Another lunch time post, brought to you by... Hipcheck. Read, enjoy, and please ignore any typing/spelling/grammatical errors. :)
The goalies facing off last night were of course Kippersoff and Bryzgalov. I have to admit I have a bigger goalie crush on the Kipper than I do on Bryz. Bryz made me far too nervous watching the game last night. There were a few times that I almost had to close my eyes (but more on that later).
My keys to the game were: take a hit to make a play, skate fast and don't be afraid to hit the people in Flames jerseys (fans, players it really doesn't matter).
The game started off rough, only about 3 minutes in and Calgary scored it's first goal. I was having visions on an on-slaught, visions of Bryz falling apart but I tried to force those images out of my head and focus on the boys actually winning (it helped to have a chat room of friends also watching the game to commiserate with and then to laugh at stupid things).
At one point, Bryz looked like he was going to cover the puck, forcing the whistle (everyone I was talking to thought this too and it looked like the guys on the ice thought that too) but instead he throws it up the ice. It was almost stolen by a Flame. He also looked slow to get up at times, just slow to react period.
The coyotes went on the PK soon after the Flames goal and were able to get a short handed goal. Tiki blocked the pass/shot and DMo was able to grab it. He raced up the ice, shot and that puck sailed to the back of the net. After the goal, they were calling it an unassisted goal (and I don't know if it was ever changed) but Tiki deserves an assist on that one. If it wasn't for him, DMo may not have had that opportunity to take the puck and shoot.
We also got to see that Carcillo has not escaped persecution yet. He has been on his best behavior this year (maybe why he hasn't scored yet) but the refs can not leave well enough alone. He was trying to avoid a head on collision with a Flames player, so he tried to move out of the way. They still collided but it wasn't as bad as it could have been. He was called for tripping, yes tripping, because the other player went over Carcillo's leg when they tried to avoid the hit. WTF? Total crap. That should not have been a tripping call against Carcillo, it should have been no call on either player (although I did later joke when Carcillo ran into one our own players - they have been doing this a lot lately, poor communication? - that he should get called for tripping against his own guy. Yah, I made a couple people laugh with that one).
Doan did try to get another shorty with a nice breakaway but his shot seemed to be pretty easy for Kipper to stop.
Ugh, I got so sick of the announcers talking about Jovo. Jovo this, Jovo that. Jovo needs to get a point. They basically said that he needs to be partnered with Z to score and that others need to give him better passes, way to take responsibility Jovo. You are an all star/veteran and can only score with Z or amazing passes? What will you ever do if you or Z is traded? Or if Z leaves as a FA? You are a professional, act like one.
After a face off, Murray and Carcillo both went to throw down. Carcillo didn't end up going but Murray did (he even looked to see if Carcillo was fighting...planned much?). Murray was throwing some pretty hard punches at Nystrom. Some people may have called it a draw because they both hit the ice about the same time, but Murray clearly got in much better (and harder) punches and was about to get up and keep going before the linesmen seperated them.
After the fight, Doan scores. He just kept pushing at the puck and I swear it went in just be the sheer force of him willing it to go in. It got behind Kipper's skate and Doan just kept poking until it crossed the line.
Unfortunately, the lead did not last long. I was watching Bryz and I noticed how slowly he was moving and I knew they were going to score. Jovo turned the puck over on a pass out of their zone, the Flames grabbed it and went for it.
We end the first tied 2-2.
At the start of the second, Carcillo and Fridge collide (what? no penalty for Carcillo this time? oh yah, because that last one was bull crap). I really think our guys need to communicate better. They have been running into each other like crazy lately. There were a few more collisions last night amongst are guys but Carcillo and Fridge was probably the worse, as in hard.
We go on the PP and Jovo FINALLY scores. Mueller did a great job keeping the puck in, which they have been horrible about backing off too soon. Sometimes they could have kept the puck in or challeneged the player but they chose to back off too often.
For a short period a number of Flame players (including Phaneuf were trying to get to Carcillo. They were pushing, shoving, talking smack but he just wouldn't go. Yah, but you know, he's still the same guy and he hasn't matured. Oh wait, why am I listening to the trolls? Oh because it's funny!
Finally we pull ahead with a goal by Rhino. He received a beautiful pass from Porter (we need to keep these two together!) and did a couple of forehand/backhands and then put it in the net. It was gorgeous, just a gorgeous goal set up by a beauty of a pass.
The goal couldn't have come at a better time. The Flames were trying to tire the Coyotes out, but they just kept persisting. I woudl say some credit needs to go to the line of Carcillo-Murray-Fridge, as they were out there for an extended period of time and the Flames wouldn't let them change. They finally get a chance to change and Rhino, Bods and Porter come out strong. Great teamwork boys!
At the end of the second, it was 4-2 Coyotes.
Calgary attempted a breakaway in the third but somehow Bryz was able to make the save. Our boys came out a little more recharged after the second (they may have got a couple of goals, but they looked tired, dead tired).
I don't have much else to say about the third. They stayed in the game and made the Flames work. Also, I didn't notice Jokinen was even in the game until about 10 minutes into the third. I need him to be more consistant. He plays some great games (2 goals agains MN) but then seems to disappear in others.
Also, I am glad Turris sat this game out. Murray was the center we needed. Turris is expected back for the Vancouver game and I hope to see a repeat of what happened with Mueller early last season. I am not sure which center they will sit to accommodate Vancouver but I am guessing Murray (Rhino is on fire but Murray is better at face offs then our other centers). Jokinen will never be a healthy scratch and Hanzal has been doing so well, so I don't see either of them sitting tomorrow.
I am not sure what to expect from Vancouver. I haven't been paying much attention to them. They key in this game should be to shut down the twins and keep throwing the pucks at Luango. Those are the three main guys to watch out for. Also, Pyatt can be a little bit sneaky.
Obama wins it!!! I have been here to see history in the making. And Palin can go back to Alaska and make them miserable and leave me alone! ok, /political talk