CALGARY, AB -- The Calgary Flames are outplaying their opponents but finding the back of the net is one thing they can't seem to master is finding the back of the net.
For the second straight game, the Flames outshot the visitors by a wide margin (38-27), generated several excellent scoring chances and generally maintained control of the game but couldn't beat the Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender, Marc-Andre Fleury.
The sputtering offense is something that has frustrated the Flames lately but every player maintains that they'll simply keep working at it and the breaks will come.
"It's difficult to take," Jarome Iginla
said. "We did similar the last three games. We did a lot of good things tonight.
"It's no secret we're doing a lot of good things. We've got to find ways to score some goals. Our line is a scoring line and we've got to produce. We're not producing. In one goal games, well look how many of those (we've had). We've got to find ways to not just work hard but to put it in and get results for the guys. Lanks' line is playing great. We're going. We've just got to find ways to put the puck in the net."
Iginla has been stuck in a bit of a scoring slump lately. The Flames captain hasn't scored in six games and has been held without a point for five. He admitted his dip in scoring is bothering him.
"It's tough to take," said Iginla. "Guys are playing hard. We're doing a lot good things. In one goal games, when you're on a scoring line and not producing, you definitely feel it and take a lot of responsibility.
"So yeah, definitely you feel it and we'll keep working."
Sidney Crosby didn't disappoint the thousands of Penguins fans in the audience. On the Penguins first shot of the game, Crosby scored a goal that will on every highlight reel on Thursday morning. He split the Flames defense, skated across the blue paint and threw the puck over Kiprusoff's stick.Mark Giordano
got the Flames on the board in the second period with a power play goal that ended a five-game drought in Flames scoring with the man advantage. The Flames looked spectacular on the power play, sending shot after shot at Fleury and finally, Giordano was able to shoot it past Fleury glove-side from hash marks.
Veteran Bill Guerin gave the Penguins another lead in the game when he was able to tip Sergei Gonchar's rocket from the blueline.
The Flames kept the pressure up after Guerin's power play goal but Fleury simply said no way. He kept his team in the game as they when they were floundering and stole the win away from the hometown team.
Jamie Lundmark had an amazing opportunity to tie the game late when he one-timed a pass from the hash marks but Fleury somehow got his body over to make the clutch save. Afterwards, Lundmark could only lament on the chance and the Flames struggles to find the back of the net.
"It's tough," he said with a sigh. "The whole team had a bunch of great chances. I had two great chances. One in front of the net, I think I hit Iggy's leg, and one that Dion passed in front, I just couldn't get it up. We're getting chances so I think goals are going to come, we've just got to keep playing hard."
Tyler Kennedy scored with a 1:40 left to give the Penguins the 3-1 victory.
The Flames take on the Nashville Predators on Friday at 7:00 p.m. MST on Rogers Sportsnet West & The FAN 960.
|WHY CALGARY LOST |
|No one wants to place the blame soley on a hot goaltender but for the second time this week, the Flames outplayed their opponents but couldn't generate enough offense to get the win. They put 38 shots on Fleury and had excellent puck possession for the majority of the game but just couldn't finish. The one fault the Flames could take in this game is taking too many penalties. They took four straight in the second period and the Penguins game-winning tally came while the Flames were down a man. |
|GAME NOTES |
|D Aaron Johnson, F Brandon Prust and F Fredrick Sjostrom were healthy scratches. Lundmark was reassigned and recalled on Tuesday. He was in the lineup along with Craig Conroy ... This was the only meeting between the two teams this season. The last time the Penguins visited the Flames was Dec. 6, 2007 with Pittsburgh winning the game 3-2 in a shootout. The last time the Flames beat the Penguins in Calgary was Dec. 7 2003. |
|THE NUMBERS GAME |
|Adam Pardy played in his 100th career game ... Jay Bouwmeester played in his 389 consecutive game and is the NHL's current Ironman ... the Flames scored their 1st power play goal in 6 games. They went 0/14 in the 5 games without a power play marker ... Giordano has 6 goals this season and is a single goal away from tying his career-high ... Rene Bourque has points in 4 straight games ... Bourque and Dion Phaneuf had 5 shots on net ... Daymond Langkow had 21:03 of ice time ... Crosby played in the Pengrowth Saddledome for just the 2nd time in his career. |
"They were opportunistic. They got an important power play goal. They played well, they're a good team. They're defending Stanley Cup champions. But I thought we played them well. We did a lot of good things." - Iginla on the loss.
"One game we've got to get a few lucky ones and break out. For whatever reason, they're not going in." - Giordano on the goal-scoring drought.
"We seem to be playing the way we want to play but we've got to start getting wins. We're playing our system well, we're doing a lot of little things well but we've got to start coming out with wins." - Lundmark on his team's play.
|HARDEST WORKING FLAMES |
| || || || |
|Mark Giordano |
Scored the Flames only goal, another excellent night
| ||Rene Bourque |
He was the biggest scoring threat for the Flames all night
| ||Jamie Lundmark |
Two great scoring chances, 4 shots on net