Iginla scores a pair as Flames down Coyotes
CALGARY — Calgary captain Jarome Iginla scored twice Sunday night and the Flames had goals 23 seconds apart in the game’s final two minutes to rally back for a 5-4 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes.
It was a turbulent third period for the home team, who had surrendered a 3-2 lead held entering the final 20 minutes.
In the middle of it all was Iginla, who entered the night with one goal on the season and just two in his last 28 games.
Iginla tied the game at 18:37 when he got just enough of his stick on a cross-ice pass from Alex Tanguay, to bounce the puck past Phoenix goaltender Mike Smith.
With the Scotiabank Saddledome sell-out crowd of 19,289 still buzzing, Calgary took the lead with Lee Stempniak wheeling out of the corner and hitting Curtis Glencross with a perfect feed.
Glencross one-timed a slapshot past Smith, stunning those on the visiting bench.
Tim Jackman and Mike Cammalleri also scored for Calgary (7-7-3), which wraps up its three-game homestand with back-to-back victories against two teams it is chasing in the Western Conference.
Raffi Torres had a pair to lead the way for Phoenix (8-7-3). Michael Stone and Nick Johnson also scored.
Trailing 3-2 entering the third period, Torres notched his second of the night at 2:22.
The Coyotes winger started the sequence with a nifty behind-the-back pass to defenceman Zbynek Michalek as he crossed the Flames’ blue-line. Torres then raced for the net and buried Michalek’s return pass behind Joey MacDonald.
At 8:48, Nick Johnson put the Coyotes into the lead backhanding in a rebound from Oliver Ekman-Larsson’s point shot.
An eventful second period saw Phoenix score twice to erase a 1-0 deficit before Calgary stormed back with two goals in the final four mintues of the period to regain a one-goal lead.
Phoenix tied it 1-1 at 5:32 on a tough break for Flames defenceman Jay Bouwmeester.
He had Michael Stone’s point shot carom off defensive partner Mark Giordano in front and hit him in the skate as he tried to control it and bound straight into the net.
The goal came six seconds after the Coyotes were put right back onto the power play for the third time in the period. Boosted by a couple key faceoff wins by Blake Comeau, the Flames had just finished effectively killing off a 1:43 two-man advantage.
As the gate opened to let Matt Stajan back onto the ice to return the Flames to even strength, the Flames centre poked the puck off the stick of Keith Yandle while he was still standing inside the penalty box. On the rarely seen play, Stajan was correctly assessed an interference penalty under rule 56.2 of the NHL rule book. The crowd was displeased with the call, jeering referees Ian Walsh and Tim Peel for the remainder of the period.
Phoenix took a 2-1 lead at 14:01 of the second when Torres got behind the Flames defence on a two-on-two, was threaded a pass by former Flame Matthew Lombardi, and tucked a backhand behind MacDonald.
Iginla tied the game 2-2 at 16:26 of the second period, sliding a harmless-looking backhander towards the net that slipped through the pads of Smith.
Calgary surged ahead 3-2 with 35 seconds left in the period. A stretch of prolonged pressure in the Coyotes end was finished off by Cammalleri, who took a centring pass from Glencross and from the high slot fired a shot into the top corner.
Calgary failed to score on 30 shots against Smith when the two sides met last Tuesday. On this night, the Flames would see their first shot go in.
The unlikely goal scorer was Jackman, the Flames rugged fourth line winger who scored his first goal and point in 52 games, dating back to Dec. 29, 2011.
Chris Butler’s shot didn’t make it through a crowd in front but Jackman collected it and, as he cruised by the net, he shovelled a backhand under Smith’s arm.
Notes: Calgary RW Akim Aliu (lower body) was injured in his season debut Saturday and was replaced by Roman Cervenka ... Calgary LW Steve Begin played in his 500th career game ... Iginla’s two points gives him 1,086 in his career, moving him to within two points of Theo Fleury for 59th on the NHL all-time list.