Grade-A Chuck

RANDY SPORTAK -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 9:19 AM ET

The superstar hasn't delivered. Fortunately for the Flames, The Kid did.

While Jarome Iginla continued to search for his scoring touch, fellow right-winger Chuck Kobasew stepped to the fore with a pair of goals last night to lead Calgary to yet another Battle of Alberta victory -- a 3-1 conquest over the Edmonton Oilers before 19,289 at the Saddledome.

"There are so many rivals in the conference but, when we play the Oilers, the guys really get fired up," Kobasew said.

"I think it brings out the best in both teams, especially when you're playing them twice in one week.

"It was a good situation for us to play them right now. We need those big games to get our team going."

Kiprusoff continued the solid play he has provided during the home stand, coming up with a handful of sparkling saves in first 30 minutes to keep his team within striking distance.

The goalie was especially spectacular when his club was down 1-0 and shorthanded for four minutes due to Kobasew's high-sticking double minor.

But assistant coach Jim Playfair points out that's Kipper's job.

"In order for us to be a good defending team that creates scoring chances, that's what Miikka has got to do," Playfair said.

"He recognizes that and played much better since we got back from the road trip. He certainly gave us a chance to win and buy ourselves some time through the first half of the game."

Buoyed by the momentum gained from a terrific penalty kill, the Flames took control of the game with a pair of goals 71 seconds apart late in the middle frame.

First, Steve Reinprecht pounced on a loose puck to pot a powerplay goal and then Kobasew did the same after Oilers goalie Jussi Markkanen mishandled a sharp-angled shot.

Kobasew netted an insurance tally with four minutes remaining, a shot that just crossed the goal-line before apparently being swept away from harm. A lengthy video review session confirmed the goal was good, giving Kobasew his team-high fourth of the season and his first two-goal NHL game.

Kobasew admitted he wasn't sure he had scored.

"I couldn't see it but, from the fans' reaction, I thought it was in," he said.

"I put up my hands like it was in but, going back to the bench, I thought it probably didn't cross the line because the ref was right there. Things happen quickly and good thing for video replay.

"It was a boost for us when they did call it was a goal. I think our line was surprised but we'll take it."

Oilers forward Ethan Moreau opened the scoring when his shot deflected off the foot of Flames defenceman Dion Phaneuf and into the net.

Edmonton players must wonder what they have to do to beat the Flames, who've beat them twice in less than a week.

Calgary also claimed 10 of 12 potential points from Edmonton in the 2003-04 season -- a big reason the Flames made the playoffs and the Oilers did not.

Iginla hopes this trend continues.

"That felt good," Iginla said.

"Games against the Oilers are always big emotional swings."

Calgary opens a five-game road trip tomorrow in Dallas.


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