Managing The Rink – Let’s Review, Calgary Flames

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It’s supposed to be a quiet week at home with the kid, but, as always, shit just keeps coming up. 

MM has a hockey game tonight. I have a dentist appointment on Thursday. My grandma and mother are coming for tea today. Son has basketball on Sunday. And the renovation guys will be in and out of my house all week. 

Now that I think about it, this is indeed a quiet week. 

It’s such a quiet week that I sat down last night and watched an entire NHL game, from start to finish. 

The Flames were on a rip last night in the first period, scoring 3 goals to the Predators 1. With two goals by Micheal Ferland and one by Mikael Backlund, the Flames took a quick 3-1 lead. The Calgary team showed promise and gave the fan base hope after 20 minutes. 

And then it all came crashing down. 

True to form, the Flames looked like a train wreck in the second period which made me wonder if they’d recover at all. Calgary allowed 4 unanswered goals in the middle frame and didn’t bother yanking Elliott from net or even taking a timeout. On the flip side, Forsberg looked like a local hero with a natural hat trick before the end of the period. It was 5-4 for Nashville after 40 minutes. 

Because the Flames are never the team to roll over and play dead, Calgary took the bull by the horns and tied the game halfway through the final period to force overtime. After being up 4-1 in the second period and blowing a significant lead, I didn’t have much hope that they’d come out victorious. But they did when Giordano slapped one home and the Flames walked away with two points. 

The Flames are now only one point behind the Predators in the wildcard race. And, unless they can pull a miracle out of their butts, I don’t have high hopes for a post-season. Especially now that Hathaway has been sent back down to Stockton. 

Hathaway brought a grittiness that seems to be lacking this season. With the exception of last night’s game (Ferland’s fisticuffs and Bennett’s brawl), the Flames are soft this year. Hathaway brought the truculence that Burke had previously spoken about and wanted on the team. 

The addition of Stone and Bartkowski is new and therefore I can’t really comment after only one game. They definitely have the potential to make up for the lack of Wideman. Although, I didn’t hear anyone complain at all about Wideman sitting out. For good reason. 

From what I understand, most fans consider Wideman a liability at this point. Good timing for Francis’s tweet about other teams being interested in Wideman. Some were happy about the tweet, others took it with a little disbelief. Time will tell what’s really going on. And I’ll believe it when I see it. Until then, I won’t hold my breath. 

It was nice to see Gaudreau earn some points is last night’s tilt. I don’t necessarily believe he was in a slump, but his production level seemed to have tapered off for a while. And I’m happy he’s back on track. My only hope is that he remains consistent. 

I doubt I’ll be watching much more NHL hockey this season until playoffs begin, but the race seems tight and whomever earns that coveted wildcard spot will surely deserve it. 

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