The time between Calgary Flames shootout wins doesn't have to just be measured in games. It's now in years. Exactly one year to the day of the last Calgary victory via shootout, the Flames dropped yet another Monday, a 2-1 final to the Minnesota Wild. The disappointment went beyond losing in yet another skills competition finale -- their eighth straight and third in as many chances this season. "We get blown out in Vancouver (Saturday) and respond with an effort that could have been better. It's frustrating," said centre Blair Jones. "It's painful. We have to have -- however you want to say it -- more urgency. We've got to play with more jam." Zach Parise and Mikko Koivu both scored in the shootout for the Wild with great dekes on Flames netminder Leland Irving before the announced Saddledome sellout crowd of 19,289. Only Jiri Hudler scored for the Flames. Jones, who went first, and Alex Tanguay couldn't beat Wild netminder Niklas Backstrom. "The crappy thing is you don't score every time you go, but I wish I would have scored," said Jones, who didn't hide his disappointment. "I'm pretty angry at myself for not putting it in the back of the net and giving our team a chance to win." The Flames talk ad nauseam that shootouts are supposed to be 50-50 propositions, as if they're a flip of the coin. Not for this team, which is among the league's worst since it's inclusion and falls to 3-4-3 on the season. "Again, we got in the shootout and they scored one more than us," said Flames head coach Bob Hartley. "It's a game that was kind of tough to pinpoint where it went well or where it went wrong." Irving didn't duck about being victimized during the shootout ("I bit pretty hard on a couple of fakes," he said), but put in a strong 23-save performance. He was, again, victim of a team which provided too little offence. Throw in the fact his team added yet another goalie to the mix earlier in the day by claiming well-travelled Joey MacDonald via waivers from the Detroit Red Wings, and it couldn't have been easy to keep a positive focus.
Shootout kills Flames ... again
Calgary Sun | Feb 12