Calgary held the NHL’s top producers off the scoresheet and Flames forward Tyler Toffoli scored twice in a 3-1 win over the visiting Edmonton Oilers on Monday.
Johnny Gaudreau contributed an insurance goal and his 50th assist of the season for the Flames (34-14-7), which continued atop the Pacific Division with a 14th win in their last 16 games.
Jacob Markstrom stopped 27 of 28 shots in front of a season-high 17,246 at the Saddledome. The arena holds 19,289.
Devin Shore replied for Edmonton (30-23-4), which remained two points out of a wild-card berth in the Western Conference.
The NHL’s co-leaders in points — Edmonton’s Leon Draisaitl and Connor McDavid — didn’t register one Monday.
“You can’t expect Brad Malone to come in here and score three goals tonight, right?” Draisaitl said. “That’s our job. That’s on Connor, that’s on me, that’s on the top guys that are getting paid to create. Probably didn’t do enough of that tonight.”
Mikko Koskinen turned away 26 of 29 in the season’s first instalment of the Battle of Alberta at the Saddledome.
A Dec. 23 game in Calgary was rescheduled because a COVID-19 outbreak among the Flames.
The Oilers beat the visiting Flames 5-2 on Oct. 16 and 5-2 on Jan. 22. Their regular-season series concludes March 26 in Calgary.
Toffoli got his first taste of the NHL’s Battle of Alberta. The Flames acquired the forward from Toronto in a trade with the Montreal Canadiens on Feb. 14.
Toffoli scored his sixth and seventh goals for Calgary since becoming a Flame.
“I was definitely excited not only because of that, but the way the standings are,” he said. “It was just a just a really important game for us.
“I thought we did a good job of containing their top guys. Marky made some big saves at the right time. I thought we just did a really good job overall and not really letting them get to their game as much as they probably wanted to.”
Edmonton dropped to 7-5-1 since Jay Woodcroft took over as head coach for fired Dave Tippett on Feb. 10.
“We played a solid game I think, but you’re not going to win many games when you score one goal,” Draisaitl said. “I don’t think it’s ever a question of competing or battle level. We’re playing our hearts out.”
Calgary opera singer Stephania Romaniuk sang the Ukrainian anthem before George Canyon’s O Canada on Monday.
It was the second straight home game that the Flames made a gesture of support to a country attempting to repel Russia’s invasion.
After a scoreless first period, Calgary led 2-0 on back-to-back Toffoli goals heading into the third.
Shore halved the deficit at 4:57 of the third, but Gaudreau, scoring on a partial breakaway with just under three minutes remaining, restored Calgary’s two-goal cushion.
The puck deflected off referee Dan O’Rourke’s leg to Oiler Derek Ryan, whose pass then bounced off the leg of Flames’ defenceman Nikita Zadorov out to Shore to score Edmonton’s lone goal of the game.
Toffoli, who was stopped on a short-handed breakaway in the first period, took a backhand feed from Adam Ruzicka and wired a wrist shot far side on Koskinen at 9:54 of the second period.
He shovelled a rebound upstairs for a power-play goal at 6:37. Gaudreau’s assist on Toffoli’s first goal was his sixth in five games.
Markstrom stretched across his crease to rob Malone and also corralled an Evander Kane blast during an Edmonton power-play early in the second period.
Calgary held the fourth-best power-play in the NHL to 0-for-4 in the game and went 1-for-4 with a man advantage.
“We didn’t have to block a lot of shots tonight,” Flames head coach Darryl Sutter said. “We put a lot of pressure on them in key areas. Entering the zone, they didn’t get much entry time or zone time, to be quite honest.”
The Flames are at home Tuesday to the Washington Capitals, who face the Oilers in Edmonton on Wednesday.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 7, 2022.
Donna Spencer, The Canadian Press
‘Cautiously optimistic’: Lawyer for trucker in Broncos crash waiting on Federal Court
By Bill Graveland in Calgary
A lawyer for a former truck driver who caused the deadly Humboldt Broncos bus crash says he’s cautiously optimistic that he will get the chance to argue against his client’s possible deportation before Federal Court.
In 2019, Jaskirat Singh Sidhu was sentenced to eight years after pleading guilty to dangerous driving causing death and bodily harm in the Saskatchewan crash that killed 16 people and injured 13 others.
The Canada Border Services Agency recommended in March that Sidhu be handed over to the Immigration and Refugee Board to decide whether he should be deported to India.
Michael Greene, Sidhu’s lawyer, said if the Federal Court decides not to hear the case, the deportation process would continue.
He said all written arguments with the Federal Court were filed in July, adding that no news can be good news when waiting for the court to make its decision.
“I’m cautiously optimistic, but I know enough not to get cocky about something like that,” Greene said. “Usually when it takes time, it means you’ve got an arguable case.”
It is also a high-profile case, so a judge might want to be extra careful, he said.
Court was told that the rookie Calgary trucker, a newly married permanent resident, went through a stop sign at a rural intersection and drove into the path of the Humboldt Broncos bus carrying players and staff to a junior hockey league playoff game.
The Parole Board of Canada granted Sidhu day parole in July for six months. He can get full parole after that if he follows conditions, including not contacting the families of the victims.
“Day parole means he is at home. He’s with his wife and I can’t tell you how happy that makes them,” Greene said. “They’re trying to get back to some sense of normalcy.”
Greene said even if he is granted permission to appeal before the court and is successful, the matter would be sent back to Canada Border Services Agency for another review. He said the original officer put all the weight of his decision on the gravity of the harm caused.
“You can’t get your hopes up too high,” Greene said.
“Sometimes the judge will make comments in their decision that will give some guidance to the (CBSA) officers.”
An online fundraising page set up to raise money to help keep Sidhu in Canada has reached more than $42,000.
A message from Sidhu’s wife, Tanvir Mann, a Canadian citizen, said her husband made a “tragic mistake.”
“When confronted by the unimaginable magnitude of the consequences of his mistake, he did everything he could to make things better,” Mann writes.
“I pray that there are people out there who don’t believe that Jaskirat should be deported and are willing to contribute to my fight to be able to live out our lives in Canada.”
The Canada Border Services Agency has previously declined to comment on Sidhu’s case, but said there are multiple steps built into the process to ensure procedural fairness.
Greene said he understands that several of the victims’ families are still angry.
“It’s completely understandable. It is,” he said. “Everybody deals with grief and loss in their own way.”
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 1, 2022.
Local moving company donating 101 moves to support vulnerable Canadians this holiday season
Submitted by Two Small Men with Big Hearts Moving
Two Small Men with Big Hearts Moving is moving joy, one community organization at a time
This holiday season, Two Small Men with Big Hearts Moving (“Two Small Men”) is spreading joy, seeking to donate 101 moves to community organizations that support at-risk individuals. With inflation at an all-time high and the higher stresses that come with the holiday season and colder weather, Two Small Men is looking to give back to the local markets they operate in during this time of need. This marks the third year for this initiative, which Two Small Men was inspired to launch in 2020, following the hardships of COVID-19. The campaign has grown year-over-year, from 25 donated moves in 2020, to 80 moves in 2021, and now with a goal of 101 moves for 2022.
Two Small Men has a long history in Red Deer having supported the Red Deer Food Bank, Bridges Community Living, and the Alberta Motor Association in past years. They are also always actively searching for new community organizations to partner with to support with donated moving services.
This holiday season, Two Small Men will be helping organizations that support vulnerable communities with everything from moving mass amounts of food to local food banks, to supporting shelters with moving individuals into new homes, to moving toys for underprivileged children.
Two Small Men’s community-first mindset is a key part of its identity. Written right into the name, it is a moving company with a big heart, that cares deeply about giving back. Two Small Men has developed a robust community giving program that supports a variety of non-profit and charitable organizations with in-kind moving services, donation collection initiatives, and other financial contributions. Each year, the business redirects 10 per cent of its annual profits to community giving and other charitable operations. In 2022, Two Small Men projects this will translate into a donation fund of $200,000, with the goal of growing to give $750,000 annually in the next 10 years.
“Moving people’s possessions is our business, but the heart of what we do is really all about supporting the people who make up our communities,” says Addison Parfeniuk, CEO, Two Small Men Big Hearts Moving. “We know that the winter season can be an especially challenging time for many people, and it is our hope that by partnering with local organizations such as the Red Deer Food Bank, we will be able to fill the real needs of real people in the Red Deer community.”
Charitable and non-profit organizations are encouraged to submit their moving needs for consideration in this year’s Season of Giving campaign.
For more information, please visit https://twosmallmen.com/about-us/giving-back/.
About Two Small Men
Two Small Men with Big Hearts Moving is a Canadian moving company focused on supporting customers through every stage of their move, big or small. Founded in 1982, the company has 25 offices across the country with major operations in Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver, Kelowna, and Winnipeg, and a fleet of more than 100 moving trucks. Committed to giving back to their communities, they donate 10 per cent of their profits each year to relevant charities and organizations that are serving the community.
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