Flames End Home Horror Show

D'Arcy McGrath

January 27th, 2002

It's a little late for silver linings, but with the way the past two months of hockey have gone for the Calgary Flames, you can't blame them for searching.

The Flames concluded a six game home stand with a woeful one win, five loss record, a disappointing result in a very critical point in their schedule.

With a daunting second half road schedule ahead of them, essentially they wasted a chance to make some hay.

Against Vancouver on Saturday night, they once again showed the ability to return to the more sound defensive scheme they deployed earlier in the season, but were unable to score, and dropped a 2 - 0 contest.

The Canucks opened the scoring early in the first period when Brent Sopel found the puck on his stick on the point and fired a screened shot past Roman Turek to put the visitors up a goal.

The Flames stormed the Vancouver net for the rest of the period, but were unable to beat Canuck starter Petr Skudra, despite a 13-6 edge in shots on goal.

The second period featured the Flames best chance to tie the game when a Scott Nichol shot in the slot caromed off of both goal posts and somehow stayed out of the net. The play managed to fool even the goal judge, who turned on the goal light, and Enmax who fired their natural gas torch.

The third period featured some more chances, but the Flames for the second straight game were unable to cash in.

Marc Savard looked to have tied it when he took the puck off the boards, brought it out front and fired it at a yawning Canuck cage only to have Skudra slide across and make a sensational save.

With four minutes left the Canucks salted the game away when Craig Conroy was fingered for a phantom high sticking call, putting the visitors on the powerplay. Replays showed that the errant stick was actually that of another Vancouver player, incensing Conroy, the Flames and the crowd.

On the powerplay, Todd Bertuzzi took a clever centering pass and fired a low shot from in tight past Turek to put the game away.

The loss leaves the Flames in 11th spot in the west with 50 points in 51 games. It's the first time this season that the Flames have been under .500. They now trail the Canucks by five points for the final playoff spot in the West.

The announced attendance was 17,068 on the night.



Vancouver Canucks 2
Calgary Flames 0

Box Score


Saprykin Conroy Shantz
Lowry Savard Iginla
Hentunen Wilm Petrovicky
Allison Nichol Berube
Morris Regehr
Gauthier Boughner
Lydman Kravchuk


1 Petr Skudra - Simply the difference in a low scoring affair. 

2 Brent Sopel - Scored a goal in the first period, which held up as the game winner.

3 Roman Turek - Screened on the first goal, but solid after that point to hold the Flames within a goal.


A sliding Petr Skudra kept the game in Vancouver's favour when he slit feet first, post to post to stone Marc Savard in the third period. 


Flame defenceman Robyn Regehr caught Brendan Morrison with his head down in the third period, delivering a solid open ice hit.


The Flames can look directly at special teams in analyzing yet another close loss. The Flames came up empty on five chances, while the Canucks made one of their four chances count. ... The teams spent 26:00 minutes in the Canucks zone on the night, compared to only 21:15 in the Calgary zone. ... The Flames out shot the Canucks by a 29 -21 margin. ... The Flames out did their visitors in the face off circle, winning a whopping 60% of the draws. The Flames didn't have a center under 50%. ... The hit count was also in the Flames favour, with a 23-21 edge to the home side. The Flames leader was Robyn Regehr with 4 on the night. ... The Canuck's Brent Sopel blocked a game high four shots.



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