When a team is down to its third string goaltender, big league stops
shouldn't be expected.
And along the same lines, to blame tonight's 3-1 set back to
goaltending alone wouldn't be fair.
Goaltender Kay Whitmore didn't have a stellar night manning the
Flames cage, but the Flames lack of finish was every bit as much at
fault than a lack of accountability in net.
If you can't score, you likely don't win, and so was the case at
the Pengrowth Saddledome on Wednesday night.
The Lightening opened the scoring late in the first period when Brad
Richards banked the puck off a fallen Whitmore from behind the net.
Chances in the first period clearly favoured the home-side, but the
Flames couldn't cash in early, and ultimately it hurt them.
Dave Andreychuk doubled the lead when he caught Whitmore frozen in
the Flame cage and put the Bolts up 2-0 six minutes into the second
The Flames answered back quickly when Dean McAmmond turned a broken
play into a highlight reel goal by converting his 8th of the season.
On the play, McAmmond took a pass from Craig Conroy and fired the
puck over the shoulder of Nikolai Khabibulin
to cut the lead to 2-1.
Early in the third the Lightening put the game out of reach by capitalizing
on a less than impressive rebound when Tim Taylor scored his fourth of
Calgary tried to force things in the end, but came up against the
flawless goaltending of Khabibulin.
In the end, while the Flames were high on the "try" index,
and likely out chanced the Bolts on the night, the lack of finish was
Many a slumping player has suggested a slump isn't a concern when a
player continues to get chances, but that excuse can only hold so much
If this roster is unable to bare down on blue chip chances the onus
falls to manger Craig Button to aquire players that possess the skills
that this squad has lacked to date.
Time will tell.