by Marc Ciampa
October 17th, 2002


For the first time since 1993, the Boston Bruins are starting the season on the road - a six-game western road swing, at that. Because of the extended road trip, a number of prognosticators predicted the Bruins would have a tough month of October despite finishing second overall in the league in 2001-02. Other factors include a lack of a bona fide number-one netminder with the departure of Byron Dafoe in the offseason. Another is Bill Guerin's move to Dallas.

So far this season the Bruins have shown themselves to be unpredictable at best. They opened the season in Minnesota with a humiliating 5-1 defeat at the hands of the Wild but followed that up with an impressive win against the Western Conference powerhouse Colorado Avalanche on Monday.

Speaking of unpredictable, that pretty much describes the Flames' season to this point. They were horrible in their home opener against Vancouver, played a solid 10 minutes of hockey against the Flyers and were nearly flawless in their defeat of the Canucks on Monday. The home fans are likely anxiously awaiting to see just how good the Calgary Flames can be.

The Flames have a 30-49-9 record all-time against the Bruins.


  • Put Rob Niedermayer on the sidelines once again. His departure from the lineup last game likely wasn’t the sole contributor to the team winning, but if Greg Gilbert wants to have accountability on his team, he needs to reward the players that put together a fine effort Monday.

  • The power play needs to start scoring, penalty killing needs to pick up where it left off. The Flames players were looking very good on the PK Monday, being more aggressive and forcing the opposition to make good plays. They need to keep that up, not only tonight but also for the rest of the season.

  • Jarome Iginla. He’s had a solid start to the season, but one of the keys to the Flames’ incredible 13-2-2-2 start last year was Iginla’s ability to completely dominate and dictate the tempo of a game. We’ve yet to see that this year.


Toni Lydman currently leads the Flames, averaging 25:40 of ice-time per game. In second is Jarome Iginla at 23:01. In Rob Niedermayer's two games, he only averaged 10:06 of ice-time, third-lowest on the team… Craig Conroy currently leads the Flames with 62.5% off of faceoffs. Stephane Yelle is a close second at 60%. … In four all-time meetings, the Boston Bruins have never defeated the Minnesota Wild … The Bruins' current six-game road trip is the longest season-opening road stretch in their history... They have twice opened a season with five-game trips (1943-44, 2-2-1 and 1944-45, 1-3-1). … Mike Knuble scored the Bruins' first goal of the 2002-03 season, which was also the 17,000th goal in the team's 79-year history… Sergei Samsonov's game-winning goal at 19:59 of the third period Oct. 14 in Colorado was the first in the NHL since Mar. 17, 1999 (Keith Tkachuk, Phoenix).


Calgary: Jordan Leopold (concussion) is questionable.

Boston: Rob Zamuner, who missed last night's game due to the birth of his son, is likely to be back in the lineup tonight. Sergei Samsonov (ankle) is probable.


Calgary: Stephane Yelle is really starting to find a comfort zone with the Flames and is doing a good job filling the role many thought Craig Conroy was best suited for when he was acquired from St. Louis. Yelle and forward Mathias Johansson, who has also impressed in his first few games, have been rewarded for their hard work with some power play time. … Chris Drury is tied for the Flames lead in points three games into the season with four but has yet to score a goal. He would love to get his first as a Flame tonight against the Bruins - a team he grew up watching.

Boston: New captain Joe Thornton is poised to have a great season and could explode for a huge performance any game now. Don't forget, last season he was neck-and-neck with Iginla for the league's scoring title until a 12-game absence due to injury and suspension knocked him out of the scoring race. … Goaltender John Grahame will be looking to redeem himself tonight after his poor showing in the season opener against Minnesota. … Last time these two teams met, the Bruins assigned Hal Gill to shadow Iginla. It'll be interesting to see if they employ the same strategy tonight.


"Being able to play in your home town with Mom and Dad and family is something special that not a lot of people are able to do. You think of all the millions of hockey players and how many teams are in the NHL. To end up making the NHL is hard enough and then to play in your hometown ... it's pretty neat. I guess we put more pressure on ourselves because our families are here plus we work hard and we're not superstars. We scratch and claw to be here every single day and I think that adds a lot to the pressure, too." -Flames defenceman Micki DuPont, who scored his first NHL goal Monday against Vancouver.

"Maybe we'll have to give plays names and yell them out like they do in football. Plus, it'll throw the other centres off if we're yelling out, 'Red 22. Red 22.'"-Flames forward Craig Conroy on how the fast faceoff rule has affected his strategy on the ice.


The Flames lost their only meeting against the Bruins last season.

March 9/02 Calgary 2 at Boston 3
Game Winning Goal:Samsonov
Flames Scorers: Savard, Iginla

NEXT MEETING: The Flames and Bruins meet again shortly, on November 26th in Boston.

  Back to
Read other Stories
Talk About it!