Late Collapse Nixes Point

Flames Full Marks for Tie in Dallas

October 29th, 2003
Rick Charlton

Never waken a sleeping giant.

Jordan Leopold's penalty midway through the third period gave a sleepwalking Dallas team a spark of life, the Stars scoring three times in the next eleven minutes, including Jason Arnott's winner 17 seconds into overtime to beat the visiting Calgary Flames 4-3.

Reinprecht Conroy Iginla
Gelinas Lombardi Kobasew
Saprykin Yelle Donovan
Oliwa Betts Clark
Ference Lydman
Leopold Regehr
Gauthier Warrener

For the Flames this was a crushing defeat as they were in clear control of this contest through to that decisive moment. Or more precisely, the Stars looked to be accepting of their fate.

At that point, the NHL's 29th ranked penalty kill would fail in the clutch again while rookie Dany Sabourin, starting his first NHL game, marred an otherwise fine performance minutes later by allowing a soft one to Guerin on the inside post, lifting Dallas off the matt and extending the game into overtime where Arnott bagged the winner on a Brendan Morrow rebound only 17 seconds in.

Jarome Iginla also scored for the Flames while Guerin notched a hat trick for the Stars.

"I felt good for sure but I'd like to have the win," Sabourin told FAN960 after the game. "We have the point but . . . . ." "I went down, I thought I had it," Sabourin said of Arnott's winner. "The first shot was bouncing. I thought I had the puck. They came at the net and put the rebound in. I was pretty disappointed they scored. But its over and I can't wait to have my second (start)."

The overtime loss leaves the Flames at 4-4-0-1 on the year, good for nine points and a tie for seventh place in the NHL's Western Conference.

It was only Calgary's second loss in its last eight starts in Dallas.

In spite of the setback, Calgary collects three of a possible six points on its short three game road trip, finishing 1-1-0-1.

Calgary opened scoring on a quick rush that saw Craig Conroy putting a bullet pass on the tape of Jarome Iginla's stick, deflecting the puck past Marty Turco's outstretched glove at the 8:00 mark of the first period.

Guerin tied the game when he picked up a loose puck behind the net and took advantage of a miscue between Robyn Regehr and Conroy, skating in front of Sabourin and backhanding the puck home at 14:50.

But Oleg Saprykin stunned the 18,209 in attendance when he wheeled and fired a harmless looking shot from a sharp angle that caught Turco's stick and ricocheted into the Dallas net at 1:35 of the second.

For Saprykin, it was a redemption of sorts, the enigmatic Calgary winger benched in Colorado but coming back with a physical, involved performance in Dallas.

Kobasew grabbed a loose puck behind the Dallas net and performed a classic wrap-around, catching Turco napping at 6:19, sending the high-priced Dallas starter to the showers with Ron Tugnutt pitching a shutout the rest of the way.

Calgary seemed to be in control from that point, grinding the clock down on a disinterested Dallas side until Leopold took his needless holding penalty at 9:05 of the third.

Guerin batted in a loose puck at the side of the crease on the ensuing power play at 9:28 and you could see the Flames visibly sag while the Stars gained a second wind.

Arnott then fed a streaking Guerin coming down the off wing who wristed a bullet past Sabourin on the inside post at 11:35 to tie the game.

Dallas outshot the Flames 28-17, the first time in four games the Flames had surrendered more than 20 shots.

Next up is Columbus Saturday night at the Saddledome.







1 Bill Guerin - Killed the Flames, pure and simple, with a hat trick and the only Star with a pulse until midway through the third. 

2 Jason Arnott - a goal and two assists for the ex-Oiler. 

3 Jarome Iginla - a goal, a fight and physically involved all night.

Richard Matvichuk had his head down at the Flames blueline, the puck in his feet as he vainly tried to keep the play onside when . . . . the freight train arrived in town, Craig Conroy bowling the big Dallas defender over midway through the second period.

Brendan Morrow directed a fairly harmless looking dribbler that caught Sabourin leaning away from the post, popping off his stick and bouncing on the goal line where Robyn Regehr whacked it out of the danger area.

Calgary has the NHL's fifth ranked powerplay, a significant improvement over the 29th ranked unit from last season. . . . . . Toni Lydman led the Flames in ice time at 25:13. Iginla led the forward group in ice time with 20:38. . . . . . Sergei Zubov had 28:45 in ice time. . . . . Flames were 52% in the faceoff circle, a number that deteriorated as the evening wore on, Calgary with a 65% advantage at one point. Stephane Yelle was 58% for the Flames while Arnott was 60% for the Stars. . . . . Calgary remains the only team in the NHL without a goal from a defenceman. "We just can't get caught up ice. If we get caught up ice, we'll hear about it," said Leopold before the game on coach Sutter's philosophy on defencemen jumping into the play in an effort to generate more offence from the back line. . . . . . . Flames Al MacNeil calls this edition of the Flames "the best one we've had in here in four or five years." . . . . . .


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