Let's try something different here. I have a poll after the jump asking this question: "Did the Flames play well last night"? Answer the poll first (it's at the bottom of the page), then read my post-game and see if your perception of the game matched mine.
EV Shots On Goal : 9-9
EV Shots Toward Net : 18-18
EV Faceoff Starts : 7-4
EV Shots On Goal : 4-7
EV Shots Toward Net : 12-11
EV Faceoff Starts : 2-3
EV Shots On Goal : 5-7
EV Shots Toward Net : 12-12
EV Faceoff Starts : 3-3
EV Shots On Goal : 18-23
EV Shots Toward Net : 42-41
EV Faceoff Starts : 12-10
Points of discussion:
- For the record, my answer to the poll would be "no". Yeah I know we won, and the goals weren't flukey or anything. But we got pinned in our own zone way too often, mostly due to all of the turnovers at the blueline. When we did manage to get out of our zone, we had a few glorious chances in transition, but other times we had trouble even gaining their zone. And I'm not happy that so many of our other breakouts were stymied like that, and they resulted in glorious NYR scoring chances. I don't even think the Rangers have the best forecheck in the world (that distinction probably belongs to Detroit and Chicago). Our D having to make risky 30 foot passes like they did all night - it points to a lack of forward support, Maddening.
- The Iginla-Jokinen duo spent a lot of time in their own zone (and more time apart as the game went on) - and color me biased, but Jokinen was driving the buss (off the cliff). He was fighting the puck all night, which I can probably overlook (shit happens). But I can't forgive that 15-foot miss on Iginla's sweet feed - what was that??? And his game was totally off. I can't count the number of times he either shied away from a down-low battle if the Flames zone, or simply floated around in the faceoff circle while one of his wingers cleaned up the mess. Either that's a Sutter decision to relieve Jokinen of his position's defensive responsibilities (good for Sutter, but it just highlights Jokinen's weaknesses) or his wingers were simply adjusting (good for the wingers, but it just highlights Jokinen's weaknesses). If Jokinen's not playing injured, then he needs to pull something toot sweet, because there's no excuse otherwise.
- Iginla, on the other hand, was engaged. He's still not 07/08 form, and I didn't get the impresion that he played against Gaborik much, but he was nonetheless battling and creating chances.
- Kiprusoff had another outstanding performance last night. Some of those close-in chances were sure goals, and Kipper guessed right on all of them last night.
- Bourque was a force. Most of the sustained offensive pressure came when Bourque's unit was on the ice, and Bourque played a huge role of keeping cycles alive.
- The Glencross hit on Drury was dangerous and unnecessary. He did have a basis to lay a hit on Drury as the puck was coming across, but it didn't have to be that hit.