Flames Looking to End Playoff Woes
December 17, 2008 by Big Tony
In the off-season the Calgary Flames acquired a lot of players they felt would help get them over the hump (i.e. the first round of the playoffs) they have been unable to surmount since the 2004 cup finals appearance. The signing of Todd Bertuzzi, Mike Cammalleri, etc. along with sewing up Curtis Glenncross among others seem to be working pretty well so far as the Flames now sit on top of the Northwest Division after their 6-3 victory in St. Louis Tuesday night despite the three game skid that proceeded Tuesday’s game. Winning the division will be a tall order for every team in the division as it is arguably the most competitive division in the league this season, so Calgary certainly cannot count on winning it to secure decent playoff positioning. However, although the ultimate goal is to win the Stanley Cup, step one for Calgary is to win the first round and it seems this is the year that will happen. Jerome Iginla is once again playing very well leading the team in scoring and Kiprusoff’s goals against average is a solid 2.98. But what I think will accompany the high-level playoff stars like Iginla and Kiprusoff come playoff time is the team’s size. Being able to wear down opponents in a long series is what Calgary will have to do to be successful. In recent years teams they have played in the post-season have not seemed to wear down too much come games 6 and 7 allowing their offense to post high shot totals late in the series helping oust the Flames. This year I think they are better suited for a long series and if they can manage to avoid either Detroit or San Jose in the first round the Flames will advance to round two, then after that all bets are off.