Calgary entered Toronto around 3:30 AM for the last game of their brief three game road swing out East. In fact, both teams were coming off back to back nights but only one team seemed to have energy. That would be the NHL’s second worst hockey team–the Toronto Maple Leafs.
For the Flames, all the fireworks happened in the first three minutes. First two goals, one by Nystrom and one by Iginla put the Flames up by 2. Two quick fights, with Toronto getting the edge, seemed to swing momentum Toronto’s way where they never really let up for the remainder of the game.
The times they did you had a quick phantom penalty on the visiting squad….you know the kind, the ones that make you think hockey is fixed by Norwegian bookies.
Calgary did have chances on the PP, but yet again, much like years past, the PP is absolutely lost. THe PK on the other hand has come out big for the past number of games, however tonight it was 2 for 3, Toronto scoring all their goals off of their PP.
Usually 5 v 5 Calgary will dominate play, and although they had sporadic chances to extend their lead, it was almost the team was surprised by the cocky Maple Leafs, who must be used to losing because they didn’t play a loser team throughout the contest. Shots after two periods 30-11 for Toronto.
The Flames were getting embarrassed which is a tough pill to swallow because their MO is supposed to be defence first. Supposed to be….
In the third Calgary probably heard the riot act for the second straight intermission from their bench boss. It started with double shifting Iginla who started playing the wing on the fourth line with Prust and Conroy.
Almost a carbon copy of the first goal, Iginla broke down 2 v 1 two minutes into the third to put the Flames back up by 2. The shots were more respectable in the third: Calgary 11 Tdot 10.
The PP finally clicked too, without Jokinen who was in the box for a fight with Beauchemin. That’s brave given even Iginla had a tough time handling him a couple seasons back. Jay Bow scored his second goal as a Flames on the PP to give the Flames a three goal lead which they kept till the end.
Big ups to Miikka Kiprusoff who was yet again on his A game facing 40 shots in the night. Making all the saves and controlling rebounds is all you expect, and tonight goaltending was the big difference. Calgary had it, Toronto did not.
Notes: Calgary back home Tuesday. Currently they have 3 games in hand over most teams in the West so each win extends their lead in the division.