No matter if you score one or two or none, two points is what we need and coming down the stretch. We'll take one but we needed that other one, too. - Deryk Engelland
CALGARY, AB -- Deryk Engelland netted his first two goals as a member of the Calgary Flames. He’d quickly trade them in for two points, though.
“No matter if you score one or two or none, two points is what we need and coming down the stretch,” Engelland said. “We'll take one but we needed that other one, too.”
Thanks in part to Engelland, though, the Flames were able to skate away with the solo after falling 4-3 in a shootout to the Dallas Stars at Scotiabank Saddledome on Wednesday.
The point moved Calgary, currently third in the Pacific Division, one clear of the idle Los Angeles Kings and within three of the Vancouver Canucks for second. Both the Canucks and Kings have one game at hand.
“Every point is going to count at the end,” Engelland said. “It's a tight battle with a lot of teams, so we'll take every point we can get. We're trying for two every night, but if you get one, we'll take it and go.”
With the Flames trailing 2-1, Engelland got off the schneid with his first of the season and first with Calgary, sending a seeing eye shot through a crowd in front, by the blocker of Stars goaltender Kari Lehtonen and into the back of the net at 13:49 of the second period.
Trailing 3-2 in the third, Engelland struck again, sending a knuckler through the crowd and over Lehtonen’s shoulder with 8:49 remaining in regulation to force overtime and eventually the shootout, where Tyler Seguin won it for Dallas.
“[Engelland] always give us great games,” Flames coach Bob Hartley said. “He's a worker but the fact he gets his first two goals in a Flames uniform is great. I'm so glad that a player like him gets rewarded. He works hard. He takes care of all of the players on the team. He's a great leader for us, gets us two big goals. It was a good night for him, it's too bad we didn't get the two points on top of it.”
The pair helped Engelland snap a personal 77-game goal-scoring drought.
“Got to keep that (stick),” he said.
“I think my last one was in March last year, so getting on the board once is great. We're looking for two points every night but any way you can help is a great thing.”
March 7, 2014, in fact, as a member of the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Some four months later, Engelland signed a three-year contract with the Flames and took 67 skates this season before finding the back of the net -- twice. His emergence, primarily in the defensive end, has come at a key time.
With captain Mark Giordano sustaining a season-ending torn biceps injury in late February, Engelland has been asked to step up his role, skating almost exclusively alongside TJ Brodie and logging the most minutes of his brief tenure with the Flames.
In the 13 games since Giordano’s injury, Engelland has logged 20-plus minutes on seven occasions. He broke the barrier just twice through his first 55 contests.
“It's almost easier to play more minutes, maybe not physically, but mentally you're into the game every shift,” Engelland said. “When you're playing 10, 11, 12 minutes, you're maybe gripping your stick a little bit more if you're playing a little bit more.
“Your confidence goes up and your play goes up, too.”