They way the San Jose Sharks were swarming, eventually something had to give.
It was the Calgary Flames who looked like flailing fish in trying to hold the lead.
With about five minutes left in Friday’s 4-3 shootout loss to the Sharks, there was a mad scramble around the Flames net.
Defenceman Mark Giordano dove across the crease to get in front of a Patrick Marleau attempt, then the rebound trickled out to the slot.
Sharks blueliner Marc-Edouard Vlasic stepped into it, and Miikka Kiprusoff stuck the paddle down for the save.
The sequence will make the highlight reels, but it won’t make the Flames happy.
For a while, it looked like the one-goal lead would hold, but Ryane Clowe scored with 2:34 remaining and the Sharks took it to the skills competition.
The defensive shell couldn’t last forever.
“We let them take the game to us in the last 10 minutes,” said head coach Brent Sutter.
The Flames had the opportunity to put this one away.
Clowe took a double minor to end the second period but nothing happened with the extra man.
“We had urgency,” said Flames captain Jarome Iginla. “We knew the importance of it. We wanted to get one. We had a couple of chances and that could have been the difference.
“They had a couple powerplays right after that but we had a great PK.
“The biggest thing was the last five minutes and we weren’t able to hold that lead.
“They had a big push and we didn’t have a great third period. They beat us by one goal and took it to a shootout.”