Flames 4, Avalanche 3

With Jarome Iginla sitting out Calgary’s contest against

Colorado, Mark Giordano acknowledged it was strange not to have the

Flames’ captain in the locker room before the game.

He’ll have to get used to it on a permanent basis now.

Mike Cammalleri scored twice in the second period and the Flames

held off the Avalanche 4-3 on Wednesday night before trading Iginla

to the Pittsburgh Penguins.

”It was weird before not seeing him obviously,” said Giordano

after the game, but before the trade was officially announced. ”We

addressed it in our team meeting. (Flames coach) Bob (Hartley) told

us he wasn’t going to play tonight.

”He’s a good friend and a great teammate. It was a little bit

tough at the start, but I thought we did a good job of playing a

good game, working hard and getting the win. Whatever happens,

we’ll hope for the best for Iggy especially.”

The Flames received college prospects Kenneth Agostino and Ben

Hanowski, and a first-round pick in this summer’s draft.

Iginla was announced as a healthy scratch two hours before the

start of the game. He sat out for the first time since April 8,

2007, in Colorado, ending his consecutive games streak at 441.

The 35-year-old Iginla is in the final year of his contract and

will be an unrestricted free agent July 1. He has nine goals and 13

assists in 31 games this season. In 1,219 career regular-season

games in 16 seasons, all with Calgary, Iginla has 525 goals and 570

assists. He has 28 goals and 21 assists in 54 career playoff games

and has played for Canada in three Olympics.

Agostino plays for Yale, and Hanowski at St. Cloud State. Both

are forwards.

Even without Iginla, the Flames got their eighth straight home

win.

”I give lots of credit to our players, because they showed

great focus,” Hartley said. ”I really believe that we did a great

job, we kept battling, we got some timely goals, and at the end

there we were able to play solid in our zone and that’s why we got

the win.

”We have lots of great veterans, so obviously leadership is not

a problem.”

Jiri Hudler and Steve Begin also scored for the Flames, while

Blake Comeau had two assists.

Joey MacDonald made 27 saves starting in place of Miikka

Kiprusoff, who had played the previous four games, including

Calgary’s 2-0 loss at Chicago on Tuesday night.

Jamie McGinn, Gabriel Landeskog and Ryan O’Reilly scored for the

Avalanche, who have lost three straight games and seven of their

previous eight. PA Parenteau had two assists.

Avs goalie Semyon Varlamov meanwhile stopped 23-of-27 shots.

Avalanche forward Matt Duchene credited the Flames for coming

out hard despite the fact they played the night before and that

they were without Iginla.

”It should have worked in our favor and it didn’t,” Duchene

said. ”They were ready to play. Distractions can hurt a hockey

team. Give them a lot of credit, they didn’t let it affect

them.”

The Flames outshot the Avs 14-2 in the first period and took a

2-0 lead on a power-play goal by Hudler and an even-strength score

by Begin, his first goal in 17 games.

McGinn scored for Colorado at 4:29 of the second before

Cammalleri answered back for Calgary just 12 seconds later to put

the Flames up 3-1.

Shortly after MacDonald made a nice glove save, the backup

goalie let in a weak goal when a pass by Landeskog bounced off the

net, then off his skate and in.

Before the end of the second period, Cammalleri one-timed a pass

from Dennis Wideman past Varlamov to put the Flames up 4-2.

The Avs poured on the pressure in the third, outshooting the

Flames 16-2, and were rewarded for their persistence when O’Reilly

scored during a two-man advantage with 7:26 to go.

In the late stages of the game, Colorado coach Joe Sacco pulled

Varlamov from the net in favor of an extra attacker. With 25.2

seconds left on the clock MacDonald made another nice glove save to

stop a shot off Duchene’s stick and preserve the victory.

”The effort was there down the stretch and at the end in the

third period,” Sacco said. ”They had the lead. They’re playing

with the lead and they played last night so they were a little bit

tired. We let them off the hook in the first period. That’s the

bottom line.”

NOTES: Cammalleri ended a nine-game goal-scoring drought. He had

also gone four straight games without a point. … Along with their

home win streak, the Flames have lost 10 in a row on the road,

going 0-9-1. … Parenteau drew an assist on McGinn’s goal to give

him two goals and two assists in his past three games. For McGinn,

it was his second goal in two games.