After a less-than-stellar four-game road trip, where the Flames ended up with a record of 0-3-1, it was time to settle back into the comforts of home as the Calgary Flames hosted the New Jersey Devils tonight.
The first half of the period was equal amounts of pressure from both sides, but the Flames had the edge with an opening goal by T.J. Brodie to put the Flames on the board. A few costly mistakes by the visiting team led Calgary to net another goal and it was 2-0. Matt Stajan potted the second one and I do believe I called it last game recap with his forceful play and focus on the task at hand. I noticed Cammalleri still has his amazing speed and knee-drop zingers, luckily Karri Ramo and the Flames defensive team were prepared for it and he couldn't bury it in the back of the net. The home team was up by two at the end of the opening period.
A bad turnover by the Devils to start the second period led to the Flames entering the zone and getting set up. Dougie Hamilton had a good chance at the net but shot wide - again. After even more pressure on the home team, the Devils cut the lead 2-1. New Jersey owned the first few minutes of the period, but, as is the trend, the puck went the other way and Flames scored again. David Jones put the Flames up by two again with his 100th goal. After a weak call on Michael Ferland for interference, the Devils scored again when Stempniak and Cammalleri set up Tootoo. It was a complete gut-punch by the two former Flames players to set up that goal. Ramo had a problem holding onto rebounds again in the middle frame, but the defense was on point and helped keep the game in favour of the Flames. Joe Colborne and David Jones were impressive tonight. Colborne crashed the net, allowing for the Devils defense to be thrown off their game and Jones' focus has been tough to match. The period ended 3-2 in favour of Calgary.
What could have been a potential mess for the Flames ended up being a really strong third period. In spite of Hamilton's holding penalty, Brodie stepped up again with his awe-inspiring skating skills to create a breakaway chance. It seemed that he didn't get enough wood on the puck and wasn't able to score, but that didn't deter anyone from singing his praises. Later on, he would draw a penalty out of Stempniak. I think we can all agree that T.J. Brodie is still one of the best defensemen in the league again this season. The Devils pushed the Flames to the edge, but the home team pushed back in a big way and the drama increased in the final few minutes of the third period. It was intense hockey to end a great home game for the Calgary Flames who took the win with a score of 3-2.
Flame Of The Game
David Jones. With two points in tonight's game (1g, 1a), Jones not only helped the Flames to win, but he also notched a milestone 100 NHL goals. He has the most goals of all Calgary players (7) and he earned the fire helmet in the dressing room tonight. Congrats to such a hard worker!
The Flames host the Chicago Blackhawks for another chance to even out this match-up on Friday before they head out on another road trip the week after.
Go Flames Go!