Michael Cammalleri’s goal with 23 seconds remaining in the game gave the Calgary Flames a 2-1 victory Saturday over the Kings at Staples Center, a game that turned on several pivotal moments. The Kings had their chances, but not enough of them to win the game, extend their points streak to 12 in a row or to please defenseman Drew Doughty. Here are his three things about Saturday’s loss.
1. Of the power play in general, Doughty said, “Our best players on the ice are always on the power play and those are opportunities we need to step up for our team, and we need to score goals. We haven’t been doing that. It’s about time we did. We need to move bodies. We need to get more shots. We need to get those screens and we need to get those rebounds. I can’t remember the last time we got a rebound goal. We need to be doing that. That’s how you score goals in the NHL. Goalies are too good these days. If you’re shooting the puck on them without a screen or a rebound, they’re going to save the puck. It’s shots and rebounds.”
2. Of the Kings’ inability to score against the Flames, especially early in the game, Doughty said, “We were getting through the neutral zone fairly easily. We were creating chances on the rush. We were getting in there. When we get in there, we need to be creating more chances by cycling the puck, by getting to the net, getting screens, getting shots. I think we had only maybe 10 shots in the first period (actually, the Kings outshot the Flames 7-5 in the first period and 22-20 for the game), and we should have had way more than that with the possession time we had. It gets us into trouble when we can’t score goals.”
3. Of the notion that the Kings might have taken the Flames lightly, Doughty said, “I don’t know. I don’t that that is a reason why we didn’t play well. Maybe it is. It’s all about preparation. When you’re going into a game against a team that’s down at the bottom of the standings, you can’t take them lightly. You need to relish that opportunity. You need to make it a must-win game. It’s the second time we’ve just let them stay around for the whole game. They didn’t outplay us and then they scored a late goal. It’s cost us twice. That’s valuable points we need because right now the standings are so tight. We need to be winning games.”