Godard's automatic suspension overturned

RANDY SPORTAK -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 10:34 AM ET

ST. LOUIS -- Upon further review, Calgary Flames enforcer Eric Godard didn't receive the banishment.

Godard was assessed his third instigator penalty Saturday night in Colorado against the Avalanche, but the two-game suspension that's to come with that infraction was rescinded by the league yesterday -- and he was able to play in the team's 3-0 loss to the St. Louis Blues.

"I really thought they would have, so I was happy they did," Godard said. "I'm not gonna say anything about the refs. I think they did a pretty good job that night. That's a call in the rule book, so they've got to make the call. They reviewed the tape, and there was obviously some other circumstances going on."

Godard was flagged when he came to the defence of Dion Phaneuf after the blueliner was cross-checked in the chest by Avs tough-guy Scott Parker. Parker and Phaneuf had an altercation in the pre-game warm-up -- Parker hit Phanauf in retribution for a run-in he had with Avs goalie Jose Theodore earlier in the week in Calgary -- and on two occasions in the game, the Avs enforcer tried to goad the Flames blueliner into a fight with a very visible punch to the head after the whistle.

Parker was given a major for the cross check and a game misconduct, while Godard was assessed the instigator.

Head coach Mike Keenan wasn't surprised the league overturned the suspension.

"As I said, we could have lost the player for a couple games suspension going to the aid of a teammate who was down injured," Keenan said. "I think the officials tried to get in there to protect the injured player, (but) when Parker came in and clubbed him, the referee jumped back and away from the situation for his own safety, and that left Phaneuf very vulnerable."

Good thing for the Flames, because for the second straight game, Godard's line did a good job. On Saturday, Godard, Stephane Yelle and Dustin Boyd scored once and had as many shots on goal through the first two periods -- seven -- as the whole Avs team. They even pinned the Avs' top line, featuring Paul Stastny, for a few shifts.

Last night in St. Louis, the Blues managed to throw their to unit of Paul Kariya, Brad Boyes and Doug Weight against the Flames' fourth-line trio of Godard, Yelle and Mark Smith a few times, yet the Flames trio was the one generating scoring chances.

"They gave us some energy and played hard. They did their job," Keenan said.

Godard also fought Dwayne King in an even bout.


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