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Photo Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

FGD 6: Coastal redemption (8pm MT, City/SN1)

It’s the first set of back-to-back games for the Calgary Flames this year, and the second game is coming at a good time. The Flames (3-2-0) were basically two different teams against Ottawa on Friday night: one that got a lot of offensive zone time in the first half of the game but couldn’t bury chances, and then one that was bad at a lot of aspects of the game of hockey. They’re probably mad at themselves, and they get a shot at redemption against Vancouver (1-1-1), a team they usually find some emotion while playing. With four days off after this, expect the Flames to drain the tank (so to speak) and battle harder than they have recently.

The puck drops just after 8 p.m. MT and it’s on Sportsnet 960 The Fan (radio) and City TV and Sportsnet One (moving picture box).

The Flames

Here are last night’s lines, courtesy of Daily Faceoff:

Gaudreau – Monahan (A) – Lazar
Tkachuk – Backlund – Frolik
Versteeg – Bennett – Jagr
Ferland – Stajan – Brouwer (A)

Giordano (C) – D.Hamilton
Brodie – Hamonic
Bartkowski – Stone

There’s no morning skate, so we’re left with guesswork for tonight’s lines and lineup. The 960 post-game show (hosted by Pat Steinberg) had a good point regarding tonight’s goaltender: the Flames have four days off and so the downside of going back to Mike Smith is a lot less than it would be otherwise. We saw Eddie Lack last night. He was fine. But if the idea is the Flames are going to have a bounce-back game, they might need to go back to their top guy and save Lack’s first start for another time.

Update: Yep, Smith starts.

Other updates from the Gulutzan availability: Freddie Hamilton comes in (but no word on who comes out, aside from it won’t be Jagr) and there will be no changes to the defensive group tonight.

Let’s just hope they can stay out of the box, because seven power plays handed a ton of momentum to the Senators and completely frittered away the positives the Flames gained from all that first period zone time.

Update from warm-up: Ferland and Stajan OUT, F.Hamilton and Glass IN.

The Canucks

Here are Vancouver’s projected lines via Daily Faceoff:

Sedin – A Different Sedin – Vanek
Baertschi – Horvat – Boeser
Granlund – Burmistrov – Eriksson
Gagner – Sutter – Dorsett

del Zotto – Gudbranson
Pouliot – Tanev
Hutton – Stecher

Jacob Markstrom is expected to start for the Canucks. He’s been arguably the best Canucks player so far this season. Jake Virtanen sits as Alexander Burmistrov slots in, and Derrick Pouliot comes in for the injured Alexander Edler.

The Canucks are an odd group, in that they’re in that weird “retooling on the fly” grey area that the Flames were in during the Jay Feaster years. They have a lot of good pieces, though, including Brock Boeser – who brutalized the Flames during the preseason.

Injury Report

Flames: Daniel Pribyl (knee) is on the injured reserve.

Vancouver: Alexander Edler (knee) and Brendan Gaunce (shoulder) are out.

When Last We Met

Wanna know why the Flames almost didn’t make the playoffs last year? Well, they lost three games to Vancouver, going 2-1-2 overall. Oddly enough, the Flames lost every single game they played in Vancouver: two of them in overtime.

The Numbers

CGY VAN
Wins 3 1
Points 6 3
Adjusted Corsi 51.1% 42.8%
Power Play 20.0% 12.5%
Penalty KIll 86.4% 90.9%

Know Thy Enemy

Check out these Canucks-related Twitter accounts. (Beware, though, they’ll probably tweet about the Canucks.)

Sum It Up

The Flames have a chance to bounce back from a poor outing last night when they take on arguably their most bitter rival. Hopefully they find some way to channel their emotions, as well as some way to play with better defensive zone structure.

  • Atomic Clown

    I know the flames have been called on penalties nonstop, but I will admit, (other than the Anaheim game), the refs have been pretty neutral about it. Im glad to see the Wideman effect is gone. The calls have been iffy, but theyve been iffy across the NHL (Anaheim for some reason gets away with more stuff than any other team)

  • Alberta Ice

    Glad I saw this game tonight. They did learn from their mistakes last night. 4-2 record. 27 shots against. (But what of all those penalties to kill in that first period- ugly?) So far the season start is better than expected. Keep it going Flames.

  • The Sultan

    The Flames got off to a good start this season. Sometimes you need to lose to learn your lessons and use that to get better. Could be possible Flames were more worried about the Canucks and were looking forward to this game and dismissed a Karlsson-less squad.

      • Atomic Clown

        Ottawa is playing like Anaheim pre-2010, or Blues under Hitchcock. They break any flow to the game, allow nothing plays to transition out, and once the other team is heaped in confusion and frustration, start peppering the goalie. Anaheim sludged out the neutral zone close to their blue line, and just went heavy under with Getzlaf and Perry. The Blues closed off the offensive blue line, and then give it to Oshie or Tarasenko to snipe. This is more boring to watch than the trap-devils

        • Oil consuming Flames

          The irony of the face-off violation penalty is that it’s a delay-of-game penalty. Nothing delays the game more than linesmen not dropping the puck, and their constant dismissing of players from the face-off dot.
          Just drop the damn puck.

  • aye

    A lot of firsts tonight, Gio, Dougie, Hamonic, with their 1st goals, Jagr, Freddie, Brouwer with 1st points. Thought Benny might’ve got a stick on the last goal, but oh well, things will eventually come for him, especially if GG continues to give him time with Tkachuk and JG.