The Minnesota Wild had the perfect opportunity to get back in the win column Saturday at the Saddledome.

The Calgary Flames entered as the 12th ranked team in the Western Conference and were coming off a 9-0 drubbing on the road for its third straight loss.

However, the Flames (19-19-5) returned home after a lengthy road trip to snap its losing streak and keep the Wild in a tail spin with a 3-1 win.

The Wild came out strong and were in control for two periods.

But an early third period goal by Lance Bouma, the first of his career, gave the Flames a 1-0 lead.

The Wild unraveled as the Flames built its lead to three.

Jarome Iginla scored his 500th career goal for the eventual game-winner at the 8:33 mark of the final period. He sent a pass to the top of the crease, but it deflected off Marek Zidlicky and Mikko Koivu before going into the net.

The Wild (21-15-6) had opportunity after opportunity before Dany Heatley finally got a puck past Miikka Kiprusoff to cut the deficit to 3-1. Heatley took a pass from Koivu out of the corner and found a little room between Kiprusoff’s pads. Devin Setoguchi, who easily should have scored at least two goals early in the game, recorded the second assist.

The Wild’s top line of Koivu, Heatley and Setoguchi combined for 12 shots on goal, but needs to start converting on those opportunities.

Kyle Brodziak had a chance to get the Wild within one, but Kiprusoff kept the momentum in the Flames favor with a tremendous save. Brodziak grabbed Clayton Stoner’s shot off the boards behind the goal and sent a shot toward the wide open goal, but Kiprusoff dove across the goal mouth to get his stick on the shot and deflected it wide of the net.

The Wild returns home Tuesday to take on the San Jose Sharks in what will be, barring an unexpected injury, Matt Cullen’s 1,000th career game.

Three Stars

No. 3 – Curtis Glencross. The Flames forward scored a goal.

No. 2 – Miikka Kiprusoff. The Flames goaltender made several very good saves, including what may be the best save by any goaltender.

No. 1 – Jarome Iginla. The Flames forward scored his 500th career goal.


Minnesota    0 0 1 – 1

Calgary        0 0 3 – 3

       First Period – None. Penalties – Brodie, Cgy (elbowing), 14:25; Clutterbuck, Min (interference), 19:30.

       Second Period – None. Penalties – Glencross, Cgy (hooking), 1:00; Babchuk, Cgy (roughing), 5:44.

       Third Period – 1, Calgary, Bouma 1 (Stempniak, Backlund), 2:02. 2, Calgary, Iginla 16 (Glencross, Jokinen), 8:33. 3, Calgary, Glencross 17 (Bouwmeester, Brodie), 11:15 (pp). 4, Minnesota, Heatley 13 (Koivu, Setoguchi), 13:41. Penalties – Scandella, Min (hooking), 3:37; Setoguchi, Min (boarding), 10:34.

       Shots on goal – Minnesota 9-8-11 28. Calgary 13-8-15 36.

       Goalies – Minnesota, Backstrom (33-36). Calgary, Kiprusoff (27-28). A – 19,289. Referees – Chris Lee, Jean Hebert. Linesmen – Don Henderson, Vaughan Rody.