SUN Hockey Pool

Goal drought part of game

STEVE MACFARLANE -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 11:40 AM ET

SAN JOSE -- Tony Amonte is the first to admit things haven't been going his way lately.

The Calgary Flames' free-agent addition got off to a great start with five points over the first four games, although the team won just once in that span.

His numbers over the past eight games paint a different picture.

Amonte has a goal and two assists since his two-goal performance Oct. 10 in Denver against the Avs.

Last night in the 3-2 shootout loss to the San Jose Sharks, Amonte got stoned by goalie Nolan Schaefer on a penalty shot, botched a 2-on-1 with Jarome Iginla and failed to get the puck in the air during the shootout when he clearly had Schaefer beat.

"Everybody goes through it," said the veteran winger before the Flames' game in San Jose last night.

"You want to put the puck in the net and then you start pressing. The best thing you can do is just stay relaxed out there and let the game come to you. You start pressing, then your chances go away."

Some say Amonte may have been affected by the lockout layoff or that he's lost a step. Truth is, he shares his problem with most of the team's most relied upon scorers.

With the exception of their 3-2 loss in Phoenix, during which the Flames managed just 15 shots on goal --thanks mostly to an apparent addiction to the penalty box in the second period, the team has been getting its fair share of scoring chances.

Granted, not much has been going in.

"It's not for a lack of chances," said Amonte. "We're just not putting it in the back of the net right now."

Iginla has had a goal in each of his last two games but the only other Flames player to knock one in during those losses is defenceman Andrew Ference.

Amonte has been around long enough to know there's no reason to panic yet, though.

"If the chances aren't there, then you've really got to start to worry," said Amonte. "But the chances are there. We've had some golden opportunities. We've had some really nice chances. Jarome had the breakaway (Thursday with a chance to put us up 3-2). It's just the way it's been going."


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