Referee Assist Massive Loss

It’s not often someone can legitimately hassle the referees. Usually home team bias overlooks the mostly consistent and impartial refereeing. Tonight, one of the worst displays of officiating took place in thisyear’s NHL took place. The entire series may have been changed after Dan O’Halloran took it upon himself to call to bogus penalties against the Flames to give Chicago all the extra momentum they needed.

Disgusting. Personally, it’s more disappointing because I want to watch playoff hockey, not a pre-season game with dives and overzealous refs.

Chicago took it to the Flames in the first. Three first period goals thanks to PP momentum (and a PPG), a lucky bounce off the stantion, and good hussle to the net. Calgary couldn’t get their jets moving mostly because every time they started something they got a bogus penalty called.

Calgary needed to respond in the second early. They were spurred along by massive line changes from D to forward. The changes seemed to pay off thanks to a Adam Pardy move started by Sarich. Pardy was held on the boards–no call.

Chicago responded quickly though, and Miikka Kiprusoff let in a second easy goal, not a great showing by him. Chicago forwards were beating Calgary defencemen to the puck all night, Phaneuf costing us the fourth goal.

In came McElhinney. Dan O’Halloran called a high sticking penalty giving Calgary their first powerplay of the game. You could tell he didn’t want to call it but alas, it was two feet from his face there was no choice.

Chicago added yet another goal late in the period after blown coverage. That was after a lengthy series where Calgary could barely get out of the zone. Out coached, out worked, out classed in every respect now, and the brief PP they had was perhaps a detriment to the Flames effort.

The second most pathetic show of the game was the Flames effort. They were finished by the Blackhawks even though the refs had a huge part to do with it. But again, the Hawks did the work, not the refs.

As such, you have to at least attempt to put in an effort. Adam Pardy tried to respond to an Ben Eager hit on little Cammalleri. Eager drops the gloves and starts throwing them, no instigator, and he feels like a big man beating up a non fighter.

Flames response? none. They did have a 5v3 but Keenan has done zero coaching to hel pthe PP and the chances were a big FAIL. Dion Phaneuf did leave the game at the tail end after the Hawks headhunted him and caught him after he took a shot.

Calgary really gave nothing for Chicago to think of for Game Six. They folded the tent and looked like a team that could be pushed around. It’s a lame time to be a Flames fan, and baring miracle, the season is over.

Notes: Dan O’Halloran gave Chicago the extra push and they finished it off. Credit the the players on the Hawks for putting their heart on the ice, something Calgary forgot about. Regardless of how disgraceful a referee works you have to dig deeper, crash the net, and come up big. Maybe the Flames just plain suck…..Or maybe they’ll turn it around and push it to a game seven.