Tops in the West – Flames Beat Philly

Tops in the West – Flames Beat Philly

The Calgary Flames continued their Eastern road trip swing by getting back on winning track versus Philly. The Flames seem to have trouble beating up on non-playoff teams, Philly being no exception. Twice now they’ve had to come from behind in the third and pull out a late overtime victory to pull in the two points. Two points that have temporarily placed the Flames at the top of the Western Conference. They have amassed points up to the halfway point this season that’s only matched by the very Cup winning 88-89 team from yesteryear.

Now what?

The Flames continue their road swing in Chicago tomorrow. In the meantime, the January schedule up until the All-Star break looks on paper to be their easiest yet. Whether they can continue torrid pace and confirm their place as a consistent hockey club riding the top of the standings will be put to the test. Despite their play the pursuit for top spot is tight. No less than 8 teams are in the mix and any prolonged bump along the way could put a team out and behind. That’s how close it is, but also how consistent the team has been throughout the year.

Despite their winning ways there’s still a lot to give as well. Third line scoring is absence. James Neal is still asleep at the wheel, and Mike Smith needs to find his game. The emergence of David Rittich and the dominance of Gaudreau finding a new level of elite propels this team forward. Matthew Tkachuck is slowly finding his way, although not as dominant as Gaudreau, the 21 year old will eclipse his career best in half as many games.

Career bests. A lot of players are having that kind of year, and more can jump on the train.

But will they peak too soon? Will they fizzle out? Fans are understandably nervous. It’s been a long time since we’ve seen a team of this calibre, and we don’t want to be fooled again.

3 thoughts on “Tops in the West – Flames Beat Philly

  1. Slow and steady wins the race. A required strategy. The torrid pace and the team’s success is awesome to see. Third line problems may eventually dissipate. Patience is said to be the mother of virtue. James Neal may have lost his scoring touch, but his attempts are evident. Matthew Tkachuk has been quiet…but his on the bench looks have been disconcerting…signifying something deep…almost internal. Career bests are admirable. Bottom line though? A steady pace should be upheld….not greedy enough to be on the top and lose their energy, but determined to accomplish what they had lost in the past.

  2. Panthers and Flames post game comments were missed – the fourth consecutive game the Flames had won. Coming from behind. What consistency! The M-line has been producing well of late. It had been Frolik and Backlund at first. Last night it was Frolik and Tkachuk. That’s consistency! Power play markers have been quite significant and somewhat consistent. Penalty killing statistics are great and so are shorthanded markers. Bravo to the players. Expecting a 100% efficiency makes players God not humans. Only God is perfect.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *