I always knew that this year’s much cheaper version of Jokinen would be a welcomed addition to the Flames lineup. He currently leads the team in points and is also leading the playoff push playing some of his best hockey in the past 5 seasons.
Tonight he was dominant with the first line (the only scoring line unfortunately) notching his 7th career hat-trick for a four point night on the way to a hard fought win and crucial two points. It was only a matter of days ago when Jokinen got his first goal of 2012. The tongue in cheek solution to his scoring woes? A McDonalds Big Mac. Even though it made him a bit sick to the stomach it seems to be working :P.
Before the game I tweeted
Well the Flames will be dropping two points tonight. Prove me wrong fellas, happy to be wrong… .#yyc
And of course I was wrong. In fact, the Flames played one of their best games of the year (less a 90 second stretch in the second period). The team came out to battle lead by the top line in the scoring department but the ‘second line’ with Blair Jones in the middle mucking it up. I for one don’t like Jones as a second line center, don’t like his dives, but the team sorrily lacks the type of grit and much he brings to the table.
Of course, on the back end Miikka Kiprusoff saved his best for last. As the Flames took the first two periods and matched the Sharks stride for stride, tables turned in the third. As the Sharks pressed late Kipper took it upon himself to make key saves, including a doozy from his stomach preventing the puck from entering the goal by kicking up his legs. Iginla one Kipper,
“Honestly, this is the best Iâ€™ve seen him. I know heâ€™s won the Vezina before, but…”
If the Flames make it perhaps? But in the least Miikka collected his 300th win, a rare feat for any goalie.
No relishing this victory. A must win game (again) against Phoenix tomorrow.