The corners of Domenic Mobilio's mouth twitched toward a smile when he was asked about his prospects of becoming the Blast's all-time leader in game-winning goals when the Blast plays the Cleveland Crunch tonight.
Mobilio is tied at 19 with Stan Stamenkovic and Dave MacWilliams.
"Last week in St. Louis, a lady came up to me before the game and pointed out I was having a hard time tying Stan and Davey's record," said Mobilio, who had been within one goal of the No. 1 spot for more than three weeks.
"That night, I had the game-winner to tie those guys. Now, you're asking me about setting the record. Maybe this will have the same effect."
If he doesn't break the record at the Baltimore Arena in tonight's 8:05 game, he'll get his next chance tomorrow when the San Diego Sockers are here for a 2:05 p.m. game.
Stamenkovic and MacWilliams were veterans when they came to the Blast. But Mobilio arrived four years ago as an 18-year-old rookie.
During those four years, Mobilio has set other records. He is the only Blast player to record back-to-back 40-goal seasons. His eight hat tricks tie him with Mike Stankovic and Joe Fink for the lead in that category. His 22 power-play goals are three shy of MacWilliams' team record 25. And his 244 points place him fourth on that all-time list.
Blast coach Kenny Cooper says he is "right where he should be at this point in his career." But when Mobilio is asked about the significance of it all, he sees it primarily in terms of the Blast's success.
"It's always a big deal when you pass a record Stan Stamenkovic set," Mobilio said. "But this weekend is probably the biggest weekend of our season, not because of me, but because of what we can accomplish. Cleveland is right where we are, fighting for fourth place. We're 15-17; they're 14-17. If we can beat them, it'll be like winning two games. It will put some space between us.
"San Diego being here on Saturday is another opportunity. We haveto win these two games. And I think we can win them. It's simply an attitude thing. We've done well against Cleveland, but we can't overlook them. As for the Sockers, they're just another team."
So far this season, the Blast is 3-2 against the Crunch and 1-4 against San Diego, which has won seven titles in nine years. Mobilio has had a game-winning goal against each team.
Mobilio is aware that with just eight games left in the regular season and four teams within a game of each other in the battle for the playoffs, every game matters.
"I like it," said Mobilio. "It's more like baseball. Now every game means something, because only the top teams make it. Now it's all or nothing."
Game-winning goals.. .. .. Games played
Domenic Mobilio.. 19.. .. .. .. .. .173
Stan Stamenkovic..19.. .. .. .. .. .179
Dave MacWilliams..19.. .. .. .. .. .162