Flames Sing the Blues
What the f@&K was that?
The Calgary Flames honoured Al MaCinnis, the best defenceman to ever play in Calgary, in a 25 minute pre-game ceremony that included three (yes, three) standing ovations.
After that however, there were few times for the Flames faithful to get out of their seats in a 3-1 loss to the much better St. Louis Blues.
Despite scoring the first goal of the game on a well placed shot from Curtis Glencross, the Flames once again fell flat and left the first period trailing by one – a deficit they would not recover from.
Jason Arnott scored his 15th goal of the season, and 2nd of the game, on the power play 6:21 in the second period.
The Flames didn’t have much in terms of an answer.
Once again, they were out shot, this time it was 24-21, but it was 17-11 through two periods. Further to that I would venture to guess that scoring chances were less than five for the Flames. I can’t recall Jaroslav Halak having to make any outstanding saves. The Flames never tested him. Hell, they could barely get the puck of over the blue line.
Coming out of the Philly game where they were outshot 45-21 and relinquished a 3-0 lead, Coach Sutter harped on the fact that this team is being too fancy and isn’t getting enough pucks to the net. Yet, the Flames come out in this game and commit the exact same mistakes. Is Sutter’s message not getting through? Or worse, is it falling on deaf ears? That’s up for debate and if they continue to slide, it will become a much larger debate at season’s end.
Give credit to the Blues for being extremely good on the defensive side of the puck (a testament to their coach Ken Hitchcock), but it still doesn’t excuse how bad the Flames were tonight.
On numerous occasions they had opportunities to get pucks on net, yet most of the time they would try to thread a pass through a plethora of skates or take a bad angle shot that would be blocked or deflected into the mesh.
Add to that the horrible power play attempts and the Flames really had an all around terrible evening at home.
Coming out of a day where GM Jay Feaster gives the team a vote of confidence by not breaking up the team, this Flames team looked frustrated and lacked drive. The Blue drove the net and fore-checked the hell out of Calgary forcing the Flames into some bad penalties. The Blues not only won the game 3-1, but they were in the heads of the Flames players.
On a night where the Los Angeles Kings lost, it was an opportune night for the Flames to gain on them. However, with Colorado winning, it almost doesn’t matter as the Flames lose ground on yet another team they have to beat to make the playoffs.
And don’t look now but Minnesota only sits 2 points back and Anaheim sits three back of Calgary.
The Flames better wake up now or this playoff drive could end the exact same as last season, with the Flames on the outside looking in.
The Flames finished their four game homestand without a win – 0-2-2.
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