Calgary Flames Game Day 46: The reigning Stanley Cup champions visit (7:30pm MT, SNW/SN1/960)

Photo credit:Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Ryan Pike
1 year ago
Be sure to check out NHL betting site Betway for the latest Flames game day odds!
After five games away from home, the Calgary Flames (21-15-9, 51 points) begin an important four game homestand on Wednesday evening. And they’re starting with a big test in the form of the Colorado Avalanche (22-17-3, 47 points), the reigning Stanley Cup champions. Can the Flames bounce back from a loss in Nashville? Can the Avalanche reel the Flames closer within the playoff chase? Let’s find out!
The broadcast begins at 7:30 p.m. MT on Sportsnet West and One and Sportsnet 960 The Fan!

The Flames

Projected lines courtesy Daily Faceoff:
Dube – Lindholm – Toffoli
Lucic – Kadri – Huberdeau
Mangiapane – Backlund – Coleman
Lewis – Ruzicka – Duehr
Hanifin – Andersson
Weegar – Tanev
Zadorov – Stone
We’re projecting Jacob Markstrom to start for the Flames, backed up by Dan Vladar. The projected extras are Connor Mackey and Jakob Pelletier.
The Flames are back home after spending 10 days in the United States. They captured six of a possible 10 points, which is good. A .600 pace gets them into the playoffs probably. But the key thing for the Flames right now is consistency. They need to keep playing a smart, structured game and if they have to lose, they need to (a) get points or (b) avoid losing consecutive games. We don’t want to call the 46th game of the season a must-win, but life gets easier for the Flames if they can put some daylight between themselves and the teams behind them in the playoff chase.
The Flames, as a group, were solid but lacked flair in Nashville. They looked at times like a team that had been away from home for awhile and lacked that extra gear to their game. They’re back at home, they have last change, and they’re playing a group that’s missing some key players. Wednesday’s game is a strong litmus test for where the group is as a team.

The Avalanche

Projected lines courtesy Daily Faceoff:
Lehkonen – MacKinnon – Rodrigues
Nichushkin – Compher – Rantanen
Cogliano – Newhook – O’Connor
Blidh – Meyers – rotating
Girard – Englund
Toews – Johnson
MacDermid – Hunt
We’re projecting Alexandar Georgiev to start, backed up by Pavel Francouz. Per reports from morning skate, no Cale Makar for the Avalanche. (Colorado is going 11 forwards, 7 defencemen.)
On one hand, the Avalanche are missing a bunch of important players. They’re without Gabriel Landeskog. They’re without Bowen Byram. They’re without Josh Manson. But despite these missing pieces, they’re still chugging along and are within a stone’s throw of a playoff spot. At some point, they’re going to get healthy. And despite missing these bodies, they’re a tough out because of how good their remaining high-end players are and because of how functional their depth pieces are.
The Avalanche are the defending champs for a reason: they’re talented, they’re consistent, and they’re a tough night at the office for whoever plays them.

Unavailable players

The Flames are without Oliver Kylington and Brett Ritchie.
The Avalanche are without Gabriel Landeskog, Denis Malgin, Josh Manson, Bowen Byram and Darren Helm.

The numbers

51 (.567)Points (%)47 (.560)

Head to head

This is the second of three games between these teams this season. The Flames beat Colorado back in October.

Social life

Here are your recommended follows from Avalanche Twitter:

Check out these posts...