Stanley Cup Game Day: Calgary at Tampa Bay - GAME #5
Calgarypuck Playoff Coverage 2004

Marc Ciampa
June 3rd, 2004

The series is tied 2-2, the Flames have their backs up against the wall with a tough road game ahead of them and Ville Nieminen out of the lineup due to a suspension.

You'll have to excuse Calgary fans for experiencing a little bit of déjà vu. Tonight, (CBC/ABC, 6:00 p.m. MT) the Flames wade into familiar territory with a difficult task on enemy ice and a series tied 2-2. With so much more on the line this round, including a Stanley Cup, this may be the most difficult game the Flames have had to win in these playoffs.

However, they should also remember the only goal Tampa Bay scored in the past two games was on a five-on-three power play. The defence seems to be doing its job and the offence needs to work on its finish around the net.


  • Discipline: The Flames penalty killing has been very good this round, but they still need to play more disciplined. As the Lightning have shown, if you give them enough opportunities - especially five-on-three - they're going to burn you.
  • Finishing touch: The Flames played one of their best games of the playoffs territorially Monday, but lacked any sort of finish around the net. They need to remedy that tonight.
  • Conroy: Out of his 15 points in the playoffs, 10 have come in games five, six or seven. It's his time to step up.


The advantage has switched over to the Lightning in terms of historical odds in winning this series. With the series tied 2-2, the team with home ice advantage over the final three games has a 14-2 all-time record in the Stanley Cup Final (.875). The only two road teams to come back and win a series tied 2-2 was the 1967 Toronto Maple Leafs (over Montreal) and the 1971 Montreal Canadiens (over Chicago). The road team's record in Game 5 is 13-3 (.813) in this situation… On the other hand, over the Calgary Flames history they have a 7-2 series record and an 8-1 Game 5 record when a series is tied 2-2. They have also won their last four Game fives in that situation. Through their history, the Tampa Bay Lightning have a 2-1 series record in Game 5 situations when the series is tied 2-2. They also have a 2-1 record in Game 5.


A number of trends from this year's Stanley Cup Finals seem to be leading back to the other two times the Flames made an appearance in the fourth round of the playoffs.

The team splitting the first two games on home ice as Tampa Bay did, have ended up winning the series each of the last eight times this has occurred. The start of the streak was in 1989 when the Flames split with Montreal at home and ended up taking the series in six games. The last team to split the first two games at home and lose the series? The 1986 Calgary Flames.

Game 2 had more total penalty minutes in a single Stanley Cup Finals playoff game since the infamous bench-clearing brawl in Game 4 of the 1986 Finals between Calgary and Montreal. This series also has the most fighting majors (six) than any other Finals series since the Flames and Habs racked up eight in '86.

The score in Game 4 in 1986 mirrored the score on Tuesday, 1-0, not in favour of the Flames.


Calgary: Dean McAmmond (back), Denis Gauthier (leg) and Steve Reinprecht (shoulder) are all out for the rest of the season. Matthew Lombardi (concussion) is out and Toni Lydman (concussion) is a longshot to return in Game 6 or Game 7.

Tampa Bay: Ruslan Fedotenko (facial injuries) and Vincent Lecavalier (head) are probable. Pavel Kubina (upper body) is questionable.


When Brad Richards scored on Monday, he set a new single-season NHL record for game-winning goals in the playoffs with his seventh. Richards had one GWG against the Islanders, two against Montreal, two against Philadelphia and now two against Calgary. He eclipsed the total of six by Joe Sakic (1996) and Joe Nieuwendyk (1999). The Lightning are now 8-0 in the playoffs when Richards scores, which is an obvious stat when you consider he has seven game winners, and 30-0-2 overall including the regular season… Kiprusoff isn't the only one who bounces back as Khabibulin is 6-0 following a loss in these playoffs with a 0.83 goals-against average and .968 save percentage with two shutouts… How important is Game 5? The team winning Game 5 when the series is tied 2-2 has a 14-4 record all-time (77.8%)… The four teams who overcame a Game 5 defeat to win the Stanley Cup were Detroit (1950), Toronto (1964), Montreal (1971) and Colorado (2001). Of those teams, only Montreal had to overcome additional odds to win Game 7 on the road… If the Flames can pull off a road win tonight, they will tie the 1995 New Jersey Devils for most road victories in a playoff season with ten.


"One less Fin. Fewer vowels."
- Flames head coach and GM Darryl Sutter on how different the Flames are without Nieminen in the lineup.

"They are very good on the road. Just because we have home ice two out of three doesn't mean anything. We got to treat it like a Game 7 because they have shown they can come in and win Game 5s on the road. They have done it every series, so that's what we're worried about."
- Brad Richards on what the Lightning need to do to win tonight.

"Hey, the media is a powerful tool, believe me. And it's unfortunate that's what ends up -- you know, I hold myself responsible because I don't bitch and whine in the media. I don't let our players talk about officiating in the media. You know, it would be better off making headlines about other incidents and I don't. We never complained about -- quite honest, a lot of you guys didn't even know about some of the injuries until the next day, and you don't know their bad hits until we bring it up after the fact. So, that's something I have learned that you should bitch and complain and whine and it has an impact."
- Sutter again.


Best-of-seven series tied 2-2

May 31: Tampa Bay 1 at Calgary 0
Tampa Bay: Richards (Khabibulin 29 shots, 29 saves)
Calgary: None (Kiprusoff 19 shots, 18 saves)

May 29: Tampa Bay 0 at Calgary 3
Tampa Bay: None (Khabibulin 18 shots, 15 saves)
Calgary: Simon, Donovan, Iginla (Kiprusoff 21 shots, 21 saves)

May 27: Calgary 1 at Tampa Bay 4
Calgary: Nieminen (Kiprusoff 31 shots, 27 saves)
Tampa Bay: Fedotenko, Richards, Boyle, St. Louis (Khabibulin 19 shots, 18 saves)

May 25: Calgary 4 at Tampa Bay 1
Calgary: Gelinas, Iginla, Yelle, Simon (Kiprusoff 24 shots, 23 saves)
Tampa Bay: St. Louis (Khabibulin 19 shots, 15 saves)

Tampa Bay won the season series 1-0-0-0

January 24: Tampa Bay 6 at Calgary 2
Calgary: McAmmond, Gelinas (Turek 29 shots, 23 saves)
Tampa Bay: St. Louis (3), Fedotenko, Richards, Taylor (Grahame 20 shots, 18 saves)


1989 Stanley Cup Finals (Flames win series 4-2)

May 14 Montreal Canadiens 2 at Calgary Flames 3
May 17 Montreal Canadiens 4 at Calgary Flames 2
May 19 Calgary Flames 3 at Montreal Canadiens 4
(Ryan Walter scored at 18:08 of the second overtime)
May 21 Calgary Flames 4 at Montreal Canadiens 2
May 23 Montreal Canadiens 2 at Calgary Flames 3
May 25 Calgary Flames 4 at Montreal Canadiens 2

1986 Stanley Cup Finals (Canadiens win series 4-1)

May 16 Montreal Canadiens 2 at Calgary Flames 5
May 18 Montreal Canadiens 3 at Calgary Flames 2
(Brian Skrudland scored at 0:09 of the first overtime)
May 20 Calgary Flames 3 at Montreal Canadiens 5
May 22 Calgary Flames 0 at Montreal Canadiens 1
May 24 Montreal Canadiens 4 at Calgary Flames 3

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