Inside The Game: Flames vs. Canadiens
GAME IN A MINUTE
CALGARY, AB -- The Calgary Flames couldn’t take their winning ways on the road.
Former Flames forward Rene Bourque’s goal late in the second period help up as the winner after goaltender Carey Price stopped all 27 shots faced to lift the Montreal Canadiens to a 2-0 victory against Calgary at Bell Centre on Tuesday.
The loss snaps the Flames’ five-game winning streak, with all five victories coming in Calgary at Scotiabank Saddledome.
The Flames will close out the pre-Olympic portion of their schedule with road games against the New York Islanders on Thursday and Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday.
After combining for just nine shots in the opening 20 minutes, both teams wasted little time getting going in the second period.
But it wasn’t until 16:15 that Bourque broke a scoreless tie with his eighth goal of the season when Brandon Prust’s centering pass hits Reto Berra, then off the shin of Bourque and into the Flames net.
The goal came in a period that saw the two teams combine for 29 shots and featured some goaltending heroics at both ends.
Just 51 seconds into the frame, Berra robbed Brian Gionta along in the slot, trapping the wrist shot of the Canadiens forward to keep the game scoreless.
A two-man advantage four minutes later yielded plenty of opportunity for the Flames, but Price was equal, too. First, he denied Mark Giordano’s one-timer before smothering Mike Cammalleri’s sharp-angled opportunity. He was equally sharp on Kris Russell’s wrister, too.
The Flames pressed for the equalizer in the third, firing another eight shots that Price turned aside.
Calgary’s best opportunity came off the stick of Lee Stempniak who, alone in the slot, rifled a shot off the arm of Price 3:18 into the final frame.
Another late charge that featured a Dennis Wideman blast from the point and a redirected bounce pass off the end boards by Joe Colborne proved fruitless as well, eventually paving the way for David Desharnais empty net goal with 11 seconds remaining to lift the Canadiens to victory.
SAVE OF THE GAME
Just 51 seconds into the second period, Daniel Briere spotted Gionta along in the slot, who one-times a pass that Berra smothers to preserve the scoreless game.
Though not immediately impacting the score, Calgary’s failed opportunity with the two-man advantage in the second period swung momentum in Montreal’s favour with Bourque’s goal proving to be the difference.
STAT OF THE GAME
Despite four shots on goal, Flames captain Mark Giordano saw his point-scoring streak -- the longest from a defenceman in the NHL this season -- snapped at nine games in Montreal.
The Flames will play their second of three on the road to wrap up their pre-Olympic schedule on Thursday when they visit the New York Islanders (5 p.m. MST, SNET-Calgary, Sportsnet 960 The Fan).