The second to last game of this mercifully short season for the Flames will be played tonight at the Scotttrade Centre in St. Louis (which, according to wi, is an awesome place to watch a hockey game).
The game itself is mostly meaningless aside from playoff positioning – but let’s be real, here: Chicago, Los Angeles and Vancouver are all making it out of the first round. Unless St. Louis loses its way to the 7 seed, they’re done in the first.
The Flames will take on Jay Bouwmeester and the St. Louis Blues, who clinched a playoff spot a couple of nights ago, leading to this reaction from Jbo:
It’s good, I guess.
What a guy.
- Mike Cammalleri – Matt Stajan – Lee Stempniak
- Sven Baertschi – Mikael Backlund – Jiri Hudler
- Paul Byron – Roman Horak – Roman Cervenka
- Max Reinhart – Blair Jones – Tim Jackman
- Mark Giordano – Dennis Wideman
- TJ Brodie – Mark Cundari
- Chris Butler – Anton Babchuk
- Joey MacDonald
Chris Butler will be playing for the US in the upcoming World Championships – which is hilarious because he is awful. This leads me to the conclusion the US team is awful, which can’t be too far off since Butler is a member of it. Baertschi will be playing for the Swiss and Hudler will suit up for the Czechs.
MacDonald gets the start in net tonight, which is kinda sad because a. Kipper has one game left in his career and should be starting b. we’re missing a glorious chance to see Leland Irving get lit up one last time for old time’s sake.
Bancks, Hanowski, Aliu, Street and Carson will be in the press box tonight, which seems like the right call: none of these guys are NHLers and barring a major step forward will likely spend the rest of their career in the minors as tweeners.
- Jaden Schwartz – David Backes – Alexander Steen
- Andy McDonald – Vladimir Sobotka – Chris Stewart
- David Perron – Patrik Berglund – Vladimir Tarasenko
- Adam Cracknell – Chris Porter – Ryan Reaves
- Jay Bouwmeester – Alex Pietrangelo
- Jordan Leopold – Kevin Shattenkirk
- Kris Russell – Roman Polak
- Brian Elliott
Bouwmeester has a goal and 5 assists in 12 games since being traded to the Blues. He won’t keep up that pace forever, but scoring like that while playing against the toughest the league has to offer (again) is impressive as hell.
TJ Oshie is done for the rest of the season due to an ankle injury. I always like watching Oshie play: there’s not one thing he’s amazing at, but he’s very good at everything. Special player.
Brian Elliott has managed to salvage his season, as he’s improved his EVSV% to above replacement level (.916). Both of the Blues’ other goaltenders are at .911 EVSV%, so it’s probably best to roll with Elliott for now. I don’t think Elliott is the best of the three, but it’s a lot closer than most people think.
Possible Playoff Clinchers
West: Minnesota (CBJ loss in regulation) and Detroit (getting one more point than CBJ does tonight).
East: Ottawa (getting one more point than WPG does tonight) and New York (getting one more point than WPG does tonight).
Draft Pick Watch
NJ, BUF, PHI, CAR, EDM, NSH, TB, COL and FLA are all in the draft pick hunt along with the Flames. The first 4 are ahead of the Flames and the last 5 are behind them. If the Flames lose in regulation tonight, the best they can finish is 24th.
Sum It Up
Watch the game, drink some beer, don’t worry too much about the results. Game starts at 6 PM on SNET.