CALGARY – A few days ago, Sean Monahan was on the ice and was a very close witness and participant of the Johnny & # 39; Gaudreau show – the man whom they call Johnny Hockey, won a hat-trick, and against the background of the Western conference – Winnipeg Jets leader – no less.
But on Saturday evening, Monahan, centerman of Calgary Flames, hit us with a slightly different reality.
"It's hockey," he said with simplicity, after losing 3-2 to the visiting Vancouver Canucks. "It's not easy to get points."
Well, it certainly was not in Calgary on Saturday – unless you counted when you were there for a short time. Yes, although the Flames have dominated the game, more precisely the beginning of the second period, when it seemed that Vancouver was short (there were not any of them!). Calgary could only light the lamp when the man was below.
How do you explain it?
"I do not know," said Monahan. "Of course, PK is doing a great job."
Well, the truth, and Calgary won the death penalty, it was the story of the game for these Flames. Returning to victory 4: 1 over Winnipeg, they managed to escape from Saturday with one point, but it was not a consolation. You really could not tell, through the simple faces in the locker room, that the Flames are now bound at the top of the Western Conference's classification, although the Jets have a game in their hands.
"Better than nothing," said David Rittich, the goalkeeper from a single point. "We should get two today, but better than nothing."
This is a ghost.
Vancouver's first goal hit one of its ordinary suspects when Brock Boeser wristed one of Rittich's power game. Flames replied shortly after that in the second, when Mark Jankowski scored his fourth short goal this season (leads the league) and the sixth in total. Provide bursts of flames from the jumbotron.
Flames thought that shortly thereafter, they did 2-1, and if not for the early whistle – they thought that the massive goalkeeper from Vancouver, Jacob Markstrom (six feet six), controlled the disc, but jumped out and Mikal Backlund drove him home and even He celebrated when Saddledome went to bananas. But the target was canceled because of an earlier whistle.
"Apparently they're the best in the world," said defender Flames Travis Hamonic. "You will not agree to all calls or a large part of them. This is something that you have to fight for – there are two teams who probably complain about what they say and things, so you will be on the good side with some phones and you will be on the wrong side, and this is the nature of the season and how it goes – but they certainly have a hard job and try their best. "
It was Hamonic that gave the Flames a real advantage, about half a second. He won two seconds in a Power Canucks game, leading a bizarre rush and finding it far in the corner. Then the DJ hit him with the beauty of MC Hammer, Can not Touch, because his teammates call Hammer. A nice touch. And, of course, more fire flames burned.
But the event lasted for a short time. Although Flames had a strong chance in the second, and then came – you probably guessed it – Elias Petterson, to spoil the party. Swedish fabrication rookie pushed his opponent and completely laser to the opposite angle. He hit the net and jumped out so fast that you wondered if it happened, but you know it because … Petterson.
Rittich called it a "pretty good shot", which is quite a good understatement.
And so, while Calgary scored a point after winning the Jets, after a tear of victory in early December, the end of the month was much less spectacular. Victory over Winnipeg caused a losing streak with three games.
The good news is that Flames have the chance to end 2018 on the winning note, with the New Year's Eve game planned at Saddledome against San Jose, and if you ask coach Bill Peters, they will call in 2019 the heels of a good performance.
"I think our start was very good," he said on Saturday. "… Today we traveled much better than we did in Winnipeg, and I expect we will come back much better on Monday."
If Flames does it, maybe hockey will not be so difficult and goals so difficult to get.