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Calgary Flames Game Day 81: A clash with the Canucks (8pm MT)

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Photo credit:Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Ryan Pike
1 month ago
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For the final time this season, the Calgary Flames (37-38-5, 79 points) are headed on the road. They’re headed to the coast to face the Vancouver Canucks (49-22-9, 107 points), a really good hockey team with a chance to clinch the Pacific Division. And the Flames have a chance to test themselves against a strong opponent and potentially play spoiler.
The broadcast begins at 8 p.m. MT on Sportsnet West and Sportsnet 960 The Fan. The Flames opened as +150 underdogs against the Canucks on Betway.
For a look from the other side, head over to Canucks Army!

The Flames

Projected lines via Daily Faceoff:
Mangiapane – Backlund – Sharangovich
Kuzmenko – Kadri – Pospisil
Huberdeau – Zary – Hunt
Coronato – Rooney – Klapka
Weegar – Miromanov
Kylington – Andersson
Solovyov – Pachal
We’re projecting Jacob Markstrom to start in net, backed up by Dustin Wolf. Blake Coleman isn’t expected to play. Per Sportsnet’s Eric Francis, Ilya Solovyov and Adam Klapka rotate in and Nikita Okhotiuk and Walker Duehr rotate out. The other extra Flames skaters are Dennis Gilbert, Joel Hanley and A.J. Greer.
In 18 games since the trade deadline, the Flames are 6-12-0. They’ve won three of their last four games – with wins over San Jose, Anaheim and Arizona – and they’ve managed to be pretty competitive despite losing a big chunk of their roster. A lot of the credit has to go to their power play. It was ranked 30th (14.4%) as of the trade deadline, but since then it’s third in the NHL, converting at 30.9% of its advantages.
Keep an eye on MacKenzie Weegar, who needs a goal to reach 20 goals and an even strength goal to set a single-season Flames franchise record for blueliners.

The Canucks

Projected lines courtesy Daily Faceoff:
Mikheyev – Pettersson – Hoglander
Suter – Miller – Boeser
Joshua – Lindholm – Garland
Podkolzin – Blueger – Lafferty
Hughes – Hronek
Soucy – Myers
Zadorov – Cole
We’re projecting Thatcher Demko to start in goal, backed up by Casey DeSmith. The expected extras are Mark Friedman, Noah Juulsen, Phillip di Guiseppe and Nils Aman.
The Canucks are 8-5-2 since the trade deadline, though all but one of those games were played without Demko. But he’s back, right as the team prepares for the playoffs. The Canucks can clinch the Pacific Division crown with a win. They can also reach 50 wins in a season for just third time in their franchise’s history.
The Canucks are a good hockey team, but they’re also a group that the Flames seem to find a way to elevate their game against. We’ll see if they can do so this time.
Flames Game Day content is presented by Betway!

Unavailable players

The Flames are without Dillon Dube, Dan Vladar and Blake Coleman.
The Canucks are without Tucker Poolman.

The numbers

FlamesCanucks
37Wins49
79 (.494)Points (%)107 (.669)
50.4%
(17th)
xGF%52.1%
(8th)
18.1%
(24th)
PP%22.7%
(11th)
80.9%
(11th)
PK%78.6%
(20th)

Head to head

This is the fourth and final game between these teams this season. The Canucks have won two out of the first three match-ups.

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