The Calgary Flames pulled off a win in true Calgary fashion last night against the Vancouver Canucks in game 1. This come-from-behind win is nothing new to the Flames, seeing as this has been their claim to fame, even to the playoffs.
After about two and a half periods of being shut out, Calgary’s David Jones notched a beautiful goal after Michael Ferland forced Vancouver to turn over the puck. Since Vancouver had only one goal from Bo Horvat at this point, the game looked like it was close to going into overtime as the minutes ticked down.
During the regular season, the Flames won 10 times when trailing after 40 minutes. Calgary has made it clear that they should never be counted out.The game winning goal from defenseman Kris Russell, with 29.6 seconds left in regulation, proves exactly why. Russell scored on a rocket of a shot from back almost at the blue line on his first shot of the game. Russell skated for 29:07 minutes, just shy of Dennis Wideman’s 30:07 time on ice.
“That’s the kind of style you’ve got to play in the playoff,” Russell said per the Calgary Flames website, “Just get pucks to the net and hopefully they go in.”
Goaltending was a huge factor in the low score of the game. With Eddie Lack in goal for Vancouver and Jonas Hiller for Calgary going into it, both teams knew it would be a good battle. Hiller and Lack each saw 30 shots, but Hiller ultimately came out on top with 29 saves. He made some highlight reel worthy saves and was consistently there when it meant something. One goal against in the second is certainly nothing to be disappointed by when he played like he did.
“They had a few pretty good chances early in the third, and if they score [the] game might be over,” said Hiller, per the Flames website. “Those are the saves you want to make. They can shift the momentum and I think that’s what happened.”
Game two is set for Friday at 8:00 pm PT in Vancouver. Judging by the way the first game went, this whole series is sure to be typical playoff hockey: exciting and unpredictable #BecauseItsTheCup.