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  1. #1
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    2011/12 Grind Begins

    http://flames.nhl.com/club/news.htm?...id=DL|CGY|home

    CALGARY, AB -- After Thursday's practice, Calgary Flames head coach looked noticeably anxious in his media address.

    He shifted foot from foot, looking like he had somewhere else he desperately needed to be. When asked if he was ready to get started, his answer was immediate.

    "You hear about it, you read about it, it's talked about. Let's play now," he chuckled. "Let's get playing."

    The bench boss, along with all his like-minded pupils, will have that wish granted in a day as the Pittsburgh Penguins make their way into Calgary.

    The Pens are coming off a 4-3 shootout win over the Vancouver Canucks. Matt Cooke found the back of the net twice while Evgeni Malkin notched the deciding goal in the shootout.

    The victory featured a Penguins team many in the East fear: fast, aggressive and absolutely tenacious in all three zones. Their transition game is one of the best in the League and if a team allows them to control the play right off the hop, the Penguins usually come out on the winning end.

    The Flames know what happens when they sit back and wait to see what the pace of the game is going to be like. They did that for the first two and a half months of the season last year and it landed them a place in the Western Conference basement with the Edmonton Oilers.

    The reason for their miraculous mid-season turnaround was largely the fact they decided that instead of going along at the pace that their opposition had set, they were going to dictate just how the was played.

    Defenceman Cory Sarich believes the team needs to vividly remember just how disastrous things can be become if the Flames go with the wait-and-see approach and needs to use that as a source of motivation as soon as they step onto the ice on Saturday night.

    "I think we've seen and learned - especially over the course of last year - that if we wait and play the other team's speed, wait and kind read off them, it doesn't bode well for us," Sarich said. "We need to pushing the play. We need to push our game at them."

    As most know by now, the Pens captain Sidney Crosby will not suit up on Saturday night. The pivot has been sidelined for over nine months after being diagnosed with a concussion in early January. The 24 year-old is traveling with the team and has been taking part in practices but there there is no definitive timeline for his return.

    Despite not having number 87 in the lineup, Mark Giordano knows the team is still in the upper echelon of the Eastern Conference and cannot be treated lightly. Pittsburgh has a potent forward group that is more than capable when it comes to burying the puck and their defensive corps has a great mix of shutdown blueliners and offensive-minded rearguards.

    "Crosby's, In my opinion, the best player in the world. That's a loss for them but you saw how they played without him last year. They were still one of the best teams in the league.

    "They have a lot of weapons there and a lot of great players. We know it's going to be a challenge."
    The season starts tonight. Couldn't come with a bigger challenge than the Crysby-less Pens- thank God cuz Crysby always pads his stats against us. I'm actually expecting a win, especially with it being at home and a lot expectations from management for us to win. It's tough with Backlund being hurt, but I'm expecting good years out of guys like Moss, Bourque, Slomeester and Gio, with the usual from Iggy.

    Let's get this place bumping with some activity.

  2. #2
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    GAME #1

    http://tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=377728

    CALGARY -- The Pittsburgh Penguins erupted with four goals in the second period and held on for a 5-3 win over the Calgary Flames on Saturday.

    Defenceman Matt Niskanen had a goal and an assist for Pittsburgh, which improved to 2-0 on the season and on their current Western Canadian tour.

    Jordan Staal scored an empty-net goal and Evgeni Malkin, Craig Adams and Tyler Kennedy also had goals for the Penguins.

    Curtis Glencross, Rene Bourque and Olli Jokinen replied for the Flames in Calgary's first game of the 2011-12 season.

    Pittsburgh's season-opener was a 4-3 shootout victory in Vancouver on Thursday. Pittsburgh is in Edmonton on Sunday before returning home to face the Florida Panthers on Tuesday.

    Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury made 17 saves for the win, while Calgary counterpart Miikka Kiprusoff, who needs one win to become the franchise leader at 263, stopped 32 shots.

    The Penguins are still without captain Sidney Crosby, who is skating with the team on their current road trip but not yet cleared for contact.

    He played 41 games last season before suffering concussions in January that ended his season. Crosby scored a hat trick in Pittsburgh's 4-1 win the last time these two clubs met Nov. 27, 2010.

    Even without Crosby, the Penguins have a talented, nimble lineup led by centres Malkin and Staal and defenceman Kris Letang. Pittsburgh has been touted as a pre-season favourite to win the 2012 Stanley Cup.

    It was all Pittsburgh in the second period as the visitors outshot Calgary 16-5. After Malkin made it 4-1, tempers flared.

    The Penguins took exception to a check on Matt Cooke by Flames defenceman Cory Sarich and that prompted a line rumble near Calgary's net. Malkin later threw a couple punches at Glencross and both were sent to the penalty box for roughing and slashing respectively.

    Calgary scored twice in the third period to pull within a goal. After Fleury bobbled the puck behind his own net, Niklas Hagman backhanded the puck to Jokinen out front and the Finn beat Fleury stick side at 16:23. Calgary's Bourque halved the deficit in the third, deflecting an Alex Tanguay shot by the Pittsburgh goalie at 9:08.
    We shut it down for one period and we got pumped pretty good. We had a bit of a lay off since our last preseason game, but we looked good in the first.

  3. #3
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    http://flames.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=595140

    THE FIVE TAKEAWAYS

    GIO DOES IT ALL

    Days after getting the 'A' sewn on his jersey, Mark Giordano showcased what leadership by example means by coming out with what has to be one his best games since joining the team.

    He basically handed Curtis Glencross the opening goal on a silver platter with his terrific set-up. He danced around Craig Adams and Arron Asham at the blueline, drove towards the net and made an excellent pass to Glencross, who had an open net to shoot at.

    The 28 year-old was a shot block master, throwing himself fearlessly into the line of fire five times through the course of the game. During one penalty killing shift, he made two clutch blocks less than 20 seconds apart.

    While he was only credited with a single hit, he was physical and the Penguins seemed quite aware whenever he was on the ice, trying to avoid the Gio-train as much as possible.

    DECOYS EVERYWHERE

    The Penguins opening tally featured a four-on-one attack with blueliner Chris Butler stuck trying to decide who to cover. Tyler Kennedy stepped out of the penalty box after being called for tripping late in the first frame and he was handed the puck as soon as he hit the ice. His teammates flanked him as him came across the blueline and while he obviously had plenty of options in terms of passing, he opted to take a shot. He fooled Miikka Kiprusoff with a quick fake right before shooting and ended up putting the puck through the wickets to tie the game up.

    The Penguins went on to score three more in the second period and held the Flames to just five shots on net.

    SARICH LEVELS COOKE

    Late in the second period, Cory Sarich delivered a bone-rattling check on Matt Cooke as he entered the Flames zone. The Penguins forward leaned over as the hit was delivered and immediately grabbed at his head. His teammates rushed forward in his defence, drawing quite the crowd at the Flames net. Penguins d-man Deryk Engelland and Sarich tried to scrap but the battle ended fairly quickly with both toppling over and hitting the ice. The refs deemed the hit clean but sent Sarich to the sin bin for four minutes for roughing. Engelland was also served the same call.

    After the game, Sarich noted how quickly Cooke recovered from the hit and stated he wasn't concerned about discipline from the League.

    "He made it look more exciting than it was."

    FLASHES OF BRILLIANCE

    Roman Horak played in his first NHL game after surprising everyone with an extraordinary training camp and he performed admirably as the team's third line center. During the first period, in what will likely be his welcome-to-the-NHL moment, he squared off against Evgeni Malkin in the faceoff circle and won. The win came at an extremely important time as the Flames took an icing call and desperately needed to get some new bodies on the ice as quickly as possible.

    He then recorded his first point with an assist on Rene Bourque's third period goal. He made a pass up to Alex Tanguay at the blueline and then immediately dashed up to the net to give the Flames a presence around Marc-Andre Fleury. Tanguay ended up sliding it over to Bourque, who snapped a shot into the back of the net, but Horak made sure that if the play didn't go that smoothly, he was in prime position to whack at a rebound.

    THIRD PERIOD COMEBACK ATTEMPT

    Down 4-1 heading into the final period, the Flames came out with a ton of energy and looking to find a way to get themselves back into the game. Bourque's tally at 9:08 seemed to throw the Pens off, leading to a few turnovers in their own end.

    Just over seven minutes later, Niklas Hagman was able to snatch a loose puck at the side of the net after the netminder mishandled the puck and his pass landed right on Jokinen's stick. The pivot wasted no time in sending a shot towards the net, beating the netminder with his one-timer.

    The Flames pulled Miikka Kiprusoff in the dying minutes of the game and while they were able to get a few quality scoring chances, they weren't able to find a way to finish on those opportunities.

    Jordan Staal added an empty-netter with just five seconds remaining in regulation, squashing Calgary's comeback hopes.

  4. #4
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    http://tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=377817

    ST. LOUIS -- After a slow and inauspicious beginning, the St. Louis Blues finally found their legs.

    And when they did, the ice felt like it was tilted downward, according to Andy McDonald.

    "Maybe the first 10 (minutes), we really didn't have our game," McDonald said after the Blues defeated the Calgary Flames 5-2 Monday afternoon. "We got it turned around and there were a lot of good things tonight. We had four lines rolling and we seemed to get some momentum in the offensive zone and keep up with the changes."

    Alex Pietrangelo had a goal and an assist, Alex Steen, Chris Stewart, Kevin Shattenkirk and Jason Arnott scored goals, and McDonald added a pair of assists for the Blues, who got 15 saves from Jaroslav Halak.

    "I liked where our game got about three or four minutes into the second period," Blues coach Davis Payne said. "It was a lot of support issues early on. I thought Calgary had good jump, good intent and they were coming at us pretty good. We really had to make some adjustments as far as the type of spots we were in on the ice. Otherwise, it would have been a long night facing the kind of pressure they were giving."

    Curtis Glencross and Jarome Iginla scored for the Flames, who have dropped their first two games of the season. Henrik Karlsson got the start instead of Miikka Kiprusoff and stopped 30 shots.

    "(Kiprusoff's) not going to play 75 games this year because that's what you guys expect from him," said Flames coach Brent Sutter, who held a closed-door meeting with the players after the game. "He's not going to play that much this year and we want to get Karl going right off the bat here. Our goal going into this was Kipper was going to play the first game and Karl was going to play the second game and that's what we did."

    Karlsson said he was told before the season he would have to take on more games and felt like Monday was a tough start.

    "I felt OK during the game, but I'll have to talk to Kip and look at the game," Karlsson said. "It was a tough game, but it wasn't enough."

    The Blues outshot the Flames 35-17 and now have outshot their two opponents by a combined 68-33. Pietrangelo said it's all about everyone pitching in.
    Flames looked terrible in this game. Never had any sustained pressure and just ran around in our own end. Karlsson played good for the most part, but got no help.

    Nothing like closed door meetings two games in. It's going to be a lonnnng year.

  5. #5
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    Well my friends let's hope the Flames get on the winning side of things tonight as we need to get the first win of the season! I know it's going to be a long season and I've promised my wife minimal yelling and screaming as the reality of the situation is the Flames didn't do much in the off season. I will be a Flames fan forever but I won't be watching an excessive amount of them this year as it just hurts to watch sometimes.
    I hope they prove me wrong

  6. #6
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    http://tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=378050

    MONTREAL - What looked like a minor trade to fill in for an injured goaltender eight years ago turned into a perfect marriage for Miikka Kiprusoff and the Calgary Flames.

    The soft-spoken Kiprusoff became the team's all-time leader in wins by a goalie with 263 -- one more than Mike Vernon -- as he turned aside 35 shots on Thursday night to lead the Flames to a 4-1 victory over the Montreal Canadiens.

    "It's huge for me," said Kiprusoff, who turns 35 on Oct. 26. "I know Mike pretty well.

    "He was the starting goalie in San Jose when I first came over to North America. He's a good guy."

    Canadiens-killer Rene Bourque scored twice while Niklas Hagman and David Moss also tallied for Calgary (1-2-0), which had been outscored 10-5 in their opening two losses of the NHL regular season.

    Andrei Kostitsyn replied for Montreal (1-2-0), which outshot the Flames 36-21 and allowed only one shot on goal in the third period but could not solve Kiprusoff.

    The Flames acquired the Finnish netminder on Nov. 16, 2003 in exchange for a second round draft pick. He had been relegated to third string behind starter Evgeni Nabokov in San Jose.

    The Flames needed a goalie to replace the injured Roman Turek. They got much more than a fill-in, however, as Kiprusoff almost immediately blossomed into one of the NHL's best.

    He helped Calgary reach the Stanley Cup final in his first season, losing in Game 7 to Tampa Bay, and has since become a workhorse, starting more than 70 games per season.

    He said he still sometimes wonders about the move to Calgary that changed his life and his career.

    "Sometimes I do, actually," he said. "I was always believing that everything happens for a reason.

    "I had some tough times in San Jose, but they wanted me here and they gave me a chance. I knew (San Jose) were going to move me. I was pretty happy when it happened.

    "I've been here a long time and played a lot of games. It's about winning also. We really needed this game. Being 0-2 wasn't the start we wanted. But we played better as a team, so it's a nice win."

    It also prevented Montreal goalie Carey Price from picking up his 100th career win.

    Montreal has lost five of its last six games against the Flames, who they have not beaten in regulation time since Dec. 9, 2008. It was their first meeting since the Flames shut out Montreal 4-0 in the Heritage Classic outdoor game in Calgary last winter.

    Bourque had two goals in that game as well, and now has six goals and nine points in nine career games against the Canadiens.

    "It would be nice to play them more often," said the native of Lac La Biche, Alta. "I love coming here. I love playing in this building. You can feel the energy in here. It's like the shine of hockey."
    Good to get the first W out of the way. Didn't see any of the game but sounds like we took advantage of the Habs with all their injuries already. Off to T.O. for HNIC on Saturday.

  7. #7
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    http://flames.nhl.com/club/recap.htm...id=DL|CGY|home

    TORONTO (AP) - Phil Kessel has five goals in his last two games. He has a simple explanation.

    "They're just going in," the Toronto forward said. "I have some great linemates and they gave me the puck and we're just clicking."

    On Saturday, Kessel had two goals and an assist and the Leafs overcame an early two-goal deficit to extend their season-opening winning streak to three games, beating the Calgary Flames 3-2.

    Kessel set up Joffrey Lupul's goal at 1:15 of the second, then tied it at 2 with 3:22 left in the period. The former University of Minnesota star added his fifth goal of the season at 41 seconds of the third.

    James Reimer made 30 saves for Toronto.

    "To get off to this start, it's huge for us," Reimer said. "Hopefully we can keep it rolling, stay confident and keep improving in our game. And hopefully when it's all said and done we'll have had a pretty good season."

    Curtis Glencross and Scott Hannan scored in the first period for Calgary (1-3-0).

    "We feel we made some mistakes and that's a game that we were in pretty good control of and should have found a way to win," Flames captain Jarome Iginla said.

    The Flames took the lead at 4:18 on Glencross' deflection. Calgary doubled its advantage 1:22 later when Hannan jumped up on a rush and fired a high knuckleball that eluded Reimer.

    "He had no chance on those two goals," Leafs coach Ron Wilson said.

    The Leafs started their comeback early in the second when Kessel found a streaking Lupul, whose shot got by Miikka Kiprusoff's left side.

    The Leafs were given an opportunity to tie the game when Olli Jokinen was sent to the box for 4 minutes for high-sticking John-Michael Liles. Toronto's power play, however, couldn't muster much on a night both sides went scoreless with the man advantage.

    Kessel's equalizer came after Tyler Bozak broke up a Calgary rush. Carl Gunnarsson picked up the loose puck and fed a long pass to the winger on the right side. Kessel then cut in on goal and went high to score.

    Bozak finished the night with two assists.

    In the thitd, Kessel threw a pass across the face of the goal that hit a skate and Kiprusoff couldn't get across the prevent the puck from going in.

    NOTES: Kiprusoff made 22 saves. ... The crowd was announced at 19,410.
    I think I'd rather have a scorching case of herpes than lose to the Leafs. We looked good for most of the game, just when we'd have a good scoring chance, they'd go down and score. At least that's how the first two goals for the Leafs happened. Hit a couple bars, PK looked good all night, just couldn't get that third goal which would've put them away earlier.

  8. #8
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    http://flames.nhl.com/club/recap.htm...id=DL|CGY|home

    CALGARY, Alberta (AP) - The Calgary Flames seemed to be headed for another disappointing loss, until some bounces finally started going their way. Jay Bouwmeester and Alex Tanguay scored late in the third period, and the Flames rallied for a 2-1 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday night. "Every time we were skating into their zone we were either losing the puck or we weren't making the right plays. We weren't taking the good shots, but we stuck with it," Tanguay said. "You don't want to say that there's luck involved in hockey, but we certainly got the right bounces at the right time." For the game's first 54 minutes, it appeared that Tom Gilbert's first-period goal would stand up as the winner. Calgary pulled even after a spirited rush into the Oilers end by Lee Stempniak eventually resulted in the puck landing on the stick of Bouwmeester, who beat screened goalie Devan Dubnyk with a wrist shot at 14:03. The Flames grabbed the lead 89 seconds later. Cory Sarich's shot from the blue line into a crowd bounced to the side of the net where Tanguay knocked in his first goal of the season. "By no means was it pretty, but we'll take it," Tanguay said. "Hopefully we can build a little bit of confidence from the last seven, eight minutes." As positive as those final moments were for the Flames, the Oilers were left with a bitter loss. "That's why it's a 60-minute game. That's frustrating," Gilbert said. "I know our second period wasn't the way we wanted but we came out, still with the one-goal lead and played well enough in the third to win that game. We have to bear down when it comes to crunch time with minutes ticking down in the third period." Calgary (2-3) has won nine straight at home against Edmonton and 13 of 14 from the Oilers overall. Edmonton (2-2-1) is now headed for its own four-game homestand. "That game was ugly," said Oilers coach Tom Renney, shaking his head. "It was tough sledding out there for both teams. It wasn't a work of art, that's for sure." Miikka Kiprusoff finished with 24 saves to improve to 2-2. He made a huge stop at the end of the game, sprawling to deny Anton Lander with his arm at the side of the net. "A goalie is like a pitcher in baseball. If he plays well he's going to give you a chance to win, and Miikka certainly did that for us," Tanguay said. Kiprusoff also came up huge at the end of the second period to keep the Flames within a goal. After firing just two shots in the period's first 18 minutes, the Oilers peppered Kiprusoff with four shots on a late power play. "We had a lot of chances on that power play, and Kipper took a lot of shots and he was sharp, but you have to execute in these games for sure," Oilers forward Magnus Paajarvi said. "When the games here are so tight as they are, it's really, really important. Unfortunately we didn't do that." The Oilers were thwarted on three third-period power plays, as well, to finish 1 for 6. The Flames were 0 for 3 with the extra man. Dubnyk made 26 saves for Edmonton. The Oilers played with seven defenseman because second-year forward Taylor Hall sat out with the flu. Calgary got its season-high, six-game homestand off to an excellent start. Edmonton scored the only goal of the first period by capitalizing on a power play, the result of an undisciplined penalty by Calgary's Tim Jackman, who cross-checked Cam Barker in a skirmish after the play. It took only 27 seconds for the Oilers to connect, with Gilbert ripping a hard slap shot past Kiprusoff on the glove side from just inside the blue line. Renney continued his early-season pattern of alternating goalies, going with the 25-year-old Dubnyk, who played his minor hockey in Calgary. Dubnyk started the season opener and looked great turning aside 33 of 34 shots in a 2-1 shootout win over Pittsburgh. But in his second game, he surrendered four goals on 26 shots in a loss to Vancouver. He bounced back with a strong outing against Calgary. "He was good for us," Renney said. "He was square to the shooter. He knows what he's doing in there and he gave us a chance to get a point."
    Pretty bush league editing job by the writer on the Flames site haha. Big win for the boys. nothing like beating the Oilers to get some momentum and get out of a slump. Kipper was good. Was good to see us contain RNH and their youth.

  9. #9
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    http://www.nhl.com/ice/recap.htm?id=2011020087

    CALGARY -- Thanks to Ryan McDonagh, the Rangers beat the clock and the Flames.

    McDonagh, a second-year defenseman, scored with 1.4 seconds left in overtime to give New York a 3-2 victory Thursday night, the Rangers' first victory in Calgary in almost nine years.

    McDonagh corralled Dan Girardi's point shot off the end boards and fired it behind a sprawling Henrik Karlsson to give the Rangers their second consecutive win on the road -- and their first at the Scotiabank Saddledome since Nov. 14, 2002. They are 2-1-2 despite playing their first five games away from Madison Square Garden and have stops in Edmonton on Saturday and Winnipeg on Monday before playing their home opener next Thursday.

    "You feel excited about getting the two points," Rangers coach John Tortorella said. "More importantly I thought we -- through most of the game -- played better as a team. We get a good bounce off the kickboards, we talked about the lively kickboards here, Danny Girardi makes a great play and we get two points."

    Henrik Lundqvist made 33 saves to win a goaltending battle with Karlsson, a fellow Swede, in a game that saw four goals scored in the opening period and no more until McDonagh connected to end the game.

    "He's just a world-class athlete," McDonagh said of his goaltender, who made 40 saves in a 4-0 win at Vancouver on Tuesday. "He gave us every chance possible to win this game."

    Karlsson stopped 26 of 29 in the losing effort.

    "I really think we deserved two points," Karlsson said. "The guys played really good in front of me. I really wanted to give them something back. Overall we created more chances and Lundqvist played good in the Rangers' net. It would've been fun to stand heads-up with him in the shootout. That was disappointing."

    Karlsson's best stops came at the expense of Marian Gaborik midway through the second period. Sprung on a partial breakaway, Gaborik burst by Giordano but couldn't beat Karlsson's pad. Moments later on the same shift, Gaborik had another opportunity to put his team up by one but the Calgary netminder again shut him down on the doorstep.

    Lundqvist was equally up to the task, flashing his right pad after a turnover behind the net put the puck on the stick of Tom Kotsopoulos in the slot. He then turned aside a Tim Jackman, who let go a spinaround backhand that went off of Lundqvist's blocker before bouncing on top of the net and rolling off the back.

    The Rangers' goalie continued to frustrate Flames shooters in the third.

    Off his post after playing the puck, Lundqvist was forced to be sharp just two minutes into the final frame after the Flames' Niklas Hagman tried to bounce it off the back of his leg. He denied Calgary again at 8:30, turning aside both a Jay Bouwmeester slap shot on an odd-man rush as well as Curtis Glencross' rebound attempt, helping push the game into overtime.

    Karlsson stopped five shots in the extra period before McDonagh beat him on the sixth.

    The Rangers opened the scoring on the power play at 4:53 of the first period. With Cory Sarich in the box for interference, Gaborik was the beneficiary of a nifty three-way passing play set up by Derek Stepan and Brad Richards.

    Calgary captain Jarome Iginla answered just 58 seconds later. After Lundqvist wasn't able to corral a shoot-in attempt by Scott Hannan, Alex Tanguay retrieved the puck along the hash marks and fed a cross-crease pass that Iginla tapped in to draw even at 1-1.

    Former Flame Brandon Prust put the Rangers back on top with a shorthanded goal at 13:52, beating Karlsson over the shoulder.

    But Calgary got even on its next power play. With Kris Newbury serving an extra two minutes for instigating a fight with Sarich, Mark Giordano used a well-placed wrist shot from the point to beat a screened Lundqvist over the right shoulder.

    "I felt pretty bad on that power-play goal, I was screening him a little bit there," McDonagh admitted. "I wanted to try to make it up for him and I am glad I could with the game winner in overtime."

    The Rangers defenseman atoned with his buzzer-beater.

    "Once Danny gets the puck there, there's not a lot of time and I kind of am creeping down just seeing if there is any kind of bounce," McDonagh said. "I know he's going to put it on the net and thankfully it took a good bounce and there was enough time to put it in."
    Ugh. A game we should've had. Boumeester pussied out in the corner and didn't play the puck and Prust scored shorthanded. Iginla let McDonagh get behind him for the OT winner with like a second left. Pretty greasy loss but one point is better than no points.
    Last edited by statquo; 10-21-2011 at 05:28 AM.

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    The Flames battled well last night and it was nice to see them dominate on the shot tally! A few typical breakdowns in the defensive zone but I'm sure coach Sutter will be working on those today at practice. Morrison are you sure you are ready to play this season? Your lackadaisical effort in trying to play the puck with 8 seconds left in your own zone, come on man you are an experienced veteran. The young Flames look up to you and leading by example should be your game!
    Let's hope for a big effort in the matinee against Nashville.

    www.thesportsrealestateguy.com

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