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Flames dominate Avs for second straight win

Colorado scored with 1:25 left to ruin Brian Elliott's shutout bid

by Jason Johnson @Jay__Jo /

CALGARY, AB -- Mark Giordano, Alex Chiasson, TJ Brodie and Sean Monahan each posted two points as the Calgary Flames dominated the Colorado Avalanche 4-1 at the Scotiabank Saddledome on Wednesday.

With the win, the Flames moved to within a point of the Edmonton Oilers for third place in the Pacific Division and four points behind first place in the division.

Kris Versteeg, Mikael Backlund, Chiasson and Johnny Gaudreau scored for the Flames while Brian Elliott gave up a goal with 1:25 left in the third period to stop his bid for his first shutout of the season. Elliott made 17 saves for his fifth consecutive win.

Giordano and former Flames captain Jarome Iginla were jostling late in the game and almost came to blows but the officals quickly broke up the tussle.


"There were some emotions," Giordano admitted. "We bumped into each other a few times before that. He's one of the most competitive guys out there. It was just words really.

"We were bumping into each other all night. Sometimes you get into fights with your buddies, too. It was just one of those things ... I bumped him a couple of shifts earlier and he wasn't too happy and let me know. Nothing came of it really."

Patrick Wiercioch netted the lone goal for the Avalanche while Calvin Pickard turned aside 33 shots in goal.

Calgary's power play was deadly on the night, striking three times on seven opportunities.

"We've talked about it all year and I enjoy talking about it now … If you look at our power play, we are very confident moving the puck," Glen Gultzan said in his post-game media address. "I thought we could have even had a couple more on the power play."

The Flames took advantage of a first-period power play to open the scoring. With former Flames forward Rene Bourque serving a holding infraction, Kris Versteeg picked up a loose puck, spun around and deposited his seventh goal of the season to give the Flames a 1-0 lead.

It took Colorado almost 10 minutes to record their first shot of the contest.

Video: COL@CGY: Gaudreau sneaks puck past Pickard for PPG

Backlund followed up with a power play marker at the 17:20 mark of the second period when he slid the puck past a maze of bodies and past Pickard to increase the Flames lead to 2-0.

It was Backlund's sixth goal and ninth point in his last five games and Matthew Tkachuk picked up an assist, extending his point streak to a career-high seven games.

The goal marked Backlund's 200th career NHL point.

"It was a nice milestone to hit. Looking back when I was drafted, you never knew if you were going to get to play 400 games and get 200 points," Backlund said. "It's a step out of the way and I want to try to keep getting better and try to keep doing that."

Chiasson gave Calgary a 3-0 lead 6:35 into the third period when Brodie was tripped up but still managed to chip the puck to Chiasson, who blasted home his sixth of the season.

"Brods has some of the best perception in the game," Giordano said of his former blueline partner. "He got tripped up and still got it to the front of the net.

"It was nice to see Chiasser get rewarded because he has been working really hard for us and doing a lot of things for us that go unnoticed."

Gaudreau completed the scoring for the Flames while on a five-on-three advantage. The slick forward picked up the puck and skated around the back of the net but made a sharp hairpin turn to open up some net and slide the puck past Pickard.

"Our team game was really good tonight but our special teams ... our power play really pushed us over the top tonight," Giordano said. "We generated a lot of chances, we had a lot of looks and put three goals in the net.

"Any time you put three in on eht power play you're not going to lose many of those games, unless it's a high-scoring game."

Wiercoich ruined Elliott's shutout bid in the final two minutes when he flipped a weak backhand towards the goal that Elliott misplayed and gave Colorado their only marker of the contest.

NOTES: Scratched for the Flames was defenceman Jyrki Jokipakka (healthy) and forwards Troy Brouwer (broken finger) and Garnet Hathaway (healthy).

UP NEXT: The Flames travel to Vancouver for the front end of a home-and-home set against the Canucks on Friday (8:00 PM; SNW, SN960).

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