How much money changes hands to fix NHL games do you think? The answer is not as much as NFL, college, or NBA. Nonetheless you have to really shake your head at officiating. Calgary as a whole got the royal screw job from officials today in both the NHL and the CFL.

SEVEN penalties against the Flames including a crucial last minute phantom call on Bouwmeester that gave Detroit a chance to win it in overtime. Why oh why does the NHL continue to advocate for a shotty product on ice by condoning diving? Seriously, to mess around with questionable calls on ‘holds’ and ‘hooks’ ruins the hockey games.

With that rant over, the Flames lost cause they just didn’t close. For some reason Sutter has a brilliant idea of defensive shell with a 4-2 lead. Tanguay’s goal was the last shot the FLames had in the third period. Heartbreaking loss for sure, but you just invite disaster with timid play with league elite’s.

Conspiracy theorists will claim that everyone knows the Detroit market is crucial, that the fan base is hurting for a reason to spend their money on stuff (Detroit is practically bankrupt), and that the hockey team will win games if they consistency get to play full periods on the PP.

Cudos to the Flames for sticking to their game and pulling out solid 5v5 play. Without the refs help it was a 4-2 win.

Admittedly it didn’t help Stajan took a stupid penalty in the end (where’s that guy’s head?) But when you consistently give the home team PP after PP, even late in the game on marginal calls, it’s starts to raise questions about game fixing.

[I remember an article a while back of the massive discrepancy between home team and away team penalty calls. Albeit the Flames benefit from that stat, I wonder what it is with Canadian teams (or hockey markets that aren’t as lucrative, say a Phoenix v. a Maple Leafs.

I suppose the theory falls apart when you see that the Leafs are among the most beloved franchises….]

Back to the game. Jarome Iginla chimed in with three points, mind you the OT goal was clearly his fault (he lost his man). Kipper came up with some solid saves, Alex Tanguay also potted a goal on his birthday no less.

So to sum up, Calgary got a point, but they needed two, and they deserved two, but the refs go in the bloody way.

Notes: Back at er tomorrow, Calgary in New York. Robyn Regehr left the game with a leg injury. The Heralds Vicki Hall reported:

Robyn Regehr walked out of Joe Louis Arena on his steam. “I’d feel better if I didn’t go head-first into the boards.” #Flames

Cory Sarich a brilliant -2.