunities. That meant one thing, a single point and overtime.
The Flames again had chances but in the end, bad habits killed them. You could almost sense on the final play before Columbus scored that something bad was going to happen. Three Flames players coasted back into the zone casually while a Columbus player barreled down for the forecheck. Two Jackets players off the bench steamed into the Flames zone on what should have been an easy clear and managed to bang home the game winner. Another loss for the sad sad Flames and still more questions than answers.
The Flames need to turn things around fast. The outcome for this team is quite simple: there’s no scoring other than Iginla and no defence (including goaltending). Calgary is in serious trouble at this point if a major change doesn’t happen.
Notes: Boyd drew into the lineup along with Nilson. Godard sat out tonight. Moss left the game with what appears to be a serious knee injury.