A four-day layoff didn't help the Calgary Flames get their second victory of the season. A quicker turnaround could lend to better results on Saturday night though it comes in a tough meeting with the visiting Chicago Blackhawks.
Following an 0-2-1 start, the Flames picked up their first victory last Saturday with a 4-3 win over the Edmonton Oilers. They remained idle until Thursday, when they hosted a Colorado Avalanche squad playing the second of games on consecutive nights.
Two goals by Jiri Hudler and another from Alex Tanguay had the Flames even with the Avs heading into the third, but Colorado notched the go-ahead goal with 2:40 left and added an insurance tally less than two minutes later to hand Calgary a 6-3 defeat following an empty-netter.
"We gave the game away. We gave ourselves a chance to win offensively, but defensively we turned the puck over so many times in key situations and key times of the game," said Flames head coach Bob Hartley.
Hudler also had an assist and Matt Stajan notched two helpers, while Miikka Kiprusoff came up with just 16 saves. Calgary lost despite a 28-22 shot advantage.
"We weren't nearly good enough. We weren't sharp. It was a sloppy game, but it was there to be won and we didn't do that. A lot of us weren't very good tonight, myself right at the top of that," said Flames captain Jarome Iginla.
"There's no excuse, we blew a game."
Calgary will now wrap a three-game homestand before playing the first of three straight as the guest on Tuesday. It will be the just the club's second road game of the season.
Chicago is in the midst of six-game swing and has dropped the first two following a 6-0 start. However, both losses have come in a shootout, including Friday's 2-1 setback in Vancouver.
Patrick Kane scored in regulation, but the Blackhawks failed to score in the four-round shootout. The Canucks got the winner from Jordan Schroeder, who beat Corey Crawford through the pads with a wrister.
Crawford ended with 21 saves.
"Our problem was we just didn't score enough goals to win the game. We had our chances, but we just didn't make it happen," said Blackhawks forward Jonathan Toews after his club went 0-for-5 on the power play.
Chicago defenseman Michal Rozsival missed his fourth straight game with a lower body injury.
These two clubs split four meetings last year, with each team winning twice at home. That pushed Calgary's home winning streak over Chicago to four straight.
The Blackhawks, though, have won 12 of the last 16 encounters overall.