Giant Johnny Canuck & the Flames

Game Preview #71

Not a game I have been looking forward to. Not going to lie. The Nucks have lived up to their early season hype and are the best team in the NHL. Give 'Johnny' Canuck his due, he did emerge to be the giant many expected. The fact they have held onto position and are posed to take the President’s trophy in the much tougher Western Conference goes all the more to the challenge facing the Flames.

The Flames will be looking to steal a much-needed point or two tonight and face the challenge without Brendan Morrison who has taken a knee injury that has him out for a month min.

 

The way I see this game is that the Canucks may show up energized to try and nudge the Flames out of the playoff race or may see the game as one where they can relax a bit and save energy for the playoffs. If the latter the Flames may be able to steal some key points. 

The Stat Rack

Flames

Rank

 

Rank

Canucks

18.1%

11th

PP%

1st  

24.2%

82.5%

15th

PK%

2nd

86.3%

2.26

16th

GA

1st

2.28

2.90

6th

GF

3rd  

3.20

48.3%

24th

FO%

1st  

55.3%

 

Number Crunch

The numbers tell the tale on the Canucks. A team that is in the top three in the entire NHL in all categories, if they doesn’t present significant challenge I don’t know what does.

 

Alive in the Last Five

Flames

Jarome Iginla - 3G 2A +1 in last 5 GP

Rene Bourque -  4G 1A -2 in last 5 GP

Curtis Glencross - 2G 3A even in last 5 GP

Canucks

Daniel Sedin - 3G 4A even in last 5 GP

Henrik Sedin - 1G 6A -1 in last 5 GP

 

Anticipated Roster (subject to change by game time)

The Flames

The Canucks

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tanguay

Moss

Iginla

D Sedin

H Sedin

Burrows

Glencross

Jokinen

Bourque

Raymond

Kesler

Samuelsson

Kostopoulos

Stajan

Jackman

Torres

Malhotra

Hansen

Bouma

Backlund

Hagman

Tambellini

Lapierre

Higgins

 

 

 

 

 

 

Regehr

Bouwmeester

 

Hamuis

Ehrhoff

 

Giordano

Sarich

 

Rome

Salo

 

Staios

Babchuk

 

Ballard

Tanev

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kiprusoff

Karlsson

 

Luongo

Schneider

 

 

This game is one where a couple first goals by the Flames can give them the win. A rested Kipper always gives them a chance to win but getting ahead early and a full game effort can give the Flames victory.

 

The thing I have noticed about the Canucks this year is that they almost mercilessly exploit another team’s lapses and rarely miss the chance when it happens. The Flames can not take a shift off if they hope to win. 

 

One on One

 

Jay Bouwmeester vs Daniel Sedin

 

It is a special game for Jay as he ties the Iron Man record for Defensemen at 495.  He has to keep his focus though because his ability to contain the Sedins will be key for the Flames. The consistent Pac-man minute eater for the Flames has been a very consistent defensive D man this year despite a lack of scoring. 

If anyone is up to the challenge of containing the speedy Sedins, it will be him.

 

The Magic 8-Ball

 

By all rational and objective predictive standards the Canucks are the favorite to win this game. So I am not even pulling the Magic 8-ball off the shelf. It would be a gigantic win for the Flames if they can pull it out of the fire. 

 

 

 

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