Flames look to punch ticket to Pacific Division Final Friday night
Flames look to punch ticket to Pacific Division Final Friday night
Blake Coleman knows what it takes to win a Stanley Cup. The 30-year-old out of Plano, Texas won back-to-back championships with the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Coleman saw his team struggle for two periods against the Dallas Stars on Wednesday night. He and others in the locker room knew they would have to be a lot better in the third if they wanted to take a 3-2 lead in the series.
Coleman says there were some things said in between periods.
"You know I don't want to get too much into detail but it's that time of the year that when you have a really good team like we do you don't want to let opportunities like this slip by," he said.
"You know I feel like our group is a special group and sometimes you just need that reminder that chances like this just don't happen every year and you've got to be willing to pay the price to create those life long memories because these are the games that you remember."
HARDEST GAME AHEAD
Obviously the message sunk in. The Flames were a completely different team in the third, outshooting the Stars 16-5 in the final frame. Goals by Mikael Backlund, Andrew Mangiapane and an empty netter by Trevor Lewis gave the Flames a 3-1 comeback victory.
Calgary Flames defenceman Nikita Zadorov (16) checks Dallas Stars centre Radek Faksa (12) during second period NHL first-round playoff series action on Wednesday May 11, 2022. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Larry MacDougal)
Coleman said it'll be even tougher on Friday night when the Flames and Stars face off in Dallas.
"You know if there's something I've learned from the last few years it's that closing a team out is the hardest part of a series," he said.
"Winning that fourth game is the hardest game you've got to win. There's still a lot of work ahead of us here and they're going to be a proud group and you've got to put them in position where they just, they don't want it anymore."
MATCHING THE DESPERATION
Veteran defenceman Chris Tanev said the Flames have to be ready to match the Stars' best on Friday night.
"There will be desperation. They're going to be extremely hard-working and try to do everything right," Tanev said.
"We need to match that intensity and play as hard as we can for 60 minutes."
Meanwhile, the Hart Trophy finalists were announced today and Flames forward Johnny Gaudreau wasn't on that list.
The Hart Trophy goes to the player deemed most valuable to his team. Auston Matthews, Connor McDavid and Igor Shesterkin were announced as the finalists on Thursday morning.
St. Louis Blues' David Perron, left, chases Calgary Flames' Johnny Gaudreau during second period NHL hockey action in Calgary, Alta., Monday, Jan. 24, 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Gaudreau didn't get the nod despite a 115 point season. Tanev believes his teammate should've made the list.
"I mean obviously he's been so good for us, he'd be on my list for sure. I mean he's done whatever we've asked of him and gone above and beyond to help get this team to where we are right now," Tanev said.
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