Calgary Flames Playoff Guide

Calgary Flames Playoff Guide
Calgary Flames Playoff Guide
Stanley Cup Playoffs

Calgary Flames Playoff Guide

Cheer on the Calgary Flames as they compete in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
By
Grant Farhall

Grant Farhall is play-by-play voice of the Calgary Roughnecks and contributing member of the Flames’ fan site Calgary Puck.

The Calgary Flames have been at, or near, the top of the NHL’s Western Conference for most of the regular season thanks to their powerful offense, deep blue line, and team chemistry.

And they have some history on their side. It was 1989 when Lanny McDonald and the boys captured the franchise’s first, and only, NHL championship. In 2004, the club came within inches of winning their second Stanley Cup.

Does this team have some playoff magic in them? Definitely. And you’ll want to be part of it. Here’s some tips and tricks on how to cheer on the Calgary Flames in the Stanley Cup Playoffs

The Calgary Flames are a high scoring team this year.

The Calgary Flames are a high scoring team this year.

Everything you need to know about the team

If you haven’t been following the Flames closely, here’s a crash course.

First, this club is exciting. At times, they seem to score goals at will.

The dynamic duo of Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan became even more powerful this year with the addition of Elias Lindholm, acquired via a summer trade with the Carolina Hurricanes. Together, the trio forms one of the top scoring lines in the league.

The “3M Line” of Michael Backlund, Matthew Tkachuk and Michael Frolik, are capable of both scoring goals and shutting down the other team’s top line.

The forward ranks are rounded out with a combination of grit, secondary scoring, and youthful exuberance. James “The Real Deal” Neal has had an off year but could make everyone forget it with some timely goal scoring in the post-season.

The blue line is anchored by Captain Mark Giordano, who is putting together a Norris Trophy worthy season at the age of 35 as the best defenseman in the league. He has been reunited with former partner, TJ Brodie, and the pair have rediscovered their chemistry. The second unit of Noah Hanifin and Travis Hamonic are rock solid. The emergence of Rasmus Andersson and Oliver Kylington has provided the club with a great deal of depth on the blue line, with four other rearguards possibly seeing action come the post-season.

Behind the bench is Coach Bill Peters, who has made all the right moves this year and could be in the running for the NHL’s Coach of the Year. Overall it a highly skilled and deep group, that has the pieces to make some noise.

The Stanley Cup Playoffs are one of the toughest in professional sports.

The Stanley Cup Playoffs are one of the toughest in professional sports.

What you need to know about the NHL playoffs

The road to the Stanley Cup is considered one of the toughest in sports.

Each of the four rounds is a best of 7 games. The first team to get to 4 wins moves on. The higher seed enjoys home ice advantage for 4 of those 7 games, including the deciding game 7, if necessary.

That means the winning team could play up to 28 games before hoisting the Stanley Cup.

If a game goes to overtime, there is no 3 on 3 hockey or shootouts. It is standard 5 on 5 hockey until someone scores. And that can take a long time. The longest NHL game in history took 116 minutes and 30 seconds of overtime. Keith Primeau’s overtime winner came after over 92 minutes of overtime for the Philadelphia Flyers over the Pittsburgh Penguins, back in 2000. That’s over four extra periods!

Playoff hockey tends to be more intense and physical. Goal scoring becomes tougher. Every team that makes it to the post-season is good. Pretenders will quickly reveal themselves and bow out early. And when two good teams match up, the line between winning and losing becomes thinner than the edge of a skate blade.

Celebrate a Calgary Flames playoff goal at the Scotiabank Saddledome.

Celebrate a Calgary Flames playoff goal at the Scotiabank Saddledome.

How to get tickets to the Calgary Flames playoff games

The Calgary Flames are selling their tickets officially in a number of ways. If you subscribe to their e-newsletter for Insider Offers at calgaryflames.com/playoffs, you’ll be automatically entered to receive pre-sale offers. General public tickets will be released on Ticketmaster, at local Calgary Co-op stores, and at Calgary Golf Town stores. There is full information on the Calgary Flames official website.

Flames fans in Calgary at the Red Lot

Check out the Red Lot to celebrate with other Calgary Flames fans outside the Saddledome

Official Calgary Flames playoffs viewing parties

The Calgary Flames are starting a new tradition in 2019 with the Red Lot Community Viewing Party on the Stampede Grounds next to the Saddledome for all home playoff games. Fans can watch the game on massive screens, enjoy live music, and meet Harvey the Hound, along with face painting, interactive activities, and prizes. This event is free for all ages and starts three hours prior to puck drop until the end of the game.

You can kick off the first round of the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs with the Red House Playoff Launch Party at the Big Four Roadhouse (about a 5 minute walk across the Saddledome’s parking lot) on Thursday April 11, from 5:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. Watch the game, win prizes, and enjoy live music from Calgary’s own Smalltown DJs and The Dudes. All this Flames fan action is hosted by Fubar star Terry Cahill. This is an 18+ event and costs $10.00 with proceeds going towards the Calgary Flames Foundation. Get your tickets ahead of time or purchase them at the door.

Cheer on the Calgary Flames during and after the game at National on 17th.

Cheer on the Calgary Flames during and after the game at National on 17th.

Where to watch Calgary Flames playoff games on TV and hang out in the city

If you can’t get tickets, and when the team is on the road, you have a ton of choices on where to join fellow members of the C of Red to cheer on the squad.

For family-friendly festivities, the City of Calgary is hosting viewing parties for away games at Olympic Plaza, with a big screen, food trucks, and festivities suitable for even the youngest hockey fans. 

During playoff runs, Flames Fans gather wherever the city would consider nightlife and pub central. In 1989, the party was down on Electric Avenue, but all the joints in this area are long since closed and that stretch of 11th Avenue is now more of a business hub.

Gear up for the Calgary Flames playoffs.

Gear up for the Calgary Flames playoffs.

What you’ll need to look like a Calgary Flames fan

A jersey is a must, but careful consideration must be paid to the name to put on the back. Don’t put your own name. That will draw the ire of any fan. You can’t go wrong with the popular choices like a #13 Gaudreau, #23 Monahan, or #19 Tkachuk.

But you can also choose to be bold. Every playoff produces surprise heroes, and you’ll look pretty smart if that’s the name on the back of your sweater. My personal suggestion this year would be Derek Ryan. He’s this team’s version of Stephane Yelle and exactly the kind of guy you win with. Plus it’s only five letters so it will be more affordable! Oscar Fantenberg, on the other hand, will cost you.

Outside the jersey, grab yourself a new cap and car flag. Have fun with it and show your pride!

Be part of the C of Red for the Stanley Cup Playoffs in Calgary.

Be part of the C of Red for the Stanley Cup Playoffs in Calgary.

Why the NHL playoffs are a big deal

There’s nothing like the march to the Stanley Cup.

It is where rivalries are born and re-born. It is where the moments that create heroes happen.

For all but one franchise, it will end in heartbreak.

But for one special team, and their fans, it will all come together. They will complete a journey that culminates with each player lifting Lord Stanley’s Cup over their head.

Memories will be made. New life-long fans will be created. And for those that have followed their team through thick and thin, it will finally all be worth it.