Games Takes: Flames 5 Panthers 2

January 17th, 2017 | Posted in Game Takes | By: D'Arcy McGrath

Playoff teams avoid skids.

Three, four and five game losing streaks can take the wind out of what looks like a good season, rendering a good stretch balanced out with other teams earning points and taking away playoff spots. With that the Flames were out to end a two game losing streak, albeit the last one with a shoot out that earned the team a point.

So with a great response and a thorough pounding of the Florida Panthers by a 5-2 score all is well in Flames land again, as a potential three game losing streak is wiped out, giving the team points in three of the last four instead.

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Game Takes: Oilers 2 Flames 1 (SO)

January 14th, 2017 | Posted in Game Takes | By: D'Arcy McGrath

Gretzky over the shoulder of Mike Vernon (sorry), Theo Fleury sliding down the ice, epic moments in Calgary Edmonton history for sure. Tonight certainly didn’t hold up to that standard, but for the first time in 11 years the Flames and Oilers met in a game past the midway point with both teams in a playoff spot. How sad is that? 11 years!

With the LA Kings and Nashville Predators behind both Alberta teams the push will be arduous down the stretch but for the time being the Flames and Oilers are both now teams once again, a great return to a rivalry.

In recent years the two teams have clashed in high scoring affairs, but tonight the two teams ground out a tense 2-1 Oilers win in a shoot out, with both clubs clearly understanding the importance of the game in the standings both tonight and the rest of the way.

They get back at it next weekend in Calgary, fun to see these two dormant giants go at it again.

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Game Takes: Devils 2 Flames 1

January 13th, 2017 | Posted in Game Takes | By: D'Arcy McGrath

Margins are tight in the NHL these days. With three point games and all out parity day to day results can do a lot for and against your standing and season outlook.

Last night the Edmonton Oilers scored a third period goal to force overtime and then beat the Devils on a Leon Draisaitl overtime marker. Tonight the Flames come out leave a complete stinker on the ice, gifting two points to the Devils in a 2-1 loss and giving the Oilers four points in the standings essentially in 24 hours.

The two teams match up tomorrow night in Edmonton, and if you have to reach for a silver lining it would be a an angry team looking for retribution after letting the Saddledome crowd down tonight.

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Games Takes: Flames 3 Sharks 2

January 11th, 2017 | Posted in Game Takes | By: D'Arcy McGrath

Teams love measuring sticks, acid tests, the ability to see where they are against top competition. The Flames have had a pretty light schedule of late with many games against weak opponents sprinkled with the odd game against a tough match up.

With the Sharks in town and sharing a lead at the top of the Pacific the Flames can do many things; 1) win their fourth in a row on home ice 2) keep their recent streak alive of making sure they don’t drop two in a row 3) make some gains on the top of their division and quite interestingly 4) make the Saturday night matchup against the Oilers ultra intense by moving closer to the their provincial rivals with a match up looming.

It wasn’t pretty, and it was certainly more intense than Glen Gulutzan would have hoped but the Flames gutted out a 3-2 regulation win over the Sharks on Wednesday night, in a game that could have easily gone the other way.

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Game Takes: Jets 2 Flames 0

January 9th, 2017 | Posted in Game Takes | By: D'Arcy McGrath

Playoff games take place in April. If your team succeeds they stretch into May and in recent years all the way to June.

So when it’s suggested two teams locked in for a playoff type game in January it should be taken with a grain of salt. The Winnipeg Jets, in arrears of the Flames in the standings, certainly treated this one as a playoff game, as the club looked to pick itself up and move on without rookie Patrick Laine who was dropped by an open ice hit in Buffalo on the weekend.

The game was physical, fast paced, and neither team gave an inch though the home side was much more effective at finishing in a 2-0 victory in Manitoba on Monday night. The win moves the Jets to just one point back of the L.A. Kings for the final wildcard spot as the West grew tighter with Jets and Stars victories while the Flames and Kings went down to defeats.

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