For the first time since Halloween, the Calgary Flames are in playoff position. Yes, that's true. Okay, fine, you can go look it up. And yes, it happened as a result of a 3-2 Tuesday night win against the reigning Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks.
Mikael Backlund opened the scoring for Calgary in the first period before Patrick Kane tied things up in the second for Chicago. The contest stayed equal until the 8:37 mark of the third when Curtis Glencross put the Flames ahead on a beautiful shot off a beautiful dish from Olli Jokinen. Rene Bourque added an empty netter (also a power play goal) late to ice the Blackhawks.
The Flames have picked up points in eight straight games now and they're showing no sign of a slow down, especially with lowly Ottawa coming to town tonight. They've climbed all the way from 14th place in the West, a position they occupied not much longer than a month ago.
Chicago, meanwhile, sits all the way down in 11th place. Then again, with the wild pace of the Western Conference playoff race these days, that's not exactly all that far out of the picture.Hell, when you consider games in hand and the standings on an actual points per game basis, Chicago's actually in front of Calgary.
Don't tell the Flames, though, because they won't listen. The northward ascent continues.