Flames are bunch of middling men

Bob Hartley feels the effort has been there from his team this year. So what else do they need?...

Bob Hartley feels the effort has been there from his team this year. So what else do they need? Photo by Stuart Dryden, Calgary Sun

WES GILBERTSON, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:05 AM ET

CALGARY - Head coach Bob Hartley has made the same statement after several setbacks.

“I can’t fault the effort.”

OK, give the Calgary Flames an ‘A’ for effort then.

But what about the other categories on the report card?

If Hartley can’t ask for increased work ethic from his cellar-dwelling squad, what does he need to get the job done?

More skill?

More grit?

More saves from his goalies?

Maybe all of the above?

Hartley was sticking to the same refrain after Monday’s 3-1 loss to the Los Angeles Kings, a sixth consecutive road defeat that leaves the Flames (9-11-4) at the south end of the NHL’s Western Conference standings.

“You can’t fault the effort — I think the effort is there,” Hartley said. “It’s a couple of reads. You look at their first goal — (Dustin) Brown gets the puck by himself beside the net. We all know who is supposed to cover that area."


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