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Moss strikes twice as Flames bounce back

by Todd Kimberley

Todd Kimberley | Correspondent

— The Calgary Flames got a lot of mileage out of Monday night's win. After all, they finally kept their foot on the gas.

Heading into Game 3 of their Western Conference Quarterfinal series against the Chicago Blackhawks, the Flames had been bemoaning the fact that they couldn’t seal the deal in either of the first two games at Chicago’s United Center.

Back home at the Pengrowth Saddledome, the Flames got an ugly goal by Rene Bourque near the end of the second period, then two quick ones by David Moss early in the third, to skate away with a 4-2 victory in front of 19,289 noisy patrons.

"We battled back, settled our nerves, and from there we played a pretty solid game," said Flames forward Eric Nystrom, who erased an early 1-0 Chicago lead with the first playoff goal of his NHL career.

"We weren’t going to back down. We were going to play our hearts out until the end of the game."

Monday’s result vaults the Flames back into this series, with Chicago still leading the best-of-7 two games to one. Game 4 will be Wednesday night (10 p.m. ET, VERSUS, TSN) in Calgary.

Monday’s events were, in many ways, a mirror image of the way things played out during the first two games of the series.

While the Flames had enjoyed early leads at the United Center, the ’Hawks went for the jugular to begin play, opening the scoring with a Patrick Sharp power-play goal, and missed a few glorious chances to go up by two.

With 2:53 left in the second period, Bourque broke open a tense game as Calgary established a 2-1 lead after 40 minutes and never looked back.

"We had a chance to go up two-zip, there . . . a couple of good solid opportunities," Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said.

"We had a lot of hockey left (entering the third). Obviously them getting that goal early in the third really hurt, and when they scored another one quickly after that, it’s an uphill battle at that point."

Added Chicago forward Adam Burish: "They kept pressing. The last two games, they had the lead and didn’t come at us like they did tonight.

"They had the lead tonight, and they played good with it. Give them a lot of credit for how they finished the game."

The Flames are still waiting for their star players, such as Jarome Iginla and Olli Jokinen, to put their stamp on this series. Moss now leads Calgary in playoff goals with three.

"We got the result we wanted. We got the win," Jokinen said. "We all played better, I think."

Star Chicago forward Patrick Kane missed the game with the flu, and was replaced in the lineup by rookie forward Colin Fraser.

Things got ugly in the final minute, as Burish and Bourque were involved in an altercation that left Flames coach Mike Keenan seeing red.

"Burish broke his stick over (Bourque’s) face," said Keenan. "I have no idea how the referees could miss it. It was blatant, and it was a cross-check to the face to the point where the man broke his stick over (Bourque’s) face.

"I’m disappointed that they weren’t given a match penalty for deliberate attempt to injure … we had a meeting, the managers and coaches, about those types of tactics late in games."

Burish and Bourque were each given roughing minors and 10-minute misconducts.

Burish said he is not concerned about a possible suspension.

"I don’t think so," he said. "A scrum happens at the end of the game … it’s just two tough teams finishing a game."

The ’Hawks finished the game 1-for-7 on the power play, while the Flames were 0-for-3.

Calgary’s Warren Peters, fresh from the sin bin after serving a too-many-men call, charges up ice with Curtis Glencross and Eric Nystrom. Peters, making his NHL playoff debut, makes a beeline for the net and screens Nikolai Khabibulin as Nystrom rifles a wrister, glove side, to tie the score 1-1 at 6:40 of the first.

Chicago defenseman Brent Seabrook logs 28:06 in ice time to lead all skaters. Seabrook doles out four hits and blocks two shots.

Flames break a six-game losing streak against the ’Hawks this season, and also halt a run of six straight playoff losses against them dating back to the 1996 playoffs.

David Moss, after potting a pair of goals in the third period, now leads the Flames with three in these playoffs. His shooting percentage is a nifty 33 per cent.

Flames finally win a second period in this series, with Rene Bourque’s late tiebreaker the only goal of the frame. Chicago had outscored Calgary, 4-0 combined, in the middle frames of Games 1 and 2 at the United Center.


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