Islanders head coach Scott Gordon will be looking at a few things when he gets back to Long Island from the “Land of Living Skies.” After losing to the Flames 3-2 at the Credit Union Centre in Saskatoon, he’ll be looking at how the younger players produced, how the power play and penalty kills worked well, and how he can turn rust into something a bit shinier.
“There were a lot of positives today,” Gordon said. “We did a great job on the penalty kill. We had good puck movement once we got set up in the zone on the power play and great retrievals on the power play.”
Gordon said he was looking for the newer players on the team to be more physical and for better play on the power play break out.
The Flames (5-0) took a 3-0 lead at 13:14 when a puck which was being cleared bounced off Ales Kotalik who was crashing towards the crease and behind Rick DiPietro
. Calvin de Haan
got the Islanders (0-2) on the board and cut the Flames lead to 3-1 a minute and a half later. On the power play, he backdoored and finished a shot by Rob Schremp. James Wisniewski also got an assist.
de Haan stood out to Gordon.
“I thought Calvin’s offensive game was there,” Gordon said. “He distributed the puck well and his vision was very evident tonight.” Trevor Gillies
scored the second Islanders goal, tipping in a shot by Zenon Konopka at 3:12 in the third.
The Flames came out fast in the second, scoring all three of their goals in the period. At 2:13 Stefan Meyer tipped in Adam Pardy’s shot from the point to get Calgary on the board first. A minute and a half later, Flames left wing Curtis Glencross netted one off assists from Ian White and Mark Giordano making it 2-0 Flames.
In spite of the Flames fast start in the second, Gordon acknowledged strong parts of the game.
“(Five on five) There was execution,” Gordon said. “The faceoffs were good, for the most part our forchecking was good. We have to tighten up defensively.”
As this was the first set of preseason games, there is a learning curve and a need to get back into game situations.
“We had some good chances and we just didn’t get any pucks in the net.
Gordon added: “Overall, first game every body has got a little rust on them.”