Skip to main content

Flames scorch Luongo and Canucks, 5-3 @NHLdotcom

Calgary made it 2-for-2 against the Canucks this season by routing Roberto Luongo at the Pengrowth Saddledome behind a "Gordie Howe hat trick" by Brian McGrattan.

McGrattan was among five Flames who scored as Calgary coasted to victory after beating Luongo five times in the first 31:33. The All-Star goaltender stopped just 14 of 19 shots before being lifted after the second period.

With the victory, Calgary (5-2-1) ended a three-game winless streak and moved into a tie with the Colorado Avalanche for the top spot in the Northwest Division. Miikka Kiprusoff improved his record to 5-1-1 by making 26 saves.

"I thought we played a pretty good game here tonight," Calgary coach Brent Sutter said. "The emotion level was there, the intensity level was there."

It's the second time in four games that Luongo has been lifted -- and the second time he's lost to the Flames, who also beat the Canucks 5-3 on opening night.

"I think right now we have to play our system and we're not doing that," Luongo said. "We're turning pucks over, we're just not playing the way we should be playing as a team and we have to take some responsibility on ourselves and make sure we all know what we have to do on the ice and play as a five-man unit when we're out there."

Curtis Glencross put the Flames up 1-0 at 7:18 of the first period when he beat Luongo on a shorthanded breakaway. Nigel Dawes' midair tip-in of Mark Giordano's power-play shot at 10:50 made it 2-0.

Dion Phaneuf and Dustin Boyd scored 2:48 apart in the second period to make it 4-0 before McGrattan, who set up Boyd's goal, roofed his linemate's pass at 11:33. It was McGrattan's first goal since April 3, 2006, during his rookie season with the Ottawa Senators -- a span of 91 NHL games without scoring. He's missed a lot of time with shoulder problems.

"Any way that you can contribute offensively is a boost for our team. We know our job. We have to play tough and physical in their end," said McGrattan, who also had a first-period scrap with Darcy Hordichuk. "If you can get a goal or two that really helps the team and helps the guys get going."

Sutter was delighted for the 28-year-old forward.

"He worked really hard to get to this point," Sutter said. "He was rewarded tonight in different ways."

The Canucks got an early third-period goal by Rick Rypien and two late power-play goals by Mikael Samuelsson and Christian Ehrhoff to make the final score look closer.

"They had one of the stronger starts that I have seen so far this year, they were physical, strong on the puck and they generated a lot of scoring chances for the first 15 minutes of the first period and we had a tough time handling it," coach Alain Vigneault said.

"Obviously, I think this group can play better than it did tonight. I think you have to give credit to the opposition. They played a real strong, physical game, and at the end of the day they were the better team today."

--John Kreiser,

Material from wire services and team media was used in this report

View More

The NHL uses cookies, web beacons, and other similar technologies. By using NHL websites or other online services, you consent to the practices described in our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service, including our Cookie Policy.