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Game 14 Preview: Flames visit Capitals

The Flames look to extend their point streak to four against the underachieving Capitals, tonight at 5PM.

Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

Tonight at 5PM, the Flames swing by the Chinatown section of Washington DC to play the Capitals at Verizon Center. This is the second of two games between the two this season, with the first ending with a 3-1 Washington victory on October 25th. Calgary will be playing in the second game of a five game roadtrip. They started out with a 6-2 win over the Montreal Canadiens on Sunday, and will continue against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday, the Florida Panthers on Saturday, and the Carolina Hurricanes on Monday. As for the Caps, they’ll be finishing a quick two game homestand. They started it out by losing to the Arizona Coyotes, 6-5 on Sunday.

A deeper look into the last Caps/Flames matchup revealed a lot of weaknesses on Calgary’s part, although they have a three-game point streak (2-0-1) since that time. The Caps took it with two goals from Joel Ward and the finisher by Nicklas Backstrom in the third. Dennis Wideman earned the lone marker for the Flames, with assists from Kris Russell and Jiri Hudler. Braden Holtby earned the win with 20 stops on 21 tries, while Karri Ramo turned aside 27 shots in 30 for the loss. * Box Score * Full Recap

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. - Flames coach Bob Hartley

Japers' Rink has more on the Caps.

Calgary's last game would see some young guns flash some skill in a 6-2 road victory over the Montreal Canadiens. Josh Jooris scored twice, TJ Brodie had three assists, Mark Giordano and Curtis Glencross each had a goal and an assist, Johnny Gaudreau and Jiri Hudler earned two helpers per, Lance Bouma and Markus Granlund scored a goal each, and Sean Monahan and Dennis Wideman also each dished out one helper in the action. Jonas Hiller only faced 20 shots, making 18 stops for the win, while Carey Price was less than awesome, allowing five goals on 35 shots. * Box Score * Full Recap

I think we're all just doing the little things right and we're all doing our jobs, you know, making little plays, creating offensive chances and playing well in our defensive zone and helping [Hiller] back there. I had a ton of aunts and uncles and cousins here to come watch me play. They're from Vermont. It's only about an hour-and-a-half trip, so they're really happy for me. - Johnny Gaudreau, speaking about the game and his personal cheering section.

For more on the Canadiens, check out Eyes On The Prize.

In Washington's last contest, the Caps were set down 6-5 by the Arizona Coyotes. Alex Ovechkin scored a goal with three assists, Nicklas Backstrom added three more helpers, Tom Wilson scored once with an assist, and Joel Ward, John Carlson, and Troy Brouwer each also lit the lamp in the losing effort. Shane Doan scored twice, while Antoine Vermette, Sam Gagner, Tobias Rieder, and Michael Stone also earned goals for the Coyotes. Devan Dubnyk stopped 32-of-37 shots for the win, and Justin Peters earned a loss by allowing all six goals on 30 shots. * Box Score * Full Recap

[Their] behavior has to change or we have to change people. I mean it's plain and simple. Their ice time, look at different people in different situations. To me, it's absolutely unacceptable. They have to fix it. It's my job to fix the behavior. I don't like the behavior. If they're not going to fix it internally, individually, then I'll make sure I fix it. - Washington coach Barry Trotz.

Check out Five for Howling for second-to-none reporting on Arizona.

GameTime: 5PM MT

Where2Watch: SNW, CSN-DC

All-Time Record: Calgary has a 41-33-14 all-time record against the Caps.

Current Standings

Calgary Flames: 7-4-2, .615, 16 points, on pace for 101 points. Tied for third in the Pacific Division, tied for sixth in the Western Conference, tied for 11th in the NHL. Last Five: W-L-O-W-W. Playoff Odds: 75.6%

Washington Capitals: 4-5-2, .455, 10 points, on pace for 75 points. Tied for fifth in the Metropolitan Division, tied for 12th in the Eastern Conference, tied for 23rd in the NHL. Last Five: W-L-L-L-L. Playoff Odds: 49.1%

Milestones

Three assists will give Alex Ovechkin 400 for his career, while any old two points will give Brooks Laich 300 for his.

Mark Giordano will move into sole possession of 18th on the all-time Flames games played list, with his 463rd start, breaking a tie with Ken Houston. He needs three assists to tie Dion Phaneuf in 27th with 153 for the Flames.

With two goals, Curtis Glencross will tie Cory Stillman in 23rd all-time, with his 109th.

Birthdays

No Flames have a special day today, but the LA Kings Dustin Brown is turning 30.

Elsewhere

The Flames and Caps are just one of a whopping 12 games being played in the NHL tonight.

Florida Panthers vs. Boston Bruins
Edmonton Oilers vs. Philadelphia Flyers
Carolina Hurricanes vs. Columbus Blue Jackets
St. Louis Blues vs. New Jersey Devils
Chicago Blackhawks vs. Montreal Canadiens
Detroit Red Wings vs. Ottawa Senators
Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Minnesota Wild
Nashville Predators vs. Winnipeg Jets
Los Angeles Kings vs. Dallas Stars
Vancouver Canucks vs. Colorado Avalanche
Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Arizona Coyotes

Tonight's Probable Starting Lineups

* will probably change after the morning skate

Calgary Flames

Line 1

Lance Bouma

Markus Granlund

Jiri Hudler

Line 2

Curtis Glencross

Sean Monahan

David Jones

Line 3

Sven Baertschi

Paul Byron

Devin Setoguchi

Line 4

Brandon Bollig

Josh Jooris

Brian McGrattan

Defensive Pair 1

Mark Giordano

TJ Brodie

Defensive Pair 2

Kris Russell

Dennis Wideman

Defensive Pair 3

Ladislav Smid

Deryk Engelland

Starting Goalie

Karri Ramo

Reserve Goalie

Jonas Hiller

Washington Capitals

Line 1

Alex Ovechkin

Nicklas Backstrom

Joel Ward

Line 2

Marcus Johansson

Evgeny Kuznetsov

Troy Brouwer

Line 3

Jason Chimera

Andre Burakovsky

Eric Fehr

Line 4

Tom Wilson

Michael Latta

Jay Beagle

Defensive Pair 1

Brooks Orpik

John Carlson

Defensive Pair 2

Karl Alzner

Matt Niskanen

Defensive Pair 3

Nate Schmidt

Mike Green

Starting Goalie

Braden Holtby

Reserve Goalie

Justin Peters

Flames Leaders

Average Time-on-Ice: Defensemen; TJ Brodie - 24:39, Mark Giordano - 23:48

Forwards; Mikael Backlund - 17:51, Mason Raymond - 17:28, Curtis Glencross - 17:20

Goals: Dennis Wideman, Mason Raymond - 5, TJ Brodie - 4

Assists: TJ Brodie, Mark Giordano, Joe Colborne - 8

Points: TJ Brodie - 12, Mark Giordano - 11, Jiri Hudler - 10

Plus/Minus: TJ Brodie - plus-8, John Gaudreau - plus-7, Mark Giordano, Paul Byron - plus-5

Penalty Minutes: Curtis Glencross, Brandon Bollig - 16, Mark Giordano - 15

Shots-on-Goal: Sean Monahan - 36, Mark Giordano - 29, Dennis Wideman - 27

Faceoffs: Mikael Backlund (110-for-218) - 50.5%, Joe Colborne (67-for-133) - 50.4%, Matt Stajan (63-for-126) - 50.0%

Hits: Curtis Glencross - 32, Lance Bouma - 31, Brandon Bollig - 29

Blocked Shots: Mark Giordano - 40, Kris Russell - 39, Dennis Wideman - 27

Offensive Point Shares: TJ Brodie - 1.3, Mark Giordano, Dennis Wideman - 1.1

Defensive Point Shares: TJ Brodie - 1.4, Mark Giordano - 1.1, Kris Russell - 0.9

Goaltending Point Shares: Jonas Hiller - 2.2, Karri Ramo - 0.9

Total Point Shares: TJ Brodie - 2.7, Mark Giordano - 2.2, Dennis Wideman - 1.6

Join us later in the GameThread, and check back after the final horn for Mike's recap. Every morning after, we also have an advanced statistical analysis for your reading pleasure. Next up - the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday night.