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The Game Rush: Flames vs. Wild

by Kristi Hennessy / Calgary Flames

CALGARY, AB -- In a game that started off very slow, seeing only 15 total shots in the opening frame and 11 in the 2nd, the Wild managed to come out on top to beat the Flames 3-1.

The Wild opened the scoring at 15:25 of the 2nd period on the power play. Miiko Koivu fed an open Antti Miettinen who fired one past a stunned Miikka Kiprusoff to make it 1-0.

Just a few minutes later with 53 seconds to play in the period, Mikko Koivu stunned the Flames again. Brent Burns wired a hard slap shot from the top of the right circle and Koivu was in front of the net to redirect the puck in. The Wild went to the intermission with a 2-0 lead.

The Flames came out with fire power in the 3rd period however the bounces just didn't go their way as Tom Kostopoulos was sent to the box for tripping at 2:03.

Chuck Kobasew picked up the 3rd goal for the Wild at 7:41 of the final period and the Flames looked like they had given up hope. It was Matt Stajan who gave the Flames a little spark scoring with just over five minutes to play in regulation.

Cory Sarich passed the puck over to Stajan who was waiting at the post where he seems to have had success. As he was falling down, at the very last second, he was able to lift the puck past Niklas Backstrom. The lone goal gave the crowd something to cheer about as the Wild  would not shut out the Flames.

Calgary kept the pressure up trying everything they could to get the puck in the net but again, the bounces just weren't going their way.

The Flames had 15 shots on net in the 3rd to the Wild's four but 3-1 remained the final on Saturday night.

After a slow start to the game, the Wild finally opened the scoring at 15:25 of the 2nd period on the power play. The Wild held the buzz for a few more minutes and scored again in the final minute to head into the intermission with a 2-0 lead.

The Flames did manage to get a goal but it was a little too late as the two quick ones came back to haunt them.

After a solid performance by Matt Stajan on Thursday night against the Maple Leafs, after sitting as a healthy scratch for two straight games, Stajan showed another solid effort again.

Stajan picked up the Flames lone goal tonight at 14:43 of the 3rd period. Cory Sarich fed a falling down Stajan at the left goal post. Stajan lifted the puck at the last second past Niklas Backstrom to eliminate the shutout.

Jarome Iginla was by far the hardest working Flame on the ice tonight. He played a solid 22:03 minutes of ice-time tonight in 22 shifts.

He recorded just two shots, however, he had several scoring chances and a fair number of his shots were blocked. He went 67% in the face-off circle and did everything he could to help his team win tonight. Unfortunately for the captain, the bounces just didn't go his way. He did manage to pick up the 1st star of the night.

RW Jarome Iginla has 13 more goals (31) than any other player vs. the Wild (Hejduk, Langkow).

Jarome Iginla:
"I thought they were opportunistic tonight. We didn't generate enough. It was tight all around."

Mark Giordano:
"It is our rink. We have to find a way to be the better team. We have to find a way to win. That's a road game for them. They came in and buried their chances. Yeah, we were in their zone but we didn't score."

Monday, Dec. 20 @ Minnesota
  6:00 PM MT (SNET-W, FAN 960)

The Flames hit the road for part two of the home and home series against the Minnesota Wild this time it's in their barn.

Monday's game will be the fifth of six times that these two division rivals have met this season. Calgary leads the season series 3-1.

Game time is  6:00 PM MT on SNET-West & The FAN 960.
17 Mark Giordano is currently 17th amongst defensemen scoring leaders with three goals and 15 assists for 18 points.
28 December 28th is both David Moss and Curtis Glencross' birthdays.
71 Brendan Morrison went 71% in the face-off circle.
144 RW Cal Clutterbuck ranks 1st in the NHL with 144 hits. The forward has led the league in hits each of the past two seasons.
26:09 Jay Bouwmeester is 4th in the NHL in average minutes played per game.

1st Star
Jarome Iginla
G A P +/- Shots
0 0 0 -1 2
2nd Star
Matt Stajan
G A P +/- Shots
1 0 1 +1 1
3rd Star
Alex Tanguay
G A P +/- Shots
0 0 0 -1 2

Niklas Backstrom
29 28 1 60:00 .966

Miikka Kiprusoff
16 13 3 58:27 .813

Author: Kristi Hennessy

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