Inside The Game: Flames vs. Rangers

Sunday, 15.12.2013 / 8:51 PM / News
By Aaron Vickers  - CalgaryFlames.com (@aavickers)
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Inside The Game: Flames vs. Rangers
Go inside Calgary\'s 4-3 shootout loss to the New York Rangers

GAME IN A MINUTE

CALGARY, AB -- For the third straight game, the Calgary Flames took their opponent to extra time.

And for the first time in three, Calgary didn’t leave with the full two points.

Benoit Pouliot’s one-handed deke escaped Karri Ramo while Henrik Lundqvist slammed the door on Mikael Backlund in the seventh round of the shootout to lift the New York Rangers over the Flames 4-3 at Madison Square Garden on Sunday.

Pouliot, one of four shooters to beat Ramo in the shootout, pulled to his left before dropping one hand from his stick and tucking the puck in with the other to put the Flames on the brink. Needing a goal to continue, Backlund’s deke was stopped by Lundqvist.

The win is New York’s first in five tries on a nine-game home stand and is just the second time in 17 games the Rangers have been victorious after giving up the first goal of the game.

Mikael Backlund opened the scoring for the Flames. With the man advantage just 7:28 into the game, Backlund redirected Kris Russell’s point shot by Lundqvist to stake the Flames to a 1-0 lead.

Lance Bouma failed to convert on a breakaway after being sprung by Shane O’Brien, but Curtis Glencross put Calgary up by two at the 15-minute mark of the first.

Trying to clear the puck out of the zone, Lundqvist couldn’t get the puck beyond the hash marks, where Jiri Hudler walked off the wall and fed a cross-crease pass to Glencross for his sixth of the season and first since Nov. 3rd.

Calgary couldn’t hold the lead, though.

Derek Stepan replied before the period was out with his sixth of the season, skipping a shot off a Flames defenceman and behind Ramo just 25 seconds after Glencross’ tally.

Carl Hagelin, also with his sixth, tied the game with his wrap-around at 7:29 of the second, the only goal of the middle frame to tie the game 2-2.

The teams traded goals in the third period, too.

Sean Monahan put the Flames up 3-2 at 4:44 in his second game back since suffering a hairline fracture in his foot, converting Glencross’ pass from below the goal line by chipping the puck over Lundqvist for his 10th of the season.

Chris Kreider answered with his eighth, backhanding Stepan’s rebound by Ramo at 12:07 to force overtime and the eventual shootout.

GOAL OF THE GAME

After Lundqvist’s failed clear, Hudler picked the puck off the wall and fed a cross-crease pass to Glencross, who made no mistake in finding the back of the net for the first time since returning from a knee injury on Dec. 12th.

SAVE OF THE GAME

With 2:37 remaining in the third and the Rangers with a 5-on-3 man advantage, Ramo slammed the pads shut to deny Brad Richards’ one-timer and ensured the Flames earned a point.

TURNING POINT

Pouliot’s winner in the seventh round of the shootout gave New York the victory on Sunday.

STAT OF THE GAME

With a game-high five blocked shots, Russell has upped his total on the season to 100 -- second in the league only to Andrew MacDonald’s 113 for the New York Islanders.

LINEUP NOTES

David Jones, TJ Galiardi and Christopher Breen were scratched against the Rangers. Dennis Wideman (hand) missed the game due to injury.

COMING UP

The Flames will take Monday off before returning to the ice in Boston to tackle the Bruins on Tuesday (5 p.m. MT, SNET-W) in the third of five away from Scotiabank Saddledome.