The War on Canada continues with a late-ish game against the Calgary Flames. For those of you (cowards) who went to sleep and missed out on the whale of a beating in Vancouver, welcome back.
For those of you who skipped watching this game too,
I hope I have good news for you. I applaud you for your foresight.
The rumblings throughout the day are true, Blash is breaking up the lines. I mean Helm on the top line with Larkin and Mantha kinds of Blashill Bingo Wheelin’. Taro Hirose makes his hometown debut with mom, dad, and grandma in the attendance, DeKeyser is back in the lineup, and Jimmy’s taking his turn in net.
P.S. we found out Darren Helm lives two doors down from Dylan Larkin and I’m ready for the FSD segment about Larkin babysitting the Helm girls.
Despite Helm, Mantha and Larkin have a scoring chance on their first shift. It is so fun watching Mantha just breeze by defensemen and set up Larkin for a quick wrister. Not to be left out, AA has his own rush on a line with Frans and Bert but no go.
Seven minutes in and Jimmy Howard makes a great save and then a fantastic save off the rebound to keep the score tied. Shortly after AA has another rush thanks to a great pass from DK, but gets bothered until he’s too close to the net to get a great shot.
Halfway through the first and the top line is back together for a minute...and the Flames score. 1-0 Calgary. And if that wasn’t enough, Green goes to the box. Are we still in Vancouver? Ehn gives his stick to Nemeth making it a 5v3 for a while but the penalty kill is successful. The reassembled Helm-Larkin-Mantha line stirs up some trouble with another scoring chance but still no go.
The last two minutes of the period will be spent on a Wings powerplay! Nothing happened. Period ends 1-0 Calgary.
Mantha again just strolls through the Flames as casual as browsing the cereal aisle. He doesn’t score but still you love to see it. Four minutes in and it’s time for another Rrrrred Wings powerplay! Hronek has two good chances after about 100 passes. WTBDNS (Wings Threaten But Do Not Score).
Halfway through the period and the Wings penalty kill fails and it’s 2-0 Calgary.
Mantha scoops up the puck and Rittich makes the save. Doesn’t he? The goal light is on. WHAT THE HELL JUST HAPPENED?
Ok the Wings score, and it’s not a Statue of Liberty moment but it’s something. Mantha gets a breakaway and shoots it into Rittich who doesn’t actually have control so the ref doesn’t blow the whistle. The puck trickles behind him gentle as a silent fart and Helm is there to tap it across the line. 2-1 Calgary. Secondary assist to the ref for accurately doing his job.
Moral of the story, it ain’t over til the ref’s whistle sings.
Two minutes to go and Frans heads to the box, so this time the period ends with a successful Wings penalty kill.
Overall, a better period with more energy, more chances, and not killing the party by coughing up a goal in the closing minutes.
Remember what I said about more energy? Let’s tap the brakes on that. I’d say slam the brakes, but that is too energetic.
Stupid Lucic forces a turnover and no chance for Howard as Bennett scores. 3-1 Calgary.
It gets worse. Hronek scores on Jimmy Howard moments later and it’s 4-1 Calgary. It was almost Lucic’s goal but luckily Derek Ryan gets credit.
Lindholm elbows Helm in the noggin’ TWICE (which the refs don’t see) and Helm retaliates with a firm slash to Lindholm’s leg (which the refs do see). Ends up in a scrap with Travis Ham-hammock and gets 5 minutes and a game misconduct. We’ll have 4v4 for 2 minutes and then on the penalty kill for 3.
More context to the Helm slash. Lindholm appears to have caught him with an elbow/shoulder to the head just prior (in addition to another previous collision). pic.twitter.com/Fa18fHYFil— Ryan Hana (@RyanHanaWWP) October 18, 2019
It was not only revenge but also an ELITE pro gamer move by Helm to give up his first line spot for Bertuzzi.
All that in the first 5 minutes.
It’s now 5-1 Calgary and the powerplay continues.
The LGD OT dream is seeming a bit less likely now.
Seriously, is this still the Vancouver game?
The Flames almost score a few times and there’s 6 minutes left to salvage some dignity.
Onward to Edmonton! :) :) :)))))))))))
...at least we beat the Habs.