SUN Hockey Pool

Flames snap losing skid

RANDY SPORTAK, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:52 AM ET

DETROIT -- Talk about an amazing way to snap a losing skid.

Down by three goals late in the second period and still trailing by a pair in the waning minutes, the Calgary Flames ended their three-game losing skid with a wild comeback and a 6-5 shootout win over the Detroit Red Wings last night.

"You gotta love it," said Flames left winger Michael Cammalleri. "We come in here pretty desperate and having played a few games that didn't go our way, but it was pretty vital to have that win.

"To get one like that, a lot of smiles and high-fiving in here right now, and we'll carry that emotion through."

As victories go in the NHL, they're all worth two points.

But some are worth more than others, which you could tell by the Flames' reaction to knocking off the defending Stanley Cup champs.

"That's a big win. As big as any this year," captain Jarome Iginla said. "It's a chance to really get momentum, put a stop to a slide and feel good about ourselves."

Things were sure looking bleak, though.

The Flames were on the verge of dropping a fourth straight in regulation before Jamie Lundmark scored twice and Olli Jokinen netted his second of the night in the final four minutes to actually give their team a 5-4 lead.

It was only to see Dan Cleary pull the hosts even with 41.4 seconds remaining by banging home a rebound, the only shot on net Detroit mustered in the third period.

But Jokinen iced the game on the shootout.

"We can use this as a turning point," said Jokinen, who has scored five goals in as many games since the Flames acquired him at the trade deadline. "We got to play the way we did in the third period for a full 60 minutes in the next game. It's a high-character win."

The Flames (40-22-6) have won three of five shootouts this season and now hold a nine-point edge on the Vancouver Canucks in the chase for the Northwest Division title.

It's hard to imagine they'll experience another game as wacky as the emotionally wringing clash last night before 20,066 at Joe Louis Arena.

The way the game ended almost made it possible to forget what happened during the first period, in which the visiting Flames surrendered a franchise-record 28 shots on goal.

Calgary survived as well as could be expected an opening frame in which they were shorthanded nearly six consecutive minutes -- four minutes of which they were down five-on-three -- with five of their six defencemen sent to the sin bin.

Through it all, a Detroit team with the NHL's best powerplay scored only one of their three powerplay goals in the game.

Nicklas Lidstrom and Valtterri Filppula scored in the second to make it a 4-1 count, but Daymond Langkow replied to put Calgary within two and set up a third period which was one-sided in the Flames' favour.

Henrik Zetterberg and Mikael Samuelsson also scored for Detroit (44-15-9).

Kiprusoff stopped 40 shots, plus two of three shootout attempts, for his 40th win of the season.


Videos

Photos