MacKenzie Weegar had just played his most productive game as a Flame, yet his post-game assessment was even sharper than his three-point outing would suggest.
“It just comes down to one play, and we’ve got to start making that play,” he said following a(nother) crushing, 6-5 overtime loss to the Dallas Stars.
“I thought we had some good chances in overtime to win, but we came up short.
“We just have to find a way to make that play.
“What are we going to do, let it crush us?”
If overtime was settled by a coin flip, the Calgary Flames would be sitting in a playoff spot.
It’s not, so they’re not.
For the 15th time in 21 games decided after 60 minutes, the Calgary Flames found a way to squander an increasingly crucial second point.
A few minutes after Weegar’s defensive partner, Rasmus Andersson, hit the goalpost in overtime, Jason Robertson added insult to injury by banking a backhander in off the post the Flames had hit four times earlier.
“Another overtime loss – losing these points is crushing us,” said Blake Coleman on Sportsnet Fan 960, after the team’s 12th overtime loss in 16 tries.
“It’s been a theme.
“It’s killing us right now.
“Four or five posts… if one of those goes in it’s a different story, but that’s the way it’s been going.
“I thought we deserved better.”
Despite spotting the Stars a 2-0 lead two minutes in, and down 3-1 after one, the Flames battled back to take 4-3 and 5-4 leads the Stars responded quickly to.
Even in other cities overtime isn’t being kind to the Flames, as the Jets extended their lead on the Flames to four points with an extra frame win over Nashville, who are one back of Calgary.
Weegar kickstarted the Flames’ three-goal surge midway through the second period with a goal that won a lucky fan a trip to Vegas as part of Cowboys Niteclub’s Minute-to-Win-it contest.
The fan happened to be wearing Weegar’s jersey, which is a hell of a coincidence as he scored for the second game in a row after stopping a 30-game goal-less streak.
It seemed it would be his night alongside Andersson, as the two combined for two goals and six points before Andersson’s luck ran out in overtime.
“Especially the second period we felt good, were contributing, and that’s kind of our job,” said Andersson, whose goal midway through the third period put the Flames up 5-4, only to have Jani Hakanpaa respond two minutes later.
“We’ve got to keep doing that.
“Tough one though. Obviously we hit the post and had a couple looks.
“We haven’t scored the goal.
“It’s frustrating. We’ve lost 15 games in overtime.”
The two teams combined for 31 goals in their three-game series this season.
In their seven-game playoff series last spring they combined for 29.
“Crazy eh,” chuckled Darryl Sutter, who sat Milan Lucic and Jakob Pelletier in the press box.
“Got their money’s worth, that’s for sure.
“We had a lot of good opportunities. Disappointing we didn’t score though.
“There’s a difference in snipers for both teams, that’s clear.
“Fought back twice – take it.”
Not many options, really, as the team heads to LA and Anaheim for games Monday and Tuesday.
“Stay in the moment boys,” said Sutter when asked about his message to the troops, who have 12 games left to make up the deficit in the standings.
“Everybody is trying to push you away – stay there.
“Stay focused on the next one. That’s how you win in this league.”