The Kings Come to Iggy's Castle

Game #54--Flames vs. Kings - Feb 5, 2011 (8:00 pm MST, CBC) 


Pre-Game Summary 

 

The Flames are the hottest team in the NHL right now. Over the last ten games they have an 8-1-1 record.  The Kings struggled a bit in January with a 5-4-1 record, but have been getting back to form recently, going 4-0-1 in their last five games. Both teams are tied in points at 58 with the Kings holding a game in hand, and both teams are one point out of the final playoff spot in the West and have not lost in regulation in their past five contests. This is a big game for both teams, as someone’s run is going to end.

History didn't serve the Thrashers well in their last game against the Flames, and the Kings' last victory at the 'Dome was way back on December 31, 2005. This one is going to be the game to watch tonight in the NHL. 

Anticipated Game Type

 

Should be a chippy low scoring game with a 1 goal spread for the win (ignoring a potential EN). Both teams are strong in goal and on defence, with the edge going to the Flames' Kiprusoff in net and to the Kings on defence. The play between the two teams has been scrappy this season and the Refs have had the whistles out, but the stakes are high for both teams this time, so they may pull it back and show some extra discipline.

Expect a goaltending battle and close game with a lot of perimeter shots. Both teams will probably be looking for a deflection or greasy goal to beat the opposing goalie and the first goal will be key. The Flames will have a slight edge if the game goes to OT. They lead the league in shoot-out wins with seven, but the Kings are not slouches either, ranked 5th with five wins in the SO.

The Stat Rack

 

Flames

Rank

 

Rank

Kings

15.6%

24th

PP%

20th

17.4%

82.1%

16th

PK%

10th

83.3%

2.87

16th

GA

5th

2.40

2.72

16th

GF

17th

2.71

48%

25th

FO%

10th

51.1%

28

3rd

SA/G

2nd

27.5

30.5

16th

SF/G

22nd

29


Number Crunch

 

Flames fans should not hang on the stats too much for this game due to the current six-game winning streak. Their recent play has taken them from  ranking of 25th on the PK on  January 16th to 16th today; the PK is hot. In the same period, goals for has jumped from 16th from 21st. Stats that have held over the streak, relatively speaking are faceoff percentage, goals against (a modest improvement to 16th from 18th), and PP%,  which has only gone up to 24th overall from 25th.

 

One on One to Watch

Robyn Regehr vs. Ryan Smyth

These warhorses may be key in this particular game. Regehr’s ability to clear Smyth from the front of the net and give Kiprusoff a line of sight may be the most important factor for the Flames. Smyth often doesn’t score the goal or get factored into the stat sheets, but he plays a role.

 

Anticipated Rosters 

 

The Flames

The Kings

LW

C

RW


LW

RW

Tanguay

Morrison

Iginla

F

Loktinov

Kopitar

Brown

Bourque

Jokinen

Moss


Smyth

Stoll

Williams

Glencross

Stajan

Jackman


Ponikarovsky

Handzus

Simmonds

Kostopoulos

Backlund

Bouma


Clifford

Lewis

Richardson








Regehr

Bouwmeester


D

Mitchell

Doughty


Giordano

Sarich



Johnson

Scuderi


Pardy

Babchuk



Martinez

Green









Kiprusoff

Karlsson


G

Quick

Bernier









 

Who's most Alive in the Last Five ?


Flames

B. Morrison – 3G 2A +2 and 7 SOG

M. Giordano – 1G 3A +2 and 10 SOG

M. Kiprusoff – 5–O record / 9GA on 139 shots 0.935 SV%


Kings

D. Doughty – 3G 1A +1 (2PPG) and 10SOG.

J. Johnson – 1G 3A +/- 0 and 8 SOG.

J. Quick  4-1 over his last 5 starts with 1SO / 8GA on 132 shots  0.939 SV%. 

 

The Final Word from the Magic 8-ball

 

This one is too close to call and definitely should be in the top three games to watch tonight if not number one. Both teams are tied in the standings and fighting for the playoffs, so we should expect to see a great game.

Both teams are middle-of-the-road in goals scored so I see the team with the least defensive mistakes bringing in the 'W' if it is settled in regulation time.

In this game the Flames D has little margin for error. They must eliminate the screen in front of Kiprusoff as much as possible for the entire game. Don’t worry about high shot counts in this one, the Kings and Flames are second and third in shots allowed per game. Keep an eye on how successful either team is with the screen.

If it goes to OT, the Magic 8-ball gives the Flames a slight edge, that is if Stoll doesn’t score in the shoot-out.

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