Kipper Marvels In Win, Flames Alive

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There may still be hope after all.
Calgary’s 2-1 win over Colorado, coupled with Tampa Bay’s 2-0 win over Chicago, Sunday night, has Flames fans back interested in hockey after a brief lovers’ quarrel last week.
Big thanks to the Lightning, specifically netminder Mike Smith and goal scorers Vincent Lecavalier and Nate Thompson, for today’s win. We still haven’t forgiven you for 2004, nor will we ever, but this was a nice gesture on your behalf in an attempt to heal a strained relationship.
The Flames now have 91 points, one behind Chicago.
The Blackhawks still have two games in hand, but have a relatively difficult schedule remaining, as they head to Montreal Tuesday, host St. Louis (who put up 10 on Detroit last week) on Wednesday, and then play a home-and-home with the Red Wings to close the season.
Calgary’s win now puts life back into its slim playoff aspirations. I called out Olli Jokinen earlier today and he kindly responded by scoring the game’s opening goal in the middle frame.
But once again, it was the top line of Jarome Iginla, Daymond Langkow, in his second game back from injury, and Alex Tanguay that created the team’s best offensive opportunities. Tanguay’s stellar water bottle-shaking goal, his 21st of the season, put Calgary ahead by two, eight minutes into the third.
Milan Hejduk tried to dash the Flames’ hopes, however, when he scored with five minutes left, but netminder Miikka Kiprusoff played his best game in recent memory, making saves 34 saves for his 36th win of the season.
He was outstanding.
It was a great road win for the Flames, who will still need to win both of its remaining games this week to move up to 95 points and give themselves a shot at the postseason. Next up is the old foe, arch nemesis and potential spoiler – the Edmonton Oilers on Wednesday night at the Scotiabank Saddledome. Expect the see of red to be out in full force, as the atmosphere should be as close to playoff-like as you’ll ever get in the regular season.
Let’s hope it’s not the last meaningful game hosted in the province of Alberta this season.