The Five Takeaways: Flames-Blues

Five key elements from the Flames-Blues tilt

Monday, 10.10.2011 / 2:11 PM / News
By Torie Peterson  - CalgaryFlames.com (@toriepeterson)
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The Five Takeaways: Flames-Blues



THE CALGARY TOWER RISES IN ST. LOUIS

Henrik Karlsson was handed the goaltending reigns on Monday afternoon, getting his first start of the 2011-12 season. The Flames want to have the 27 year-old play in more games this season to help reduce workhorse Miikka Kiprusoff's load this year.

His first outing of the season didn't go over as well as he would have liked as he allowed five goals on 35 shots. His teammates came to his defence after the game but Karlsson placed the blame for the loss on his shoulders.

In his first season with the Flames, Karlsson played in 17 games, going 4-5-6. He recorded a .908 save percentage and a 2.58 GAA.

IGGY OWNS THE BLUES

Jarome Iginla's second period tally not only got his team back within a single goal but also pushed him past Lanny McDonald on the NHL's all-time points leaders list with 1,007 to his name.

Iginla has dominated the Blues throughout his career, scoring 27 goals and 68 points through 58 games. He potted his 365th goal against them, setting a new Flames record, and earned his 1000th point against them as well.

GLENCROSS KEEPS IT COMING

For all of the eternal optimists out there, Curtis Glencross is currently on pace for an 82-goal campaign. For all of the tempered realists, while it may still be very early in the year, the Kindersley, Saskatchewan native looks like he'll be blowing past his career-high 24 goals he tallied last season.

He opened the scoring on Saturday night when his one-timer flew past Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury and he added his second goal of the season on Monday when his wrist shot in the slot slipped through Jaroslav Halak's pads.

Glencross put in 15:16 of ice time in St. Louis, playing on a line with Olli Jokinen and Lee Stempniak.

NEW FACE ON THE BLUELINE

The Flames coaching staff opted to insert defenceman Derek Smith into the lineup, replacing Anton Babchuk in the lineup. Smith won a roster spot thanks to his solid performance in the preseason and training camp but many assumed he would sit out as veterans Babchuk and Cory Sarich had appeared to have sealed up the third pairing on the blueline.

The 26 year-old played 15:16, had 21 shifts and was a -1 in his first outing in a Flames jersey.

STRUGGLING IN THE THIRD

The Flames came out flat in the third period despite only being down by a goal and it cost them two points. They allowed two goals, with beating Karlsson, and they mustered just two shots on net.

The period was eerily similar to the effort put forth in their game against Pittsburgh on Saturday when the Penguins scored four goals through the middle frame.

"We need to find our game," Jarome Iginla said afterwards. "Find our work ethic and our compete level in our second and thirds. Just a lot more relentlessness. We haven't had that in our first two games.

"We've come out in the first ten (minutes) and we've played up-tempo and we've done that. Then we faded off."

Follow Torie Peterson on Twitter | @ToriePeterson