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Dramatic Flames Finish Caps Another Inconsistent Contest, But They Find Way To Win

Tyler Toffoli scored with 4.7 second left on the clock to give the Calgary Flames a win for the first time in six games as they fight to stay alive in the playoff hunt with a victory over the Dallas Stars.



It’s probably a bit challenging being a Calgary Flames fan right now. 

On one hand, you want to be excited about winning. Especially when it’s in dramatic fashion like Monday’s 5-4 victory over the Dallas Stars with less than five seconds remaining in regulation. 

At the same time, there’s the whole Connor Bedard lottery that they’re just as close to as the playoff picture. 

Whichever side you land on, buckle up for a wild finish. 

As far as the players are concerned, the Tyler Toffoli breakaway snipe in an offensive outburst that snapped a five-game losing skid was the start of a winning streak. 

In their minds, they have to believe they can replicate the outcome over and over and ultimately make the playoffs. Forget the fact they haven’t strung together a pair of wins in weeks, or a three-game streak in months. 

On so many nights, they’ve found ways to lose. And it looked like that may happen again after giving up a pair of two-goal leads in the second and third periods. But this time, they found a way to win. 

“We just stuck with it and obviously we found a way to stick together and get the win,” Toffoli, who roofed his 26th goal of the season glove side after collecting a long pass from Jonathan Huberdeau and racing in alone on Stars goaltender Jake Oettinger, told Flames TV

“I took a peek (at the clock) at the redline, saw that I had enough to do whatever I wanted. Obviously made the right choice.”

The winner came after a huge penalty kill with newcomer Nick Ritchie in the box for boarding with just under three minutes remaining and the Stars riding a wave of momentum following goals from Roope Hintz and Jamie Benn to erase a 4-2 deficit. 

It was the second time the Stars did that on the night. Ritchie and defenceman Nikita Zadorov both scored in the first five minutes of the first and second periods to give the Calgary Flames a 2-0 advantage. Jason Robertson and Max Domi tied things up before Elias Lindholm put the Flames up again. Rasmus Andersson made it 4-2 with another period-opening goal in the first five minutes. 

“We always have to make it a tight game towards the end,” Lindholm said with a bit of a grin. “But it’s nice to find a way and get some bounces towards the end — hasn’t been a lot of them this year.”

The winner came on a nice play that started with a nice bodycheck on the boards to gain puck control. Calgary Flames defenceman MacKenzie Weegar helped turn Ty Dellandria’s pass into an errant one, picked up by Huberdeau and quickly shuttled up to Toffoli, who took advantage of a line change and split to Stars to open ice. 

Then came the big finish. 

“Toff was pretty shifty there when he came out, and looked pretty quick,” said Lindholm. 

“He’s a goal-scorer, for sure. Obviously, it was a nice shot. I was pretty confident.”

If only they could say that more often this season. 

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