January 21, 2013
Flames fans quick to forget lockout
... but get little in return with loss to Sharks

Flames' Miikka Kiprusoff leaves the ice after a 4-1 loss to San Jose Sharks in NHL action in Calgary on Sunday, Jan. 20, 2013. (Al Charest/QMI Agency)

CALGARY - Despite four months of frustration, there wasn’t a boo-bird in sight when the Calgary Flames hit the ice for the first time Sunday.

They saved their boos until the end, albeit voicing displeasure for a completely different reason.

Fact is, outside of the result, it was a triumphant return for NHL hockey in Calgary.

OK, so one season-ticket holder had his pal string two signs across his empty seats in the high-rent district, reading: “We were held hostage by greed.”

The placards mysteriously disappeared after the Flames owners had to spend an entire period staring across the ice at them.

Other than that, two weeks after the ugly lockout ended, all appeared to be forgiven and forgotten (which will surely be noted by Gary Bettman for “next time”) as part of a celebration of the game the crowd bought into fully.