After wins by Phoenix and Dallas last night pushed the Flames (34-24-9) into seventh place in the West, they will attempt to climb back into a tie for fifth tonight and hold off the chasing Nashville Predators (33-23-9) tonight at the 'Dome. The Preds recently fell out of playoff contention with a record of just 4-4-2 in their past ten games. Still struggling with injury issues with four regular forwards and one defencemen out of the lineup, Nashville has scored just twenty goals in those games and was shutout twice during that time span, but has points in each of their past three contests, allowing just three regulation goals against in the process.
After shutting out the Canucks in a statement game on March 3rd, the Preds will be well-rested and looking to knock the Flames down a peg after a hard-fought win over the Blue Jackets on Friday night. If both Nashville and Anaheim win tonight, Calgary could be on the outside looking in by the end of the evening.
The Flames will be looking to deliver a much stronger performance on home ice tonight after clinging on to a two-goal third period lead for dear life on Friday and narrowly escaping with the 'W' against a Columbus team that probably should not have given them that much trouble. Mikael Backlund will return to the lineup after missing the team's last game with the flu while Brett Carson will be a healthy scratch after seeing minimal ice time in his debut with the Flames. The home team has recent history on their side tonight, as they've won all three previous games against the Predators this season by a combined score of 7-3 and could sweep the season series with the two points tonight.
Enjoy the game everyone and hope that Miikka Kiprusoff can maintain his sparkling stat line against the Preds (0.96 GAA and a .965 SV%) in his 20th consecutive start tonight. Go Flames.