When Calgary Head Coach Darryl Sutter sent out a rugged foursome to take the final face-off of the game after the Predators had iced the game with an empty netter with just 2.9 seconds remaining, Preds coach Barry Trotz knew exactly what was about to ensue.
"They had four guys out there to do something," Trotz said. "Obviously, that's premeditated. You look over and Darryl's talking to Oliwa, and he's got Regehr taking the draw. I just told our guys to back off.”
Mayhem erupted soon thereafter, and when it was all said and done, referees Bill McCreary and Kelly Sutherland had handed out 25 penalties totaling 138 penalty minutes – 101 of which went to Flames skaters.
Several skirmishes took place simultaneously in the final three seconds, including one between the goalies, Tomas Vokoun and Miikka Kiprusoff. Greg Johnson and Scott Hartnell also dropped the gloves for the Predators, while Flames assistant coach Rich Preston and Trotz could be seen angrily yelling at each other from their respective benches.
“Those were incidents in the past that stirred some anger,” Trotz said recently. “We have had some memorable games with them – there have been some scrapes and incidents that have made both teams very competitive.”
Hartnell provided a goal with just one second remaining in the first period to tie the game at 1-1, and Martin Erat
provided the game winner at the 17:45 mark of the second. Those goals, paired with Sergei Zholtok’s empty netter, gave the Preds a 3-1 victory, starting a streak of eight straight wins against the Flames.