Two straight wins followed by three straight losses and repeat has been the Calgary Flames’ theme for the month of March.
On Friday, the Flames were beaten 5-1 by the Columbus Blue Jackets. Columbus extended its streak to a team-best 12th straight game with a point.
Meanwhile, things aren’t going well in Calgary. The Flames’ 11-14-4 record – and 26 points – is identical to that of the Colorado Avalanche, as they duel to stay out of the bottom of the Western Conference standings.
The Flames’ veteran goalie Miikka Kiprusoff wasn’t happy with the loss to Columbus and seems to be doing a slow boil about continued struggles in his play and that of his teammates in front of him.
“It was a tough night,” Kiprusoff told the Calgary Sun.
“As a goalie, five goals is no excuses, but I think they did get quite many quality chances tonight. Pretty tough game.
“It’s not pointing fingers. We are a team here. Five goals, it’s a tough game.”
Kiprusoff, 36, has allowed five goals in each of his last two starts – both losses for the Flames.
That’s a combined 10 goals on 51 shots in two games. But the problems aren’t necessarily all on the goaltender.
“As a goalie, you’re always the last guy standing. But the chances we’re giving … we can blame the goalie if that’s our wish but I don’t blame Miikka one bit,” Flames coach Bob Hartley told the Calgary Herald.
“We don’t give him a chance and we’ve giving up point-blank chances. We’re in the NHL. Those guys know how to shoot pucks.’’