Monty passes respect

DAN TOTH -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 3:10 PM ET


 Defenceman Steve Montador wore the green hard hat last night but couldn't stop talking about his teammates, most notably Martin Gelinas.

 "I can't say enough about him," Montador smiled, donning the team's reward to the unsung hero after each win.

 "He's clutch.

 "He just goes to the net."

 Goes to the net and scores, that is.

 Gelinas potted the game-winner to eliminate Detroit while Montador earned hardest- working Flame honours and the gaudy headgear after toiling 26 minutes on the blueline, including powerplay and penalty-killing duties.

 "It was just a great hockey game and Gelly was on the doorstep again, so good for him and good for us," Montador said above the dressing-room din while media huddled around Gelinas next door.

 "They came hard at us but (goaltender) Miikka (Kiprusoff) was there for us and we came back hard too."

 Montador said with each playoff win, first in knocking off Vancouver in seven games before downing the Wings in six, the Flames have built confidence that they belong with the elite teams in the post season.

 After sending two of the best teams in the conference to the golf course, the rest of the league is believing too.

 "We just believe in ourselves, what we can do on the ice and play the basics, stick to our system and basics," explained Montador, on the ice for the game-winner while also posting four shots on goal.

 "We don't try to reinvent the wheel out there, we just stick to our style of hockey with our speed and it came through tonight.

 "Hard work is what we're all about. I just go to the net, pucks to the net ... it's a good feeling."


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