Skid Halts at One; Flames Win Shoot Out in Denver
Flames 2 - Avalanche 2

D'Arcy McGrath
November 21, 2005

What have you done lately?

A common phrase in all acts of life, but also a comment attributed to professional sports and high expectations placed by fans, media and the players themselves.

The Flames fresh off an eight game winning streak should be afforded a blip once and a while like they suffered on Friday night in losing to the Chicago Blackhawks, but two in a row? Now that's a negative streak, and not acceptable.

And so the Flames took to the ice in Denver to take on division rival Colorado on Monday night, but avoided that losing shtick by winning a shoot out thriller by a score of 3-2.

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On The Line

A lot in a mad mad Western Conference race that does anything but afford a team to take a night off ... let alone two in a row. The Flames had to know they'd lose sooner or later, but dropping two in a row can wipe out a lot of confidence in a NHL dressing room.

The Flow

Ideal if you're a Flames fan. The visitors jumped out and took the play to the Avalanche early, then used a few man advantage opportunities to press the play and stake themselves to a 2-0 first period lead. However, much like the last time these two teams got together, one team's domination in one period is sure to be followed by the other team taking over in the next as the home squad fought its way back, finally tying things up and sending the game to overtime.

Three Stars

1 - Jordan Leopold. Goal and assist on the night, his first big offensive night of the season, and a hand in both of the Flames' goals that count.
2 - Rob Blake. Starting to reclaim his game in the new NHL, tied the game up in the third and led the Avalanche with six shots on goal.
3 - Philipe Sauve. Scrappy backup faced an onslaught as his former team through kitchen sink at the Flames in the second period, but only gave up the one middle frame goal. Big win for the understudy.

Big Hit

Not a real crash and bang affair, but Bryan Marchment's hit on an undetermined Avalanche forward prompted his third period scrap with Ian Laperriere.

Big Save

With the Avalanche on a third period powerplay looking for the tying goal, a miscue at the blueline let Byron Ritchie step in alone, but he was turned away by Colorado backup Peter Budaj. There were many fine saves in this one, but none came at a more important time for the stopper's club.

The Goat

Flames "finish" guys lacked finish again, as least until Toni Amonte hit the twine in the shoot out. However, this lack of finish from players like Jarome Iginla, and most notably Daymond Langkow could have cost the team the hockey game.

Mr. Clutch

Flame penatly killers, turning the Avalanche aside on all five of their chances on the night. Especially huge towards the second half of the game with the homeside starting rack up the chances. Notable penalty killers included Marcus Nilson, Robyn Regehr and game star Jordan Leopold, all of which were on the ice for at least half of the shorthanded minutes.

Odds and Ends

Avalanche rookie Marek Svatos has scored four goals in this, his rookie season, three coming against the Flames. ... Figures for Jordan Leopold, pointless for the team's first 17 games, one point in the teams first 22, and two points in the first half of the first period tonight, tripling his season output. ... Bryan Marchment, in his return to a Calgary uniform after suffering an as of yet not disclosed injury, had a spirited scrap with fellow vet Ian Laperriere in the third period. Neither a heavy weight but many many punches landed. ... All seven dressed defencemen had at least 11 minutes of ice time tonight. ... The Avalanche out shot the Flames by a narrow 35-34 margin, with Calgary holding a 13-5 lead after 20, 21-20 after 40, only to be down 33-28 after regulation time. The Flames had a 6-2 edge in the extra session. ... Both Joe Sakic and Chuck Kobasew lost the handle in the shoot out. ... The Flames won 52% of the draws on the night with Stephane Yelle, Jarome Iginla and believe it or not Daymond Langkow leading the way. Some extra time in practice for #22? ... With the win the Flames leapfrog the Vancouver Canucks and into first place in the Northwest division with 29 points. Every other team does have games in hand however. They have the 2nd most points in the West, with Detroit having 32. ... The Avalanche are tied with the Oilers for 7th spot in the West. The Flames only sit five points up on a playoff spot to give you an idea of how tight things are. ... Nothing more important than points in your own division. The Flames have now defeated all four fellow Northwest division teams twice, and have an 8-2-0 record so far this season. ... The final marked the third time the Flames have gone to extra time this season, and the first time they've won. There other two extra time games featured a home ice loss in OT, and a shoot out loss in San Jose. 

Next up - The San Jose Sharks come a calling to the Saddledome on Wednesday; 7 pm start.

Lines -

Kobasew- Reinprecht- Iginla
McCarty- Langkow- Amonte
Simon- Yelle- Nilson
Weimer- McDonald - 






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