Calgary Flames 4 Dallas Stars 3

Flames Continue Master over Masters 

Rick Charlton

December 14th, 2001

Some old friends decided to drop by after a long absence and the result was a 4-3 Calgary victory in Dallas last night in the first game of an extended six game road trip.

Criticized and given up for dead by most observers, Chris Clark, Rob Niedermayer and Marc Savard chipped in with key goals and Roman Turek returned to the Calgary lineup from an injury to backstop the Flames to their second win this year in Dallas.

Clark scored for the first time in 16 games, Savard for the first time in 12 games and Niedermayer added only his second in 11 games.

Since the tail-end of Calgary's 10 game undefeated streak which ended in November, all three have been skating ineffective circles, the Flames winning only twice in their previous 12 games.

The Ottawa game was also the last time the Flames had notched four goals or more, clearly underlining Calgary is a squad that must score by committee in order to be competitive.

McAmmond added the other Flames goal.

The victory in Dallas leaves the Flames at 16-9-6-2 on the season, good for 40 points and third spot overall in the Western Conference behind front-runners Detroit and Edmonton.

Calgary is 7-2-1 against Dallas, Colorado, St. Louis and Detroit this season, a remarkable record considering they have also been soundly trounced by also-rans like Anaheim, Columbus and Tampa Bay.

Surprisingly, the victory came without an offensive contribution from NHL scoring leader Jarome Iginla and sparkplug Craig Conroy.

For the Flames, however, plagued by a one-dimensional attack, the arrival of some secondary scoring help was timely indeed.

Coach Greg Gilbert took McAmmond off the Conroy/Iginla line and gave him to Niedermayer. The change seemed to reinvigorate the latter, who might have played his best game as a Flame.

The victory was somewhat miraculous as the Flames fell behind 2-0 early to one of the better defensive teams in the NHL.

Flames give up the first goal for the fifth time in six games when Pat Verbeek found himself alone to the right of Turek with a gaping net at 4:54 of the first.

Benoit Brunet padded the Dallas lead shorthanded at 9:02. Jamie Langenbrunner squirted the puck free at the Dallas blueline sending Brunet in alone on Turek. Brunet hit the post on his initial attempt, but the rebound bounced off Turek and into the net.

With the Flames reeling, Clark managed to come back immediately, scoring on the same powerplay as Brunet's shorthanded marker, pounding an Igor Kravchuk rebound over a sprawling Eddie Belfour at 10:35.

Calgary then stunned the Stars in the second period by first tying the game then going ahead on goals only 71 seconds apart by by McAmmond and Savard.

Niedermayer popped out of the penalty box and joined a three on one rush, feeding McAmmond for a one-time ripper from the slot that surprised Belfour at 10:55.

Savard then put the Flames on top for good, deflecting a Bob Boughner point shot past Belfour.

In the third Niedermayer seemed to give Calgary an insurmountable cushion, getting a couple of whacks at putting the puck over a sprawled Belfour at 16:47.

But Mike Modano made it close at 19:21 when another post shot ricocheted off Turek and into the net.

Turek was splendid throughout this one, his earlier rust wearing off into a steady performance, the kind of netminding the Flames didn't get from Kay Whitmore against Tampa a few nights ago.

Craig Conroy left the game for a time to get stitches for a nasty cut between his lip and nose.

Calgary was one for six on the powerplay while Dallas failed to score on five attempts with the man advantage.

The game was a less than spectacular effort by Belfour, tuning up for a potential spot on Canada's Olympic team, with only 13 saves on 17 shots. Turek faced 28 shots by Dallas, stopping 25 in upping his record to 15-5-5 on the year.

The game marked the 166th consecutive sellout in Dallas, attendance coming in at 18,532.


Box Score


Niedermayer Conroy Iginla
Lowry Savard Nichol
McAmmond Wilm Clark
Petrovicky Begin Hentunen
Regehr Lydman
Gauthier Boughner
Kravchuk Allison


1) Roman Turek - Can't be blamed on the first two goals then put up a wall to allow his team to come back from a 2-0 deficit.

2) Dean McAmmond - You know a guy has arrived when his changing linemates rack up points because of him and not in spite of him.

3) Benoit Brunet - One of the more injury prone players in the league but when he's healthy he's always been a quality forward.


In the first period Steve Begin failed to clear the puck over the Calgary blueline which trapped Robyn Regehr moving the wrong way, allowing Mike Modano to scamper in alone on Roman Turek who managed to hold his ground and keep his team within a single goal.


No doubt about this one as Denis Gauthier put his shoulder into the legs of an unsuspecting Daryl Sydor, hoisting the Dallas defenceman into an impressive flying arc that resulted in an unpleasant looking landing on his head. Sydor was gone for the rest of the game.


Derek Morris missed his eighth straight game - and doesn't appear to be ready for St. Louis tomorrow - thus allowing Toni Lydman to rack up 27:12 in ice time to lead the Flames. Jarome Iginla led Flames forwards with 24:12 in ice time. Sergei Zubov logged 25:39 for the Stars. . . .  .Calgary was flogged mercilessly in the faceoff circle, winning only 37% of its draws. It was so bad the Stars arrogantly pulled Belfour late in the game for a faceoff at centre ice, confident Joe Nieuwendyk would win. He did. Niedermayer was the only Flame on the plus side of the ledger at 52% while Conroy was an abysmal 31%, possibly his worst showing of the year. Nieuwendyk was a spectacular 76% and Modano wasn't far behind at 61% . . . . .Gauthier led the Flames with six hits while Derian Hatcher came in with seven for the Stars. . . . . An unusual stat in this game, perhaps compensating for Calgary's terrible faceoff percentage, was the Stars having 27 giveaways to Calgary's nine. Richard Matvichuk was a stumblebum with six.



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