Flames get point on Pond

STEVE MACFARLANE, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 9:04 AM ET

ANAHEIM — The weather is inviting.

The arena is anything but — at least for the Flames.

And Corey Perry was the perfect host in the eyes of the Anaheim Ducks as they came away with a 3-2 shootout victory over the Calgary Flames.

Extending his point streak to 15 games to move within two of teammate Teemu Selanne's franchise record, Perry was more than just an offensive threat. He killed penalties with vigor, made Miikka Kiprusoff's life miserable when he could, and generally inspired the Ducks as they continued their dominance over the Flames in SoCal.

Twice he landed on top of the Flames netminder — neither his fault as his legs were first taken out by Kiprusoff and later Perry was shoved right on top of the angry Finn by Olli Jokinen.

Cruelty is common at the Pond. Although its name has changed through the years, the rink's hostility toward the Flames hasn't.

Bad things happen here.

Even Jarome Iginla's last-minute goal that sent the match to extra time and earn the Flames a critical point couldn't take the sting out of the string of bad luck.

Winless in nine straight games in Anaheim heading into last night's contest, the Flames' last victory in 2004 ended a previous nine-game stretch without coming away with two points in Anaheim.

Despite outshooting and creating more scoring chances than the Ducks, the Flames couldn't even come away with the lead after 20 minutes.

Striking 13:44 into the first period after scooping up Jokinen's long offering by jetting past a stunned Nick Boynton — who was bent over trying to bat down the puck when the body flew around him -- was Curtis Glencross.

His patented top-shelf wrister got the best of Ducks goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere and staked the Flames to a 1-0 lead.

That was all they'd get before the Orange County Curse seemed to come into play.

Stuck deep in his own end battling the overwhelming Ducks trio of Ryan Getzlaf, Perry and Bobby Ryan, Flames winger Jamie Lundmark looked possessed as he blindly sent the puck right in front of his own net to set Perry up for a one-timer.

Kiprusoff made the save, but Ryan quickly shovelled the rebound into the empty net.

Just 68 seconds later, the Ducks took the lead when Getzlaf stabbed the rebound from Ryan Whitney's blast from the point under Kiprusoff with Jokinen looking guilty as he got to the former Calgary Hitmen star long after the damage was done.

Glencross was the most dangerous Flame. He snuck behind the Ducks defence on a few occasions, only to be stoned by Giguere, who was at his best in the third period as the Flames peppered him from all angles as they did their best to eke out another win on the road and end the string of winless games on this ice.

They finally got to him.

In the end, it made no difference. The curse continues.

steve.macfarlane@sunmedia.ca


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