The Flames played the Ducks to about even the last time the two teams clashed, but were out-done in by Perry-Getzlaf-McElhinney. Tonight, two of those elements will be absent, so Calgary's chances should be improved. Anaheim added some marginal depth in Jason Blake recently, but there's little chance he'll make up for the lack Ryan Getzlaf.
Other stuff to watch for:
- With Dawes and Moss back in the line-up, the Flames should be 4 lines strong. The Ducks, on the other hand, are one of the top heaviest teams in the Western Conference, which is why they are still battling for a play-off spot despite some very nice guns and a good season from Jonas Hiller. If the big boys can play Perry to at least even this time, the depth guys should have a good chance to do some damage.
- Speaking off Moss, his year has been fairly disappointing after his break-out season. My suspect the big guy was playing hurt for a majority of the time previously. Hopefully he's back to form after the long lay-off.
- I've been fairly critical of Iginla, even post-trade shake-up, but the captain has seen his shot rate increase since the likes of Stajan and Hagman were added. Since Dion left town, Iggy has averaged 4.3 shots/game - a sizable increase and one much more in line with his peak years. I still think he's playing on the periphery too much and relying on "stop - look - pass" plays too often, but at least he's getting more rubber on net.
- This is Calgary's last game before the trade deadline. It's unclear whether Sutter plans to declutter the forward ranks with a quantity for quality deal, but it's entirely possible a couple more guys are playing their last games as Flames. Especially if the team loses and falls out of the play-off picture.