Just like playing against Montreal, Vancouver has their fair share of fans showing up to game. You know the types, they show up to the province looking for minimum wage jobs and scrounge enough money to watch their favorite team struggle to make the playoffs.
Regardless of how you paint it, the two divisional rivals always combine for a spirited affair. Tonight was no different.
Dion Phanuef Injured? Would Explain His Horrific Defence
For the first and second period Calgary controlled most of the play. Thankfully for Flames fans Jarome Iginla opened the scoring off a nice passing play from Bourque and Iginla. That was his first goal in 20 games. His two points tonight puts him second all-time for the Flames.
Although calgary dominated all it took was some untimely plays to give the visitors chances they could capitalize on. Bertuzzi (one-a-game-minor-penalty) kicked a puck loose with 15 seconds left that Vancouver scored.
The Canucks second goal came off the PP, a bit lucky, but what was more alarming was how Dion Phaneuf defends. On the PK, one hand on the stick, sitting back on his heels, covering nobody. That’s how the guy plays defense. Stupid.
Thankfully Langkow got his 20th of the year a minute later to tie the game. Bourque scored in the early third to give the Flames the lead off a 2v1 opportunity.
Alexander Burrows was relentless on the puck and playing under the skin of some of the Flames. But just like a typical Canuck fan when push came to shove Burrows turtles like a coward.
In the third the story of the game emerged with Calgary on the penalty kill. Three times Miikka Kiprusoff made amazing saves, each better than the one before. First a glove save, then stoning Mats Sundin, and finally an amazing save off the line in the air with the paddle of his stick. Sensational.
The other end Luongo made timely and clutch saves as well, but let in a softie against Bourque that gave Calgary the temporary lead.
Vancouver upped their play in the third maintaining downlow pressure and getting Calgary on their heels. They took their chances on the PP to retake the momentum. Calgary on the other hand couldn’t even get a shot on goal with a 5v3 PP and only a late shot with a 5v4 later in the game.
The pressure continued with the goalie out and 50 seconds left when Bieska let one rip from the point and it squeaked through kipper and the 5 players in front.
Conroy hit the post with ten seconds left but overtime would be needed. Somewhat surprisingly, OT was not nearly as exciting as the third period. Nothing was solved, so a shoot-out would be needed
All Flames players missed their chance sand Demitra scored. Bertuzzi had a pretty deke spinning to the backhand but the post stopped him cold. Luongo thought he won the Stanley Cup when the post did all the work.
Two points for Vancouver but one for the Flames who are starting to find their form again. Too bad the Canucks won’t make the playoffs because it would be a wild series if these two teams matched up.
Notes: Andre Roy left the game after taking a punch to the head (he sat on the bench in the third.) Mike Keenan deflected attention from Iginla’s point problems by picking on Willie Mitchell’s ‘long stick’. Mitchell came out in warm up with a 10 foot long stick as a joke.