SUN Hockey Pool

Light's on in Tampa

STEVE MACFARLANE -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:51 AM ET

TAMPA, Fla. -- While the Calgary Flames' defensive game often blew up in their faces, Kristian Huselius and Jarome Iginla exploded on the scoresheet.

It's a good thing, too, because the action in the 9-6 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning would have been much more difficult to digest had the outcome gone the other way in spite of the dynamic duo's double serving of hat-tricks.

"That would have been brutal. You can't be happy if you lose. That would have been tough on me," said Huselius, who recorded his first NHL triple in the goal column and added a pair of assists for a career night.

"I had a lot of two-goal games and finally I got the hat-trick. It's just a nice feeling to get the win at the same time."

The win came thanks to Iginla, who scored all three of his goals in the third period to help the Flames pull away for the last time in the back-and-forth contest.

But the Iginla says he didn't upstage his linemate, who assisted on his second goal.

"No, no. He was absolutely flying," he said with a laugh. "He's the one that got it going."

Huselius knew his captain would eventually join the party. He was told just that before the third.

"He told me before that he's going to get one for sure. He just exploded in the third," said Huselius. "He's one of those guys who can do it. He's quick with his shot and everything. It was nice to see him fire those shots in the net."

Watching video is a normal part of the team's review process, especially in a game with so many defensive breakdowns. In this case, there's the risk of sensory overload.

"There'll be no video. Absolutely no video. I told (assistant coach) Rob Cookson, I said, 'There's no video with this game. Put it on the shelf, let's move on,' " said a smiling head coach Mike Keenan, who could joke about the odd game because of the outcome.

It was tough enough to watch live, albeit extremely exciting for the 19,026 screaming fans in attendance who left their seats often during the hectic action but didn't get up for good until Iginla's last goal had them heading for the exits at the St. Pete Times Forum.

"We'll take the two points. It was a race to 10 -- whoever got there first -- and we ran out of time," said Keenan. "Neither coach would be happy with this game in terms of defensive play. If you're really an offensive-minded coach, you love it. I don't know if there's any in the league, though."

Owen Nolan potted an empty-netter, while Adrian Aucoin and Daymond Langkow scored back-to-back goals in the first period for the Flames.

Martin St. Louis scored a pair, with Vincent Lecavalier, Brad Richards, Vaclav Prospal and Andre Roy adding singles.

Dion Phaneuf had five helpers for the Flames. He earned credit for his rush with the Flames on the tail end of a powerplay in the opening seconds of the third period that led to Iginla's first score just 25 ticks in.

"They're not easy games to play in because they're back and forth, back and forth," said Phaneuf, whose team has now won three straight on this road trip that continues tonight in Carolina. "That was a big test for our team to play in one of those and it was a big win for our team."


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