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Calgary Flames Game Day 70: Back home to host Buffalo (7pm MT)

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Photo credit:© Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports
Ryan Pike
3 months ago
Brought to you by odds site Betway
A day after a disappointing result in Vancouver, the Calgary Flames (33-31-5, 71 points) will aim to bounce back when they face a desperate Eastern Conference foe in the form of the Buffalo Sabres (33-33-5, 71 points). The Sabres are seven points back of Detroit for the final Eastern playoff spot and if they’re going to catch them, they need a lot of wins and a lot of help. Can the Flames play spoiler on a Sunday evening?
The broadcast begins at 7 p.m. MT on Sportsnet’s national feed and Sportsnet 960 The Fan. The Flames opened as -120 favourites against the Sabres on Betway.

The Flames

Projected lines via Daily Faceoff:
Mangiapane – Backlund – Coleman
Zary – Kadri – Pospisil
Huberdeau – Sharangovich – Kuzmenko
Greer – Rooney – Hunt
Kylington – Andersson
Weegar – Miromanov
Hanley – Pachal
We’re projecting Dustin Wolf to start in net, backed up by Jacob Markstrom. We’re anticipating that the healthy extras for this game are Matt Coronato, Walker Duehr, Dennis Gilbert and Nikita Okhotiuk. It’s the second half of a back-to-back set, so we won’t find out any clues about the lineup until warm-up.
This is the second half of the Flames’ seventh back-to-back set of the season. The Flames have struggled in this situation this season, going winless with a 0-5-1 record in second halves thus far this season. They’ll be facing a rested Sabres team that played on Thursday in Edmonton and has been waiting patiently for the Flames, so the secret to success might just be keeping things simple, rolling four lines and trying to limit mistakes.

The Sabres

Projected lines courtesy Daily Faceoff:
Peterka – Thompson – Tuch
Greenway – Cozens – Benson
Skinner – Krebs – Girgensons
Rousek – Jost – Olofsson
Dahlin – Byram
Power – Jokiharju
Bryson – Clifton
We’re projecting Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen to start in goal, backed up by Devon Levi. The anticipated extra skaters are Eric Robinson, Kale Clague and Eric Comrie. (Yes, Buffalo is carrying three goalies.)
This is the fifth and final game of an extended road trip for the Sabres. They’ve lost three of their first four games to kick off the trip, with their lone win coming against Seattle. The Sabres are a team that headed on this trip hoping to play their way into a playoff spot, but so far it’s gone the opposite direction for them. They absolutely, desperately need two points to stay alive in the East’s playoff chase.
Expect a frenzied effort from the road side on Sunday evening.
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Unavailable players

The Flames are without Dillon Dube and Dan Vladar.
The Sabres are without Mattias Johansson and Jack Quinn.

The numbers

FlamesSabres
33Wins33
71 (.514)Points (%)71 (.500)
50.2%
(18th)
xGF%48.9%
(22nd)
14.5%
(30th)
PP%16.3%
(14th)
83.2%
(5th)
PK%78.9%
(17th)

Head to head

This is the conclusion of their two game season series. The Flames won in Buffalo back in October.

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