The Calgary Flames and Vancouver Canucks put on a show, but the Flames are still not quite there, as they could not hold onto two leads. But on the bright side, they skated for three periods. And Backlund might have had his best game of the year. Jackman continues to be the best he has been, often the best forward of the year.
The Flames skated with the Canucks for three periods, especially the first period. The Flames played their best period as Glencross and Morrison score for the Flames. Edler replied for the Canucks. And here is a surprise -- Morrison's goal was on the powerplay for the second game in a row. The Flames were great, especially in their own zone. Kipper was very good in the first period, but his best period was yet to come. Iggy really needs to get into the game. He seems to be not quite there tonight. So far, Morrison is very good.
The defence as a whole was pretty solid. The key point was the lower pairings did not cause the Flames too much trouble. Overall, a pretty solid period by the Flames.
The second period was probably the worst period for the Flames. The Canucks tie the game early in the second period 2-2, Edler scoring his second of the night. The Canucks outskated the Flames, and if it was not for Kipper it would have been worse. But you have to hand it to the Flames for hanging on at the end of the period. The penalty kill has been outstanding. The major problem in the second period was that at times, the Flames allowed the Canucks to control the game for the first time.
The Flames had to come out early in the third to make sure the Canucks fans didn't get into the game. The Flames and Canucks put on a show. Up and down, each team went with their chances. The Flames score their third goal to take the lead, and of course it was Jackman. The Canucks come right back to tie the game, a short-handed goal by Kesler (who, by the way, is the Canucks' MVP, in my opinion.) In maybe the worst penalty of the night, Jbo gets called for hooking. Whether it should have been called is not in question; it was a penalty, it doesn't matter if it was in the last minute or not.
The Canucks could not score on that powerplay late in the third and early in OT. Kipper was back to his old self. The Flames had one powerplay themselves, but they ran out of time to score. The Canucks had more scoring chances, but really, this game was pretty even.
The shootout started out with Jeff Tambellini scoring the first goal. Bourque matches that one up to tie the shootout at one. Ollie and Kesler both miss, Olli hitting the post. The winning goal comes with Tanguay potting the winner. Was it in the net? Well, that really depends on who you ask. :) But it counts.
The game was one of the best of the year. It had everything: the hits and saves, the goalies were terrific; both were awesome, Louongo robbing Glencross, and Kipper making 41 saves. The Canucks had no powerplay goals, but had one-short handed goal. The Flames had one powerplay goal, and gave up one short-handed goal.
The best forward:
Backland was outstanding. He was flying out there. He seemed to be everywhere. We really need to find him more ice time. He was super all night. Hopefully there is more to come for the smooth-skating centre.
Kipper make 41 saves, many of them just outstanding. Kipper was outstanding in powerplay chances for the Canucks. He continued to hold the twins at bay, among others. This might very well be his best game of the year.
4-3 Flames in a shootout.