I’ve been a little behind in updating the site. It’s really quite amazing how difficult it has become to find 5 free minutes to write down some grumblings on the Flames. Of course, since I PVR most of the games it sometimes takes me some time to catch up, but I did that last night. Watching most of the loss to the Ducks, at least the parts where we repeatedly gave up leads and Hiller let in soft goals.
Oh yeah, how bad has the penalty kill been as of late? It feels as though every game Calgary is giving up 2-3 powerplay goals, and you aren’t going to win much like that.
Minnesota Wild at Calgary Flames
Minnesota will try to win back-to-back games for the first time since December 31. The Wild ended an eight-game losing streak with a 5-2 win against the Vancouver Canucks on Monday in John Torchetti’s debut as interim coach. Devan Dubnyk, who won for the first time in his past nine starts Monday, is the expected starter. He is 9-5-3 with a 2.23 goals-against average and a .922 save percentage in 18 career games against his hometown Flames.
Kris Russell will be further evaluated after a lower-body injury kept him out of the 6-4 loss to the Anaheim Ducks on Monday. Russell, who is second in the NHL with 174 blocked shots, is considered day-to-day. Mikael Backlund and Michael Frolik did not participate in practice Tuesday and are questionable. Goaltender Karri Ramo will undergo an MRI for a lower-body injury sustained against the San Jose Sharks on Thursday and is out indefinitely. Jonas Hiller will start in goal for the foreseeable future.
Anaheim Ducks 6, Calgary Flames 4
Considered longshots before the Christmas break, the Anaheim Ducks moved two points closer to first place in the Pacific Division with a 6-4 win against the Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome on Monday.
Mike Santorelli scored twice and Frederik Andersen made 33 saves for the Ducks, who remained in second place in the division but pulled to within five points of the first place Los Angeles Kings. The Ducks have gone 16-4-2 since the Christmas break.
Arizona Coyotes 4, Calgary Flames
In a game where the Flames needed a win, they instead really stunk up the joint.
Jonas Hiller made 32 saves for Calgary (25-26-3), which had its three-game winning streak ended. The Flames took 10 penalties and gave up three power-play goals for the second straight night.
Shane Doan had two goals and an assist to become the all-time points leader in franchise history, and Coyotes ended a five-game losing streak with a 4-1 win against the Calgary Flames at Gila River Arena on Friday.