Bounce Back Boys At It Again 

Down and Out Flames Game From Cup Final 

May 17th, 2004

We all know that "B" horror movie plot. Crazed killer with an axe to grind falls off a cliff, gets hit by a car and impales himself on a staked fence, only to come back and terrorize a camp full of teenagers trying to enjoy some pubescent hi-jinx.

The Flames, like so many of those tacky sideshow villains just won't lie down, as the Flames rose from the proverbial dead, spanking the Sharks 3-0 and taking a 3-2 lead in the series, with one win to go to the Stanley Cup Finals.

Speaking of monsters, the Flames two most controversial stars of the silver screen, the Wolfman Chris Simon, and the club's Dr. Hyde Ville Nieminen, both led the way in staying out of the penalty box, a key to their good start.

The change of events must have been somewhat shocking to Shark coach Ron Wilson, who was downright giddy after game four, smirking as he announced the momentum firmly on the Sharks side, and star winger Jarome Iginla all but befuddled.

Yet it was the alleged straight jacketed Iginla who turned a giveaway from Shark star Vincent Damphousse into a shorthanded breakaway, sliding the puck below the pads of Evgeni Nabokov to score that all important first goal.

"Their top line played well in our building, we knew we had to do more tonight", Craig Conroy told the masses after the game, eluding to the fact that Damphousse, Patrick Marleau and Alex Korolyuk ran roughshod over the Flames in Cowtown.

The Iginla goal came after a strong start from the Flames, seemingly taking a 16-3 shot edge in the third period of game four into their first period tonight, running up a 7-1 shot lead early.

"Once you've let the horses out of the barn, there's not much you can do. You could see it two minutes into the game", Ron Wilson stated in his press conference.

There wasn't much the Sharks could do to contain Ville Nieminen later in the period when he muscled his way through a high stick to the throat, turning on the delayed penalty and feeing centerman Marcus Nilson for a one timer to put the Flames up two.

"Getting two goals is a huge thing, then that third one was great too. Overall a great road game for us", said Craig Conroy after the game.

From there the Sharks were clearly tangled in the Flames road game web, the Flames controlling the play, keeping the shots to the outside, and limiting the Sharks to just a handful of chances.

"We didn't have anyone on the same page, not even in the same chapter of the book", said Wilson

"I don't know why, but we've done this before, and now we get to bounce back on Wednesday night. It's going to be awfully difficult, but we have no other choice now."

The Flames put the game away in the second period when Craig Conroy took advantage of a lazy defensive play by defenceman Kyle McLaren to score his third of the series on a two on one, using Iginla as a decoy.

That was all she wrote.

The Flames now return home in a positive situation, very similar to last week when they swept both games in San Jose, needing home ice success to advance to the Cup Final.

"There team would be smelling blood, going for the knockout, they don't want to come back here for game seven", said Wilson.

For the Flames to get the job done, much like they did against the Detroit Red Wings, they'll have to snap the series streak of road teams winning five straight games.

The Flames are now 8-2 on the road in these playoffs, putting them just two wins short of the NHL record for a playoff season held by the New Jersey Devils of 1995 and 2002.

They are just 3-5 on home ice, however, a horror movie the hometown crowd decked out in blood red just can't bare to see again.






1)Jarome Iginla - Not a game seven versus Vancouver type of performance, but his first period shorthanded goal set his team up for a positive night. 

2)Miikka Kiprusoff - Another bounce back for the story of the year. Kiprusoff wasn't tested all the much but he held the fort on a few chances early to post the shut out. 

3)Jordan Leopold - Great game after being challenged by Darryl Sutter after game four. Leopold had three shots in the first period, made sound decisions in his own zone.

It wasn't pretty, but the timing was impeccable. Miikka Kiprusoff bobbled a Todd Harvey first period offering through his pads in the first period but managed to snow angel on his back and keep the puck out, and the score 1-0.

Johnathan Cheechoo lit up Shean Donovan in the Calgary zone in the third period, slamming the Calgary forward against the glass, and dislodging his helmet.

The Sharks weren't exactly falling all over themselves to give credit to the Flames on their road effort after the game. First Scott Thornton found the tag line used by every opponent in these playoffs when he uttered, "they just out worked us tonight". Later Vincent Damphousse stated, "it wasn't their game, it was our game tonight". ... Kiprusoff moves into a tie with Nikolai Khabibulin in these playoffs with four shut outs, a new Flame franchise record. ... The Flames are now 3-0 in game fives in these playoffs. ... The Flames played their 100th game of the season, not including preseason. Who'd a thunk? ... I'm not one to give kudos to Team Leaf Nation when it comes to Hockey Night in Canada broadcasters, but the Bob Cole - Harry Neale crew was by far the best we've seen in Calgary coverage these playoffs. Stay away Mr. Millen. Don't come a calling Mr. Healy. ... The San Jose Sharks have now lost four straight playoff home games, while the Flames will be looking to snap a streak that has them losing two straight Dome matches themselves, and three of the last four dating back to the Wings series. ... Have to wonder if Kzsyz Oliwa for Dave Lowry would be an astute roster move for the sixth game, the likeable Lowry seems a step behind in this series. ... The top Calgary defensive duo, that of Robyn Regehr and Jordan Leopold, was once again limited in terms of ice time tonight. The due did pull in 24 and 21 minutes respectively, but were surpassed by Andrew Ference (27:41) and Rhett Warrener (25:47). ... The Flames lost the battle of the dot tonight, taking only 47% of the draws. 

Gelinas Conroy Iginla 
Nieminen Nilson Donovan 
Simon Yelle Clark 
Lowry Kobasew Saprykin

Regehr Montador 
Ference Commodore 
Warrener Leopold

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