Gelinas accepts his fate

ERIC FRANCIS -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 2:42 PM ET


 TAMPA -- Now that the Calgary Flames have officially fallen one goal short of winning the Stanley Cup, the obvious question Martin Gelinas faced last night revolved around his apparent game-winner in Game 6.

 Known as The Goal No One Saw, Gelinas redirected a pass into the pad of Nikolai Khabibulin late in a 2-2 tie Saturday night. No one suspected it had crossed the line until an ABC camera angle showed it should have been ruled a goal, sparking a controversy the players were unaware of until after the game.

 "There are a lot of calls you can look back at and say if, if, if," said Gelinas quietly, following last night's 2-1 loss in Game 7.

 "But it didn't happen."

 He didn't want to say any more on something that has long been a moot point.

 Tying an NHL record by scoring the series-clinching goal in each of the first three series this spring, Gelinas, and the rest of the forwards, were unable to find a way past a stifling Lightning defence last night that limited Gelinas to one shot and the Flames to just 17.

 "You work hard for two months and grow as a team and to come up short is hard," he said.

 "All this work seems to be for nothing but let's not forget I'm proud of everyone in this room. Obviously we had a lot of injuries -- Robyn Regehr, Stephane Yelle, the list goes on. That's why this team was special. They were so resilient and kept going on. I've learned a lot about how far guys can push themselves."

 Asked what was said in the half-hour closed-door meeting with the owners after the game, Gelinas shrugged.

 "Nothing had to be said," whispered Gelinas.

 "Just look at the faces and the disappointment in everybody. Obviously, we're disappointed."


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