Great Trip Ends on Sour Note

Flames Set New Goal Drought Record in Loss

November 11th, 2002
D'Arcy McGrath

AP Photo

Pointless: Chris Drury and the other Flame guns were kept quiet again on Remembrance Day.

It's all a matter of perspective, and heightened expectations.

Ask any fan, player or coach if they'd be happy with a .500 road trip through the east before it began a week ago today, chances are you'd notice some decisive nods.

How about said trip without a minute played by the club's number one goaltender, Roman Turek?

How about two games without captain Craig Conroy?

Seven days later and it all boils down to bitter disappointment.

After jumping out with two wins and an over time loss in the three games in the New York area, the team had a great opportunity to make some serious noise on the trek.

Instead they came up very flat on a pair of weekend dates against Florida and Atlanta, with their anemic offence being the Achilles Heel that grounded their ship.

Chris Clark, who scored the team's only goal this afternoon was hoping that his ugly marker may turn things around.

"Seemed like we had lots of chances. We got behind the eight ball and couldn't fight back for some reason.", Clark told the Fan 960.

"It will be nice to get home, back to our families, I think things will turn around now that we scored that one goal."

The Thrashers opened the scoring in the first period when former first overall draft pick Patrik Stefan notched his fifth of the season, beating Flame goaltender Jamie McLennan.

That lead held through two periods, and into the third stanza ... a time that set a new record Flame record for longest duration of play between goals. The new time record stands at 191:42, or the point where Chris Clark's right shin pad put the streak to an end.

Frantisek Kaberle put a strangle hold on the affair when he notched a goal just 3:38 in to third essentially putting the Flames trip on ice.

Clark's goal brought the Flames close setting up some near miss late game heroics.

With less than 15 seconds left in the game, Flame rookie Jordan Leopold snuck in alone on goaltender Passe Nurminen but was absolutely stoned on the chance.

The loss moves the Flames overall record to an even 5-5-3-3 on the season, 2-2-0-1 on this five game road trip.

The Flames once again drop out of a playoff spot as they sit in ninth position with 16 points in 16 games, even in points to the Blue Jackets, Red Wings and Canucks, all of which have games in hand.

Next up for Calgary is the New York Rangers at home in the Pengrowth Saddledome on Thursday night.

That game opens a five game homestand, which features additional games against the Blues, Wings, Oilers and Blackhawks - all conference rivals.



Atlanta Thrashers 2
Calgary Flames 1

Kobasew Conroy Iginla
Gelinas Drury Yelle
Sloan Nichol Clark
Berube Johansson Sloan
Lydman Regehr
Gauthier Leopold
Buzek Boughner

1 Passe Nurminen - The second straight game that a Finish goaltender has given the Flames fits.

2 Frantisek Kaberle - Kaberle's third period goal turned out to be the game winner.

3 Chris Clark - Third line winger ended the Flames goal drought at 191:42, had five shots, was +1.

Less than 20 seconds left ... game one goal apart ... rookie Jordan Leopold streaks in on a break ... stoned by Passe Nurminen to preserve the win.

The Flames out shot the Thrashers by a count of 32-25 on the day. They held period edges of 10-9, 10-9 and 12-9, but only managed one goal. ... The two clubs broke even in the face off circle at 33 apiece. Oddly enough Rob Niedermayer led the way for the club winning eight of his 12 draws. ... Jarome Iginla came up with an assist on Chris Clark's goal, but has scored only once in 11 games now. He had seven shots on the day to lead the team. Illya Kovalchuk led the Thrashers with six shots. ... The Flames came up on the short end of the special teams battle once again, failing to score on six powerplay opportunities, while yielding the game winner on one of eight occasions they were short a man. ... Toni Lydman led the way in total ice time with 25:09 of ice. Robyn Regehr was second with 24:51. Frantisek Kaberle led all skaters with 27:43 of ice time.
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