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Flames finish out four-game roadie in style with a 6-0 drubbing of Anaheim

by TY PILSON @typilson /

ANAHEIM - They were frustrated.

And angry with themselves.

The Flames were eager to atone for a 5-3 loss to the Kings Wednesday night at the Staples Center, a game in which they felt they didn't play very well, made too many mistakes, and didn't capitilize on powerplay chances to get back into the game.

Thankfully for them, they said, the schedule allowed for that just 24 hours later in their eighth back-to-back of the season when they faced the Ducks down the freeway in Anaheim. 

And boy, did they ever redeem themselves.


Video: Brendan Parker recaps the win over the Ducks



Video: Brendan Parker recaps the win over the Ducks


In front of a sizeable contigent of Flames fans, they exploded for four first-period goals en route to a 6-0 victory at the Honda Center.

It was their third win to close out this four-game road swing, another offensive outburst to go with a pair of earlier 6-2 wins over the Canucks and the Sharks.

All told, they come home with six of eight points as they continue to battle for a playoff spot in the ultra-tight Pacific Division.

Cam Talbot - starting his first game of the trip and making 44 saves in the outing - was called on early to make a big stop, getting his blocker on a shot by Jakob Silfverberg who was all alone streaking in through the slot.

With Wednesday's powerplay woes fresh in their minds, they got a PP opportunity just over six minutes into the first, when Max Jones was sent off for a hook on TJ Brodie.

They made good two seconds after the man-up expired, Elias Lindholm smacking the puck into the blue paint behind Ducks goalie John Gibson. Before he could get a second whack at it to knock it over the line, Silfverberg pushed it home while trying to clear it out of harm's way at 8:15.

Michael Stone and Brodie got the assists.


Video: CGY@ANA: Lindholm scores in 1st period


Lindholm scored twice in the loss to the Kings and his goal Thursday, as the last Flame to touch the puck, extended his current point-streak to eight games (four goals and five helpers in that span).

The Ducks got their first powerplay not long after, Sam Steel getting a great chance but his shot went off the leg of teammate Derek Grant who set a screen and careened into the corner.

On the same advantage, Ryan Getzlaf wired a shot with Nick Ritchie parked in front of Talbot, but the netminder was able to peak around and flashed the leather to make the stop.

Mikael Backlund scored his third goal in as many games at 12:10, converting a pass from Andrew Mangiapane off a rush. Matthew Tkachuk also picked up his 28th helper on the play. 


Video: CGY@ANA: Backlund scores in 1st period


Just 1:29 later, Oliver Kylington made it 3-0 when he skated into the Ducks zone with a man on him and hit the binders, spinning around and after realizing he'd been left all alone, walked in a few steps and snapped a beautiful wrister high far-side just under the bar for his second of the season.


Video: CGY@ANA: Kylington scores in 1st period


Off the ensuing faceoff, Zac Rinaldo dropped the gloves with Nicolas Deslauriers, falling at one point but getting back up as the officials backed off and they kept swinging.

The Ducks got a 3-on-1 with time winding down in the period and Rickard Rakell stepped into a shot but broke his stick, the puck firing off wide. 

The Flames gathered the puck and Mark Jankowski skated it straight up the ice and put another shot high-side over Gibson's left shoulder from some distance with 55 seconds left in the first.

It was Jankowski's second goal in three games, and fourth of the year, with Brodie getting another assist.


Video: CGY@ANA: Jankowski scores in 1st period


Gibson didn't come out for the second, replaced by veteran Ryan Miller.

He was tested when Gaudreau got sprung on a breakaway, trying to go five-hole but Miller slammed the pads shut and corralled the loose puck as Gaudreau took a second poke at it.

Not long after, he got another partial breakaway but lost his handle on the puck as he tried to shoot.

The Flames kept coming, Dillon Dube driving wide on a rush and getting around Ducks defenceman Josh Manson but Miller was able to make the stop. 

Anaheim created plenty of their own chances but Talbot stood tall time-and-time again.

After making a stop on a Ducks point shot amid traffic, he then denied Adam Henrique - the Ducks leading goal-scorer this season - from his backside, ending up laid out with the puck under his arm.

Backlund then scored an absolute beauty while short-handed, driving towards the net with Rakell draped on him - the ref's arm up for a delayed penalty - and placing a backhander up and under the bar.


Video: CGY@ANA: Backlund flips home backhander for SHG


There was no letting up in the final frame, Jankowski scoring his second of the night before the midway point of the frame.


Video: CGY@ANA: Jankowski cleans up in front for second goal



Talbot on the bounce-back win:

"We came out flying tonight. We wanted to end off this road trip on a good note. We had a great start to the road trip and then had a little bit of a dip last night but came out here and finished off strong, that was the main focus for us."


Video: "I felt like I controlled the game as best I could"


Talbot on the team's offence, that scored 21 goals in three games:

"Ya, we got a lot of depth scoring on this trip. Everybody contributed throughout the lineup, our D chipped in with some goals. Our fourth line got a bunch in San Jose the other night. So, I mean whenever you're getting contributions up and down the lineup, you're going to win more often than not."


On his first shutout as a Flame:

"I felt like I controlled the game the best I could. I didn't leave too much laying around for them to bang in but a lot of their shots came from the outside and that makes it easy for me to control it. Our penalty-kill was grea tonight and, like I said, getting contributions up and down the lineup again."


Backlund on his pair of tallies:

"It felt good obviously, first time this year so that was nice."


Backlund on strong finish to trip:

"Ya, for sure, that was a great period by us. Like you say, we talked about it on the bus last night that we had one more big game on this trip that can make it a really good road trip. We wished we would have won yesterday but still, to get six points out of eight on this trip is big for this group. The situation we're in, a lot of teams are fighting for spots."


Video: "I've been feeling better and better"


Jankowski on victory:

"I think we had a good bounce back. Obviously we knew we needed to have a big game after last night and I think we started right off the start. We had a good start and we played a good 60 minutes so we knew wehad to play a little harder and we did that tonight."


Janko on his confidence right now:

"I think ever since I got that first one in Ottawa the weight was lifted off my shoulders a little bit and was able to play a little more freely and it definitely feels good. I think our whole team, it's a team effort right now ... we can roll four lines and everyone is buying in. So it's been a good team effort the last few games."


Ward on coming out strong after loss:

"Ya, well we got some timely scoring early, but I liked the response of our guys. We talked about how important it was to come out and play a solid first period, get into the game early and I thought the guys did a good job of that. So, ya, we talked about the importance of the response. The response is always the important thing as this time of year. You have to park things quickly and move on to the next task and I thought our guys were full marks for doing that and as a result we get a good win here."



"I liked his game. He was excellent in here last time and I really felt like he was comfortable tracking the puck and everything was off him and he was following it and I thought it was an easy game for him positionally. I thought he anticipated plays well and I just thought he had himself in positions where he didn't have to react pucks, pucks were just hitting him and that's usually a good sign. So we're really pleased with the game he played for us today."


Video: "I liked the response of our guys"



The Ducks last game - against the St. Louis Blues on Tuesday night at the Honda Center - was postponed after former Flame and current Blues defenceman Jay Bouwmeester suffered a cardiac event on the bench, where - according to - medical personnel used a defibrilator to revive him. He was transported to a nearby hospital. GM Doug Armstrong updated media Wednesday, saying: "Jay Bouwmeester is doing very well at the UC Irvine Medical Center in Anaheim and is undergoing a battery of tests to determine the how and why of what happened last night. Things are looking very positive." Both teams stood on the blueline before and during the anthems to wish him well ... As mentioned above, this was the eighth back-to-back of the season for the Flames. They are now 4-4-0 in the second game of back-to-backs. Their next two-in-two comes Feb. 29 and March 1 against the Tampa Bay Lightning and Florida Panthers ... The Flames have a record of 18-16-4 against Western Conference opponents, and are 11-9-1 against the Pacific Division ... These two teams will meet twice more this season, both times at the Scotiabank Saddledome, on Feb. 17 and March 25 ... Talbot is now five starts away from 300.


Tweet from @NHLFlames: Both teams on ice to say ���Get Well Soon Jay���




Tweet from @NHLFlames: Here are your starters, presented by @Schneiders!


The trio and D-pairings to start last night's tilt:


Johnny Gaudreau - Sean Monahan - Elias Lindholm

Andrew Mangiapane - Mikael Backlund - Matthew Tkachuk

Milan Lucic - Derek Ryan - Dillon Dube

Zac Rinaldo - Mark Jankowski - Sam Bennett


Noah Hanifin - Rasmus Andersson

TJ Brodie - Michael Stone

Oliver Kylington - Brandon Davidson


Cam Talbot



After a week away on the road, the Flames return home to the Scotiabank Saddledome to take on the Blackhawks Saturday in a Hockey Night In Canada tilt. Click for tickets, before hosting the Ducks on Feb. 17 in a Family Day matinee affair at 2 p.m. Click for tickets.

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