The Flames were again outworked and outplayed in Game 2 against the Wings Sunday at Joe Louis Arena. The series now shifts to Calgary, where the Flames have been dynamite this season, winning a league leading 30 games on home ice.
If the Flames have any chance of tying the series at two, they need to get focused and play a disciplined 60 minutes at the Pengrowth Saddledome starting Tuesday.
Calgary got into penalty trouble early in Game 2 and they need to watch their play and stay out of the box if they want to beat Detroit at their own game.
"We want to keep it five-on-five as much as possible and make it tough for both teams," said Craig Conroy. "They're probably going to come with grit and we feel like we have a lot of grit too."
Defenceman Robyn Regehr agrees.
"Discipline is huge, not just staying out of the box, but discipline in sticking to our game plan," added Regehr. "And I think the team that does that best will win the game."
Wearing Kipper Down
If one person is giving his all in the series, it would have to be netminder Miikka Kiprusoff, who has had to stand on his head time and time again for the Flames.
The Finnish netminder has not only faced 97 shots in the opening two games, but has stopped 90 of them and even taken one off the head and still managed to be stellar between the posts.
The Flames may have stepped up their game and were stronger in the second, but Detroit still managed to outshoot them 12-3. In Sunday's match up they were outshoot 51-15.
“We knew we didn’t play well enough and knew we had to come out with a much better effort and have a better second period," commented Dion Phaneuf.
"We want to get on a roll, we talked about it. It wasn’t acceptable how we played in Period 1 and we had to go out and have a better second, and we did that."
Regehr Re-injures Leg
The rugged defenceman felt ready to go after sitting Game 1 with a leg injury Thursday. He was welcomed back with open arms and was effective on the blue line until he took a crunch from Kris Draper to his left knee, sending the d-man to the bench.
The Flames were forced to use five defenceman for the remainder of the game and fans did not see Regehr return in the third.
"Jimmy (Playfair) felt comfortable with putting me in the lineup and the doctors were happy with how I’d progressed," said Regehr prior to taking the hit from Draper.
"Our guys were a little bit lacking in the physical department and also emotionally in Game 1, so that’s an area where I really would have liked to help out and I think everyone has to be better."
Boys Are Back In Town
The Flames return home Tuesday for Game 3, to an arena where they have dominated all season. The Flames will need to come with a lot of grit and stay out of the box.
"It wasn’t good enough, that’s the bottom line, and we have to play a lot better against a very good team," said Phaneuf.