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Flames drop final pre-season game in Vancouver

Calgary wraps up pre-season with 3-4-0 record

by Aaron Vickers @AAVickers /

VANCOUVER, BC -- Loui Eriksson scored his first two goals, and Ryan Miller made 35 saves to help the Vancouver Canucks shut out the Calgary Flames 4-0 at Rogers Arena on Thursday.
Brandon Sutter and Jake Virtanen also scored for the Canucks (2-2-2).
Chad Johnson made 22 saves for the Flames (3-4-0), who have been shut out in twice in the past three games.

"Obviously when you see the goals that we've scored and the amount we scored tonight, and in the last few games it is a concern," Gulutzan said. "To build confidence in that is just to stay to the process. What I didn't like was the four up there. 
"We'd like to get one or two, but we want to make sure that our goals against are down. We've done a good job of that through the preseason. If we keep doing the right things goal scoring will come."
Eriksson scored his first with Vancouver up 2-0. Parked in front of the net, Eriksson deflected Daniel Sedin's shot by Johnson at 11:43 of the second period.
He added his second of the game at 13:28 of the third. Eriksson corralled a deflection off a high stick from Flames defenceman Dennis Wideman behind the net and chipped it by Johnson to put the Canucks up 4-0. 
"Pre-season has been weird," Johnson said. "That first game was good. I felt good tonight. They came pretty hard at us right from the start there. You take what you can from it, clean things up, and move on. It was a pretty crazy game. Pretty wide open there for the whole game."
Sutter opened the scoring with a shorthanded goal 12:50 into the first period to put Vancouver up 1-0, and Virtanen doubled the lead with 2:20 remaining in the first with the help of a pair of former Flames.
Sven Baertschi carried the puck into Calgary's end before passing off to Markus Granlund, who fed Virtanen in the slot for a one-timer. 

Video: Flames drop final pre-season game in Vancouver
Goal of the Game: Skating down his off wing on a 2-on-1, Sutter elected to keep and shot over Johnson's shoulder for the eventual game-winner midway through the first.
Save of the Game: Granlund fed Baertschi with a pass from the corner through the slot with Vancouver on the power play midway through the second, but Johnson slid to his right to go post-to-post to temporarily keep Calgary within two.
Unsung Moment of the Game: Lauri Korpiskoski blocked a shot off the stick of Philip Larsen at 8:34 of the first period, one of three blocked shots for the Flames forward. Korpikoski finished with three blocked shots; the Flames had six total.
Highlight of the Game: After being sprung on a partial breakaway by Alexandre Burrows, Jack Skille had his deke stopped by Johnson 28 seconds after Eriksson's goal to put Vancouver up 3-0.
They said it: "Tonight I thought Vancouver had a pretty close rendition of their group for the year. We had some young guys we took a look at. This back-to-back didn't set up great as far as our scheduling. Our compete level was high. We managed 35 shots, but we couldn't get it in. The positive side of that is we have to know that there are little things that have to be done and we're teaching on that to score goals in the National Hockey League, especially with our young players." - Gulutzan on offensive struggles in the pre-season.
"Some of the situations, and maybe some scoring chances, are hopefully not going to happen as often as they do. There's us working together and trying to communicate and hammer things out. You just move past it. You try to take as much as you can. That's all you can really do. You compete and move on." -Johnson on moving on from his second loss of the preseason.
"I felt good. I was looking forward to this…getting into a game. It wasn't my best game. It's stuff you can learn from. I have a lot to improve on, and I know that." -Sean Monahan, on playing his first game of the pre-season. 
Need to Know: Monahan made his preseason debut after missing training camp because of a back strain. Defencemen TJ Brodie and Mark Giordano, and forwards Michael Frolik, Troy Brouwer, Sam Bennett and Matthew Tkachuk did not dress for the game. The Flames finished 0-for-3 on the power play and killed off both penalties.  
What's Next: The Flames will open the regular season against the Edmonton Oilers at Rogers Place on Wednesday (8 p.m. MT; SN, SN960).

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