The Calgary Flames took on the Dallas Stars in what was to be one of the toughest road games this trip. With Karri Ramo in net, the Flames hoped to extend their win streak to six and continue the forward momentum. The Stars would push the Flames and the Flames would push right back, proving that they won't go quietly into that good night.
Like usual, the Flames couldn't seem to get the puck out of their end in the first few minutes. T.J. Brodie took a huge hit from Benn that didn't seem to hurt too much at the time, but I'm sure he's probably feeling it today. Michael Ferland came out hitting, fighting fire with fire, and showing the Stars that the Flames were there to win. And Sam Bennett also showed some grit in the first period after a good chance on net. The Flames may not have been skating hard or fast (which could have been a good or bad thing), but they were playing simple, smart hockey and getting a few chances at the Stars net. But the wind was taken out of their sails when the Stars earned a short-handed goal. And just like the wind in Alberta, it didn't take long for the Flames to change into offensive mode. Kris Russell passed the puck up from behind the Calgary net, which set up a 2 on 1 for Sean Monahan and David Jones. The intensity in Monahan's face was obvious that he picked his spot and went top shelf on Lehtonen to tie the game at 1-1. Not long afterwards, the Stars had a bad line change that opened the door for the Flames in which Dougie Hamilton capitalized, making the score 2-1 Flames heading into the second period.
Ferland played a feisty game of hockey again last night which, I believe, gave the Flames some spark that led to their best power play of the season so far even though there were no goals. Most of the second period was a lot of back and forth by both teams, neither making big mistakes that would change the score. Dennis Wideman, in an out-of-character move, got into a little scuffle with Sharp that led to a 5 minute penalty for each. Not long afterwards, Mason Raymond showed his skills with some fancy moves that resulted in a goal. The Flames were up 3-1 going into the last frame.
The Joe Colborne, Michael Ferland, Matt Stajan line was easily the most productive line to start the final period and Ramo stole the show in the last 20 minutes making huge saves to keep the Flames alive. Benn was slamming into Brodie again, as he had been all game long. A bad call on Deryk Engelland (which was more coincidental contact than a penalty) tested Ramo as the Stars came out swinging, but the goaltender showed poise and confidence, keeping the score at 3-1 throughout the Flames penalty kill. I think we all took a collective gasp when Monahan was hit in the face with the puck, but it only shook him up for a few minutes and he didn't miss any ice time. It was all Dallas to end the third period, but they couldn't push hard enough to get past Ramo. The Calgary Flames by a score of 3-1.
Flame Of The Game
TJ Brodie. Taking hits, blocking shots, clearing the zone, and doing all those things that we expect of him plus more. Even after shots on the Flames net, he keeps the puck in play by picking up blocked shots and rebounds and creates plays at the other end of the ice. He's become an amazingly well-rounded defenseman in his few seasons with the Flames. It's rare that Brodie has a bad game and last night was a testament to how great of a blue-liner he really is.
The Flames travel to St. Louis to take on the Blues on Saturday afternoon and then head to Detroit to take on the Red Wings Sunday night.