The Calgary Flames have one victory to show for their first five games of the season. They’re starting a tough two game road trip early this week that takes them through Chicago and St. Louis, traditionally buildings that are tough to gain wins in if you’re a road team. The Flames have had flashes of good play here and there for the first few games (and haven’t been blown out), but they haven’t been able to string together a full game of good habits and efforts.
At Sunday’s practice, I was seeking some optimism. I asked around with a simple premise: what things are going right and giving the team some confidence that they can turn things around?
I think for us the effort is there. There’s no quit. Obviously in the third period we were down a lot of goals and we were probably out played most of the game there, but the biggest thing is we stuck together and we had the effort there at the end and we pushed a little bit. We came back, and I think that’s something we can take out of last game. And even just building off Vancouver, it was our best game of the year. We have to learn from yesterday and all of our losses and the way we’ve been playing, which hasn’t been very well. I think there’s a bunch of different things.
There hasn’t been just bad things. There’s been times in games we’ve been playing well. I thought yesterday in the second period, we had good success when we scored those two goals. And we had zone time and played well, and then we had that turnover that’s been killing us and they scored. When we get zone time and play our game, clean breakouts and play within our structure I think we play well. It’s just the turnovers that kills us.
The positives? I love the dressing room. We have a character group of guys. They want it in there. They want it. They care. They really care. I’ve been around as many locker rooms since I was 15 years old til I was 45 and every year, and I’ve been around team after team after team. That’s as good a group as there is that I’ve come across, in people and character, and you win with character. For me, that’s a positive. They’re really squeezing to try to find some wins, because they want it. We’re just going to try to do a couple things to make sure our focus is in the right place and we’re not over-trying.