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Game 11 Preview: Canadiens visit Calgary

The Flames try to stay above .500 as they welcome the Eastern Conference leading Montreal Canadiens to the ScotiaBank Saddledome at 7PM tonight.

Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

The 5-4-1 Calgary Flames will host the 7-2-0 Montreal Canadiens tonight in Calgary, Alberta at 7PM MT. This is the first of two games this season for the two infrequent sparring partners, with a rematch set in Montreal for late Sunday afternoon. For the Flames, it's the fourth game of a five-game homestand. They started with a 2-1 overtime loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning last Tuesday, rebounded with a 5-0 destruction of the Carolina Hurricanes on Thursday, and lost to the Washington Capitals, 3-1 on Saturday. They'll finish up against the Nashville Predators on Halloween. The Habs will be in the second game of a three game Western Canada road trip. After playing the Edmonton Oilers last night, they'll finish it up with a date against the Vancouver Canucks on Thursday.

The Flames (then 21-28-7) and Canadiens (then 30-21-6) last played on February 4th last season, with Carey Price holding Calgary scoreless on 27-shots in a 2-0 victory. Rene Bourque (8) scored late in the second period with assists from Brandon Prust and Lars Eller. It was the only goal that now-departed Calgary goaltender Reto Berra allowed on 26 shots. David Desharnais (9) added a power play marker into an empty net with 11 seconds remaining, with helpers awarded to Max Pacioretty and PK Subban. * Box Score * Full Recap

The Flames, who had a five-game winning streak snapped, had now ex-Flame Mike Cammalleri talk to the media:

I thought there was a lot of pretty good speed on the back pressure from both teams and that made it hard to create on rushes and chances that you can dictate play with. We'd obviously like to do things better and make things challenging on their defense, but at the same time you've got to give credit to both clubs for a real hard backcheck tonight and taking time and space away.

You can find more about the Canadiens at Eyes On The Prize.

Calgary's last action would see them drop a 3-1 setback against the Washington Capitals on Saturday. Joel Ward scored twice, Dennis Wideman had a power play marker for Calgary, and Nicklas Backstrom added another one for the final score. Kris Russell and Jiri Hudler assisted on Wideman's fifth goal. Braden Holtby earned the win by turning aside 20-of-21 Flames' shots, while Karri Ramo got tagged with the loss, stopping 27-of-30. * Box Score * Full Recap

Calgary coach Bob Hartley addressed the room after the game:

I don't think that we gave ourselves a chance to win. It seems that we had the momentum of the game for just small parts of the game. Even though I don't think we had our best game, I think we still had some chances in the third to come back and make a game out of it. The effort was there, but our execution was not as good as I think it could have been. Unfortunately, you get some nights like this.

Japers' Rink has your Capitals.

GameTIme: 9PM MT

Where2Watch: RDS2, CITYM, SNF

All-Time Record: Only the Boston Bruins are better against the Flames. The Habs have a 36-55-16 record against the Flames, and have outscored Calgary by an average of a half goal per game.

Current Record

Calgary Flames: 5-4-1, 11 points, on pace for 90 points. Fourth in the Pacific Division, eighth in the Western Conference, 16th in the NHL. Last Five: L-W-O-W-L. Playoff odds: 55.9%

Montreal Canadiens: 7-1-0, 14 points, on pace for 144 points. First in the Atlantic Division, first in the Eastern Conference, first in the NHL. Last Five: L-W-W-W-W. Playoff odds: 77.4%

Milestones

Kris Russell earned his 100th assist and Dennis Wideman scored his 300th NHL point on Saturday night.

Birthdays

Longtime Flame center Joel Otto turns 53 tomorrow. He played 730 games over 11 seasons with the club, scoring 167 goals with 261 assists and 1642 penalty minutes. He also has 74 postseason points in 122 contests, and helped the Flames earn the 1989 Stanley Cup.

Elsewhere

The Flames and Habs will be facing off in one of 12 NHL contests tonight.

Minnesota Wild vs. Boston Bruins
Winnipeg Jets vs. New York Islanders
Los Angeles Kings vs. Philadelphia Flyers
New Jersey Devils vs. Pittsburgh Penguins
Ottawa Senators vs. Columbus Blue Jackets
Buffalo Sabres vs. Toronto Maple Leafs
Arizona Coyotes vs. Tampa Bay Lightning
Anaheim Ducks vs. Chicago Blackhawks
St. Louis Blues vs. Dallas Stars
San Jose Sharks vs. Colorado Avalanche
Carolina Hurricanes vs. Vancouver Canucks

Probable Starting Lineups

Calgary Flames

Line 1

Jiri Hudler

Sean Monahan

Joe Colborne

Line 2

Paul Byron

Mikael Backlund

Johnny Gaudreau

Line 3

Curtis Glencross

Matt Stajan

David Jones

Line 4

Brandon Bollig

Lance Bouma

Josh Jooris

Defensive Pair 1

Mark Giordano

TJ Brodie

Defensive Pair 2

Kris Russell

Dennis Wideman

Defensive Pair 3

Ladislav Smid

Deryk Engelland

Starting Goalie

Jonas Hiller

Reserve Goalie

Karri Ramo

Montreal Canadiens

Line 1

Max Pacioretty

David Desharnais

Brendan Gallagher

Line 2

Alex Galchenyuk

Tomas Plekanec

PA Parenteau

Line 3

Rene Bourque

Lars Eller

Dale Weise

Line 4

Travis Moen

Manny Malhotra

Brandon Prust

Defensive Pair 1

Alexei Emelin

PK Subban

Defensive Pair 2

Andrei Markov

Tom Gilbert

Defensive Pair 3

Nathan Beaulieu

Mike Weaver

Starting Goalie

Carey Price

Reserve Goalie

Dustin Tokarski

Flames Leaders

Average Time on Ice: Defensemen; TJ Brodie - 24:31, Mark Giordano - 23:44
Forwards; Mikael Backlund - 17:50, Mason Raymond - 17:28, Joe Colborne - 17:10

Goals: Dennis Wideman, Mason Raymond - 5, TJ Brodie - 3

Assists: Joe Colborne - 8, Mark Giordano, Kris Russell - 6

Points: Joe Colborne - 8, Mark Giordano, Jiri Hudler, TJ Brodie, Mason Raymond - 7

Penalty Minutes: Curtis Glencross, Brandon Bollig - 16, Deryk Engelland - 13

Shots-on-Goal: Sean Monahan - 25, Mason Raymond - 24, Mark Giordano - 20

Faceoffs: Sean Monahan (84-for-162) - 51.8%, Mikael Backlund (104-for-203) - 51.2%, Joe Colborne (66-for-132) - 50%

Hits: Brandon Bollig, Curtis Glencross - 25, Lance Bouma - 24

Blocked Shots: Kris Russell - 29, Mark Giordano - 22, TJ Brodie - 20

Check back here later for the game thread, our award winning post-game report, our morning after advanced stat breakdown, and all of your other Flames' news.