Nights like these make it really difficult to sit down and write about hockey. It's not the losing; I mean, we're pretty used to that. It's that it's hard to explain how and why the result occurred. Exactly how do you discern specific incidents of suck from a sea of overwhelming suck? You don't -- you just try to swim ashore and stay dry.
Over the course of an 82-game season, games like tonight are going to happen. Teams are going to lack in effort, employ the wrong strategy, make poor decisions, and have every bounce go the way of their opponent. The Avs have played bad games this season, but this was the first game (from the 2nd Period on) that really felt helpless. A trio of terrible penalties -- two by John Mitchell -- set the tone in the 1st Period. Dougie Hamilton would score on the Flames' second opportunity after a poor Gabriel Landeskog clearing attempt. But Colorado would get a couple of power plays of their own; and despite not finding the back of the net, they had a number of great scoring chances. Karri Ramo was sharp early and he'd stay that was the entire game.
The second period was where everything fell apart. In one five minute stretch, Calgary would score three more goals -- two on really impressive tip plays in front of the net that could not have been better calculated by NASA engineers. Semyon Varlamov had no chance, but it wasn't his night anyway. He would be pulled for backup Calvin Pickard who would hold down the fort admirably for the remaining 26:53. Unfortunately, the offense at that point already looked (and played) defeated.
Boxscore and Video Highlights
- Karri Ramos - The Flames goalie turned everything away tonight against an Avalanche team that has been scoring a lot of goals. Got a little help from the posts tonight (how many of those were there?!), but you tip your hat to a shutout every time.
- Flames' 4th Line - This group dominated all night. Really good games by Jooris and Stajan.
- The Avalanche - Duh.