GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP)—The Calgary Flames are finally up to full speed.
After winning once in their first five games, the Flames ran their winning streak to three Saturday night with a 4-1 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes.
“This was a huge win for us and a big two points on the road,” Phaneuf said. (Phoenix) came hard at us and we responded with a solid 60 minutes.”
“This was an emotional division game, and we knew we had to elevate our game,” Iginla said. “I thought we moved the puck well and put the puck where we knew we could get it. Good puck movement was the key for us in this win.”
In dropping the fourth game in its last five, Phoenix quickly fell behind by two goals. Todd Fedoruk scored the Coyotes’ lone goal at 16:58 of the opening period, but the effort was overshadowed by the strong Calgary defense.
“We talked for two days how Calgary would come in here and how they were going to play,” Phoenix coach Wayne Gretzky said. “They did exactly what we knew they would do, and unfortunately, we had only a handful of guys ready for that sort of work ethic.”
The Flames opened the scoring on Bertuzzi’s goal at 3:25 of the opening period. Bertuzzi was the last Calgary player to touch the puck before it deflected off Phoenix defenseman Zbynek Michalek’s stick and into the net. Bertuzzi has six goals in eight games this season after scoring 14 in 68 games last season for Anaheim.
On the goal, goalie Milkael Tellqvist said he was clearly distracted in front.
“The puck bobbled in front of the net a couple of times,” Tellqvist said. “I saw the puck bounce off me and then hit (Coyotes’ Daniel) Cacillo’s skate,and that’s bad luck.”
The puck then deflected off Michalek’s stick.
Calgary made it 2-0 when Prust converted a 2-on-1 rush up the ice into his first of the season at 15:03 of the first period.
The Flames regained a two-goal advantage when defenseman Phaneuf scored with the man advantage at 6:31 of the second period. As the puck deflected off Tellqvist’s shoulder and bounced off the cross bar, Phaneuf crashed down the slot, picked up the loose puck and scored on a backhander.
The complete Calgary effort did not escape the attention of coach Mike Keenan.
“We limited their chances to score, and that was important for us,” Keenan said. “We defended the goal well and did the small things to get a chance to win. Right now, we have four lines playing well, and we need that consistency going forward.”
Phoenix’s Olli Jokinen played in his 383th consecutive NHL game, the second longest active streak. Minnesota’s Andrew Brunette of Minnesota is the leader. … Fedoruk has 27 goals in 429 career games…. Iginla’s had two straight three-point games. He scored three games Thursday night at Nashville.