Streak needs to end

SCOTT FISHER -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 8:23 AM ET

Brett O'Malley must have broken a mirror.

Or walked under a row of ladders with black cats swarming around his feet.

The Calgary Hitmen right-winger has been cursed lately.

O'Malley hasn't registered a point in 17 games. He hasn't scored a goal in 19 straight, dating back to mid-February when he dented the twine in back-to-back games against Kamloops and Moose Jaw.

The overager has experienced slumps before. But nothing like this.

"Not this long," he grimaced. "This is definitely the longest I've gone.

"Things just aren't bouncing my way. But if you keep working hard, they'll come. I just need one to go off my skate or off my pants and go in.

"Then I'll get a little confidence and go from there."

The 5-ft. 11-in., 180-pounder said he'd like nothing better than to shed the monkey from his back.

But it's a distant secondary goal at this point of the season.

"It's a concern but we're still scoring," O'Malley said.

"If I don't get points and we're winning, I'm happy.

"If we won the Memorial Cup, I couldn't care less if I didn't have a single point.

"Obviously, everybody want to put up points but as long as we're winning, it's not a big deal."

The fleet-footed winger scored eight goals during the regular season, his lowest total since his rookie season.

Yet, no one seemed to notice, largely because of the other contributions he makes on a nightly basis.

Never one to take a night off, O'Malley brings grit and tenacity to the squad's second line.

And while the trio, which includes fellow overager Tyrel Lucas and the offensively gifted Konstantin Puskarev, is being counted on to provide secondary scoring, O'Malley's role is a littel different from those of his linemates.

"I don't feel a lot of pressure because Lucas and Pushkarev have lots of points," O'Malley said. "They're producing and I'm more of an ... antagonizer on that line.

"I get on the other team's defence and try to create turnovers and then hopefully those guys can work their magic."

Lucas said his winger has remained upbeat through the drought.

"He's doing his job, he's not being scored on," Lucas said. "He's playing solid defensively and that's going to help this team win.

"And he's not getting that powerplay time, where you get a lot of those points."

Hard work and consistency will be rewarded -- eventually.

"He might be thinking about it," Lucas said. "You tend to do that when you don't get any points for awhile. You start to grip the stick a little bit.

"But the only thing he can control is how hard he works so I think the points will come.

"It's just a matter of time before you come out of something like that."


Videos

Photos