A disappointing third period in Friday's game against the Detroit Red Wings led the Flames to add a couple new faces to their lineup before tonight's contest in Chicago, a team that they were unsurprisingly 0-2-1 against last season--including a devastating shootout loss in which the Blackhawks scored to tie the game in the dying seconds of the third period.
The Flames called up defenceman Chad Billins and goalie Reto Berra from the Abbotsford Heat this weekend, and assigned goalie Joey MacDonald to Abbotsford today. Berra's play during training camp clearly impressed Flames brass, as he was one of the last cuts prior to the start of the season and Bob Hartley spoke multiple times about how difficult it was to make a decision between MacDonald and Berra regarding who would stay up with the club and who would be sent down. Berra is 4-3-1 in eight games with the Heat so far this season and has a SV% of .908. Not stellar numbers to be sure, but since neither Karri Ramo nor MacDonald exactly have dazzling stat lines either, the Flames have virtually nothing to lose by giving him a chance.
Anyway, Berra will start his first NHL game tonight against the Blackhawks, a daunting task for the 26-year-old rookie netminder. It doesn't look like Billins will play tonight, however.
Here are your projected lines and pairings:
Not sure what warrants Bouma being a healthy scratch, but whatever.