Edmonton Oilers netminder Mike Smith put it rather succinctly on Saturday night: everybody loves a goalie fight. Goalie fights, or even goalies fighting anybody, are exceedingly rare.
Here’s a quick snapshot of the goalie-related fisticuffs in Flames franchise history.
January 19, 1973: Phil Myre (Atlanta) vs. Bob Johnson (St. Louis)
It was the first season in Atlanta. The team was not good. In the midst of a 2-1 loss to the Blues, just two days after a tense 3-3 tie in St. Louis, goalie Phil Myre tussled with Blues backstop Bob Johnson.
December 14, 1975: Phil Myre (Atlanta) vs. Paul McIntosh (Buffalo)
Myer waited a couple seasons for his next scrap. This time the Flames were in the midst of a 7-4 victory over the Sabres when tensions bubbled over and Myre fought Sabres defenseman Paul McIntosh.
February 4, 1977: Dan Bouchard (Atlanta) vs. Gilles Gilbert (Boston)
By 1976-77, the Flames were starting to become a notable hockey concern. Dan Bouchard was a fiery netminder – his old school mask actually hangs outside the Saddledome, one of the rare tributes to the Atlanta years in the building – who frequently got into altercations with opposing players crowding his crease. He fought Boston goalie Gilles Gilbert midway through the season in the midst of a 6-3 Atlanta win.
December 16, 1978: Dan Bouchard (Atlanta) vs. Bobby Clarke (Philadelphia)
Shocker: Bobby Clarke fought a goalie. Also shocker: Bouchard fought a forward. The Flyers were losing 7-2.
October 11, 1985: Marc d’Amour (Calgary) vs. Bryan Hayward (Winnipeg)
In the very first game of the season – an 8-3 Flames win – d’Amour fought Jets goalie Bryan Hayward. It was unquestionably the highlight of d’Amour’s NHL tenure.
March 20, 2004: Miikka Kiprusoff (Calgary) vs. Tomas Vokoun (Nashville)
The Flames were losing 3-1 at home and the game got a bit chippy. Big scrums formed twice in the game’s dying seconds, culminating with the first goalie brawl in nearly 20 years – between a pair of All-Star goaltenders.
(On January 24, 2006, Phillippe Sauve got tossed for fighting with Colorado’s David Aebischer. Aebischer only received a roughing minor.)