Ducks crying fowl

ERIC FRANCIS -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 9:17 AM ET

Randy Carlyle made an accusation. Jarome Iginla responded with a promise.

One day after the Calgary Flames and Anaheim Mighty Ducks wrapped up the regular season in scrappy fashion, the Flames captain was informed the Ducks coach believed the Flames were targeting his stars.

Iginla responded by guaranteeing the Ducks more of the same.

"From our point of view, we're going to try to be as physical as we can within the rules -- I don't think that's a secret," said Iginla, whose club racked up 62 penalty minutes in Monday's meaningless 4-3 loss in Anaheim.

"That's where we have success. As far as if it's going to be the most physical (series) of all time, I don't know. It should be a really good series."

Iginla steered well clear of references to the two teams' Battle Royale in 2001 that came close to setting an NHL penalty minute record when the two brawled at the 'Dome after both goalies were run.

Truth is, both clubs are now under completely different leadership and heading in totally different directions than they were when Dumb and Dumber Duck duo Denny Lambert and Kevin Sawyer bumped with guys like Craig Berube and Bob Boughner.

What remains are two surging squads built on speed -- a weapon that has to be neutralized or the Flames, in particular, know they'll have problems.

"I don't think we're going to give Teemu Selanne extra room and let him do his thing," said Andrew Ference when told of Carlyle's post-game accusations.

"They have a lot of skill players we have to key on -- its not targeting, it's just knowing that if you don't play a certain way they're going to have an easy game.

That's exactly what they want. They don't want to be hit and battle like that, they want the open room to make their plays. We wouldn't be successful if we didn't target skill players throughout the entire year."

Pre-game suspicions the two sides would see one another four days down the road to open the playoffs were confirmed during the second intermission when the Oilers downed Colorado. It seemed to open the door for a bit more message-sending on both sides of the ice. With the post-whistle shoving and jawing increasing with every minute, an inevitable pair of fights broke out, featuring Bryan Marchment and Travis Moen, followed by Robyn Regehr and Joe DiPenta. All told, 56 of the game's 102 penalty minutes were dished out in the third frame, most of the charging and roughing variety as the two sides made it clear they no longer liked one another.

"It got a little bit chippy," said Rhett Warrener, who watched from the press box.

"I think both teams knew they'd be playing each other and were trying to establish something. It should be a fun series. I'm looking forward to it."

So too are the fans who are already planning to see plenty of hatred in Game 1.

"It ended up being a battle -- I'm sure that's what it's going to be for the whole series," said Shean Donovan. "Everybody's pretty fired up. It was like a playoff game."

You get the feeling we ain't seen nuthin' yet.


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