Flames 3 Sharks 2: Inside the Game

Notes, quotes and anecdotes from Game 1

Wednesday, 09.04.2008 / 6:57 PM / News
By Torie Peterson  - CalgaryFlames.com (@toriepeterson)
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Flames 3 Sharks 2: Inside the Game
INSIDE THE GAME

CALGARY 3  SAN JOSE 2
GAME AT A GLANCE
SAN JOSE
—  A late goal by Ryan Clowe gave the Flames a scare but Calgary held on and came out with a big 3-2 victory.

Stephane Yelle scored twice for the Flames and Dion Phaneuf got an early power play goal in the win.

The first period started out strong and fast for the Flames. They scored two goals in the first six minutes, giving them a nice lead to work with for the rest of the game.

The first goal came off of a big faceoff win by Yelle. Robyn Regehr got the puck and threw it at the net where Yelle was waiting behind the defense. He tipped the puck down and scored five hole on Evgeni Nabokov. The opening goal came at 2:47 with Regehr getting the lone helper.

Kyle McLaren was called for high-sticking at 5:02 and the Flames were able to capitalize on the power play. Kristian Huselius put the puck on the net and the rebound went right to Jarome Iginla. He batted the puck over to Langkow on the other side of the net and Phaneuf picked up the kick back from the Flames forward. Nabokov was sprawled on the ice, thinking Langkow was going to shoot and Phaneuf saw the golden opportunity to put his club up by two. He wasted no time in putting the puck over Nabokov. The goal came at 5:17.

The Sharks came right back with Clowe getting his team on the scoreboard. Cory Sarich got tripped up in front of the net and while he was on the ice, Miikka Kiprusoff had slid over to the left side of the net to stop Patrick Marleau from trying a wrap-around. The shot bounced off of Kiprusoff's pads and went to the right, where Clowe was parked. He knocked the puck into the open side of the net and cut the lead to one goal at 6:06.

After getting on the board, the Sharks kept the pressure up. The period ended with San Jose outshooting Calgary 11-9 and the majority of those shots came after their goal.

The second period was a more intense, end-to-end twenty minutes. The Sharks had plenty of chances to tie the game up but Kiprusoff was incredibly sharp, stopping every shot San Jose sent at him. The Flames managed to up their lead to two goals despite being outshot in the period.

Iginla won an epic battle with Brian Campbell that ended in a huge goal for Calgary. Iginla overpowered Campbell and Yelle was following, ready to pick up a rebound. The captain shot the puck and the trailing Yelle was able to bat the puck in the net for his second goal of the game.  Iginla had hit the net and knocked it off but it wasn't clear if the net was off the moorings before the puck crossed the line. The goal was reviewed and it was determined the net was just barely on its moorings when the puck crossed the goal line, giving the Flames a big goal at 16:21.

The third period started out in a shaky fashion for the Flames. Joe Thorton got himself a breakaway chance when Regher and Cory Sarich ran into each other on the Sharks blueline. Thorton got a shot off but Kiprusoff came up large and made the pad save.

Then Jim Vandermeer took the second Flames penalty of the night for holding. San Jose was very aggresive on the power play but again, the Flames goaltender kept the team with a two goal lead by making some spectacular saves.

There was a scary moment for the Flames with less than five minutes to go in the game. Mike Grier sent a shot directly at Kiprusoff and it appeared that he had the puck in his pads but it trickled through his legs before the whistle was blown. Phaneuf had skated in to kick the puck away from the line but Grier was incensed due to the quick whistle. If the whistle hadn't have been blown, San Jose may have had an excellent scoring opportunity.

Nabokov was pulled with just over a minute to go in the game and the move paid off. Clowe was parked in front of the net and when he got the puck, he sent a wrist shot at Kiprusoff, who made the initial save. There was a rebound though and Clowe picked it up and put over Kiprusoff's shoulder. Clowe's second goal of the night came at 19:03.

The Sharks kept pressing for the last 56 seconds but Kiprusoff did his part and preserved the win for the Flames.
 

THE BIG SAVE: Early in the third period, Robyn Regehr and his defensive partner Cory Sarich got mixed up on the Sharks blueline, running into each other when they were going to knock the puck deep. Big Joe Thorton was right there and didn't hesitate to grab the puck and go in on a breakaway. Sarich tried to catch up but Thorton was far enough ahead of him to wire a shot at Miikka Kiprusoff. The Flames netminder was aggresive and came out enough to cut off Thorton's angle and kick the puck to the corner.
THE BIG HIT: Dion Phaneuf leveled Ryan Clowe against the boards and Clowe didn't like it one bit. He got back up and hit Phaneuf twice before knocking the defenseman off his feet. The second hit drew an interference call and when Phaneuf got back up, he shoved Clowe right back down to the ice. The sequence drew a crowd and the pushing and shoving continued until the referee sent Clowe to the box.
THE TURNING POINT: Late in second period, Jarome Iginla overpowered Brian Campbell at the Flames blueline and he made his way all the way to the Sharks net. He shot and the rebound went right to a trailing Stephane Yelle. The forward was able to knock to puck into the back of the net, potting his second goal of the night. It gave the Flames a big two goal lead to go into the third period.

QUOTABLE: "It doesn't feel like stealing one. They put a lot of shots at the net, there's no doubt Kipper played amazing, but I felt we had some real timely plays and obviously some timely goals. We played a great third period and we didn't give them a lot." - Jarome Iginla on the high number of shots that Sharks put on the net

THE ROSTER: The Flames scratches were D Rhett Warrener (ankle), D Anders Eriksson, F Dustin Boyd, F Marcus Nilson and F Mark Smith (head).

WORTH NOTING: Just like in the regular season, the Flames were heavily outshot but managed to get the victory ... Mike Keenan had previously said that the Flames were going to come out and play a highly physical game and they did just that. It was a hard-hitting game with very little penalties for both teams ... Eric Nystrom and David Moss both made it in the lineup after a very strong final game in Vancouver ... in the game winning goal, Jarome Iginla made a crucial play, maybe unintentially,  that ended up winning the game. He held the net on its moorings long enough for the puck to cross the line and make the goal count ... numerous Flames have adopted the "frauxhawk" hairstyle to start the playoffs, including Iginla ...

BY THE NUMBERS: After outshooting the Sharks 7-1 in the first couple of minutes, the Flames didn't register a shot in the last 9:21 of the first period. The Sharks outshot Calgary 11-9 in the first frame ... the Sharks won 75% of the first period faceoffs but the Flames two early goals came from nice, clean Flames faceoff wins ... Jarome Iginla had two assists in the game, bringing his total career playoff points to 38 ... the shots on goal were 39-23 favouring the Sharks.
UP NEXT: The Flames will play in San Jose for the second night in row, playing at 8:00 p.m. MST on CBC on Thursday.