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Game 5-- Flames@Predators: A Predator Mascot Would Terrify Children

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Game Preview

The Opposition

Good evening and welcome to the 5th Calgary Flames game of the year. The Flames stand at a somewhat palatable 2-2. It's certainly not horrible, and it could be a lot better. Nashville on the other hand has been very very good this year. They're at 3-0-1 so far, with the OTL coming at the hands of the Washington Capitals. So yes, our Flames have yet to really be "good" and the enemy in Nashville has largely been only good. Still, the Flames are coming off a dominant win against Edmonton and the Predators their first loss of the season. Predators goaltender Pekka Rinne is making only his second start of the season after going down in the first game, so there's always the hope that he'll be rusty.

There's more good news too. Jarome Iginla has historically dominated the Predators to the tune of 50 points in 40 games played, while Pekka Rinne, a very good goaltender normally, is terrible in 3 career games against Calgary, posting a save percentage of .845. These are all very good signs.

Something that's not so much a good sign though is T.J. Brodie being sent back down to the minors. Sutter only knows why, since playing in the NHL hardly seemed to be hurting his development. And it's not like we have a surplus of better blueliners, with Steve Staios and Cory Sarich composing the 3rd pairing tonight. The really really terrible 3rd pairing. Expect to see them get minimal ice time. Or hope, rather.

Injuries seem to be slowing down for the good guys. Rene Bourque may be back sooner than thought after getting Matt Stajan back early (and to good results!). And if that Stajan-Iginla-Alex Tanguay line keeps it up, Jokinen will stay off, and hopefully eventually get displaced even lower by Bourque and possibly David Moss returning.

If there's a team that knows how the Flames feel in terms of injuries though, it's tonight's opponent. With two players just coming off of injury (Martin Erat and Rinne), and former Flame Matthew Lombardi being placed on the IR today, Nashville has had a time of it staying healthy. They also waived former Flame Jamie Lundmark today, in an apparent attempt to remove all signs of recent Calgary-ness from the roster before tonight.

Here's the expected lines and pairings:

Tanguay- Stajan- Iginla

Hagman- Jokinen- Morrison

Glencross-Backlund-Jackman

Conroy- Meyer- Sutter

(There is a slim chance Bourque dresses tonight, but don't bet on it)

Bouwmeester-Giordano

Regehr- White

Sarich- Staios

Kiprusoff

Enjoy the game folks- on a side note this is actually being written by Arik, it shows up as Hayley since she made the post and my writing is being put in as an "edit". You'll start to see some more stuff from me around here now that I'm an author. I'll see you in the comments- Go Flames!