With the new season a short 3 weeks away and nothing much else to think about, my thoughts have gone back to some of the best parts of the previous season. Sure, the team fell apart down the stretch and the ultimate result was disappointing, but there was definitely some memorable moments peppered throughout the year. Following are the bits that stand out for me, but feel free to add your own.
1.) October 17 - Flames lose 5-4 in OT to the hated Canucks, but the outcome is almost rendered moot when Jarome Iginla one-punches Willie Mitchell to his knees. Probably one of the most decisive pugilistic victories in Iginla's career.
2.) November 27 - Mike Cammalleri scores his first career hat trick en route to a 4-3 win over the Canucks, but the real reason this game stands out for me is the GWG scored by Curtis Glencross - not only because he stole an errant pass at Vancouver's own blueline to score it, but because of the classic celebration (refered to as "the scoreface" in some circles) afterward.
3.) December 9 - Dustin Boyd scores the only goal of the game for the Flames against the Montreal Canadiens. It's a diving header and good for a few highlight reels. As an added bonus, Boyd broke some dudes arm in the same game with a hit along the boards.
4.) December 17 - In what might rightly be called Calgary's play of the year, Daymond Langkow dives at center ice and one-hands a pass to Bertuzzi, who scores the OT GWG on the ensuing break-away. If there was one good thing about Bertuzzi last year, he was money on break-aways.
5.) January 6 - The Flames positively curb-stomp the Sharks in their own building, handing them their first regulation loss at home all year. This win was significant, because it was the 6-1 loss to the Sharks that marked a "turn-around" in the Flames season earlier in the year. David Moss and company were particularly dominant in this game, with he and Glencross managing a combined 4 points (3 goals, 1 assist), +4 and 11 shots. If I remember correctly, their corsi ratings were through the roof for this contest as well (what's more, neither of them played more than 12 minutes that night).
6.) February 9 - The Canadiens were in full meltdown mode when they stumbled into the Saddledome and the Flames were merciless. I have fond memories of Boyd and Lombardi scoring back-to-back shorthanded break-away goals in the second period. Lombo, who almost always plays well against the Habs, ended the game with 4 points and a +4 rating.
7.) February 21 - With about a minute remaining in the third period, Lombardi lobs a shoulder-high shot at Roloson and scores the game tying goal, paving the way for the Flames SO win and what was surely a gut-punch loss for Oilers fans. Bonus points for the beauty Cory Sarich feed to Jarome Iginla on the Flames first goal.
8.) March 3 - Calgary beats up on Ottawa - again - but, perhaps more interestingly, David Moss scores his first career hat trick. Again, with relatively minimal ice time of course (12:42).
9.) March 12 - At once the most exciting and infuriating regular season game of the year, the Flames fall behind 4-1 to the Detroit Red Wings in Detroit thanks to a combination of poor discipline, shoddy officiating and mediocre goaltending. I almost didn't watch this game after the second period I was so convinced the club was going to lose. Luckily I stuck it out and was rewarded with one of the best comebacks I've witnessed in recent memory - one led by, of all players, Jamie Lundmark who scored twice in the third period. Given the fact that he's now buried in Abbotsford, this performance may go down as the best of Lundmark's modest NHL career.
This game may also have been the high water mark for Jokinen, who also scored twice and added the SO winner for good measure. It's one of those contests I'd probably re-watch for years afterwards had I been lucky enough to record it.
10.) April 11 - Playing behind an exhausted and depleted club and with nothing on the line but pride, Curtis McElhinney stands on his head against the Edmonton Oilers and - finally - earns his first career win.
Obviously this list isn't definitive or exhaustive - just some stuff that stuck out for me. Any obvious omissions folks?