After starting 2011 off on a high note with a win against the Oilers on Saturday, the Flames look to keep things going tonight against the visiting Islanders (7PM MT, Sportsnet West), a team that despite sharing the misfortune of residing in the basement of their conference, has also been on the upswing recently.
An example of this comes in the form of what must be one of the more bizarre stat lines this season: the Islanders are winless in games when they've outshot their opposition, going 0-11-2 in 13 such games. The Minnesota Wild are the only other team that has failed to record a 'W' when they've gotten the better of their opponents in that category, with the two teams combining for 29 wins in games where they were outshot.
The Isles do have the better of the Flames in the special teams department; the New Yorkers have their hosts beat on both the penalty kill and the powerplay, operating within the league's top half in both categories on the road. The Flames have remained surprisingly disciplined over the course of this winning streak and their PK unit wasn't overly tested on Saturday in Edmonton, but that could change against an Islanders team that seems to have things going their way at the moment.
With yesterday's news that Mikael Backlund and Brendan Mikkelson have been sent down to the Abbotsford Heat, the Flames' lineup should remain unchanged for tonight's contest--after all, why mess with a winning combination?--which means that the only change for the Flames will be between the pipes, as Henrik Karlsson starts tonight in place of Miikka Kiprusoff.
Lines and Pairings:
Enjoy the game everyone--that is, if you can spare a moment away from watching future Flame Sean Couturier in action. Go Flames.