Eight different players from the San Jose Sharks were able to find the net in last night’s clinic against the Calgary Flames at the HP Pavilion. Head coach Todd McLellan switched his lines before the start of the contest, resulting in his squad to post 9 goals to Calgary’s 1. The victory matched the most lopsided game in Sharks franchise history when they beat the Flames 8-0 in December of 2000.
Coach McLellan chose to credit his players more so despite the recent changes, saying ”I just think they got it going, and it’s going their way right now. Sometimes a change here and there can trigger it, but in this case I don’t think that’s it.” Calgary (26-18-6) will look to earn their first win of the month against the Chicago Blackhawks this coming Thursday. San Jose is currently making their way to LA to matchup with the Kings tonight at 10:30 PM ET.
Marian Hossa found the net the twice yesterday as the Chicago Blackhawks went on to coast by the Minnesota Wild 4-1 at the United Center. Minnesota took the lead early courtesy of Guillaume Latendresse 13:52 into the contest. John Madden then tied it up before the start of the second period. Hossa’s first goal helped Chicago gain the lead, where the lineup proceeded to pad the stats from there.
“We like the way we’re playing,” said Chicago coach Joel Quenneville. “I think at home, we’ve been very effective in a lot of ways. Ask me at the end of that eight-game road trip we got coming up at the end of the month and we’ll have a better idea.” The Blackhawks have now won four straight and will look to continue their streak against the Boston Bruins Thursday at the TD Garden. The Wild are next set to host the Calgary Flames back in Minnesota.
Kris Versteed scored twice on power play opportunities as his Chicago Blackhawks netted five goals in the second period alone, eventually posting a 7-1 victory in the books over the Calgary Flames. Five other Blackhawks were able to boost their stats with Versteed as the only player to notch multiple goals. Cristobal Huet denied 27 of 28 Calgary shot attempts on their own home ice. “Great game across the board, I’m very happy with all aspects and areas of our game,” said Chicago coach Joel Quenneville. “Everyone contributed.”
The Flames will try to build themselves back up for their Saturday contest against the Los Angeles Kings. Captain Jarome Iginla, knowing the potential of his team was surely frustrated after yesterday’s pathetic showing. “There wasn’t a guy in here, every single one of us, that was nearly good enough especially in an important time of the game in the second period where we just had a meltdown,” he said. “We’ve been doing that against this team for a while and we haven’t been good enough lately. That was embarrassing.”
The 13-5-2 Blackhawks will next travel to Edmonton to square off against the Oilers. The best deals for Chicago Blackhawks tickets can be found right here at AceTicket.com!
After six years away from the NHL, former veteran RW Theo Fleury is determined to make a comeback at the age of 41 years old. Fleury ran into trouble with the league after violating the NHL substance abuse policy during the 2002-2003 season. Since then with the help of Alcoholics Anonymous and his family members, the seven time All-Star reached out for reinstatement.
Drafted 166th overall by the Calgary Flames in 1987, Fleury is currently in the process of signing back with the first team that gave him a look to begin with. During his 15 previous seasons with the Flames, Colorado Avalanche, New York Rangers, and Chicago Blackhawks, he earned 455 goals with 633 assists. If he doesn’t make the Flames line up, he will be expected to be a part of the Abbotsford Flames farm team.
Aside from his quest to re-join the NHL, Fleury more importantly is happy to be back on the right track. “I think the biggest thing is that I’m healthy again,” he said. “I’ve lost a lot of weight and eating properly and sleeping well. It’s been all part of my personal growth more than anything else.”
Recap – The captain of the offensively loaded Calgary Flames, Jarome Iginla, has been the main reason why they currently hold the top spot in the Northwest Division. He scored 32 goals and recorded 31 assists for an impressive first half of the season. One player who needs some time off is goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff. The net-minder has seen action in 49 of the teams 50 games this season and leads the NHL in minutes played. He may not being showing signs of it now, but the wear and tear will certainly set in late in the season and have a major impact on the success of the team.
2nd Half – It is only a matter of time before Kiprusoff runs out of gas, and when he goes, so will the teams defensive leadership. The Flames will make the playoffs but will have a tough first round match-up. A worn down defense will get beat in a series sweep and extinguish the flame until the 2008-2009 season.
Team Name: Calgary Flames (25-17-8)
Northwest Division Standing: 1st place
Conference Standing: 5th place
Final Prediction – 3rd in Northwest Division, 7th in Western Conference
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