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M&G Gametime preview: Sharks visit Calgary

The Flames welcome the San Jose Sharks to the Saddledome, tonight at 8PM.

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Tonight, the 17-8-2 Flames welcome the 13-10-4 San Jose Sharks to the Saddledome, in Calgary, AB. This will be the second of five games between the two. Calgary won the first, 2-0 on November 26th. They'll also faceoff on January 17th and on February 9th in San Jose and again in the Saddledome on February 4th. This contest will close out a three game homestand for the Flames. They defeated the Arizona Coyotes 5-2 on Tuesday and the Colorado Avalanche 4-3 in overtime on Thursday. They'll play the next four contests on the road. The Sharks just finished a six game homestand at 3-1-2, including victories in their last three straight. Tonight will be the first game of a two-game road trip. They'll also play the Edmonton Oilers, tomorrow at 7PM.

The last time the Sharks played the Flames was on November 26th, just over a week ago. Karri Ramo won his first of two shutouts in a row, stopping 32 shots, while Jiri Hudler scored twice and TJ Brodie assisted on both for a 2-0 Calgary win. Antti Niemi turned aside 17-of-18 shots in his loss. * Full Recap * Box Score

We were pretty focused the whole game. We didn’t make too many mistakes. We knew that against a team like that, we have to bear down in our own zone. We didn’t panic late in the game. I think both teams played pretty well defensively. [Hudler] made a nice move and we got the win. - Ramo

Fear The Fin is your source for San Jose NHL hockey.

The Flames most recent game action came on Thursday night, when they defeated the Colorado Avalanche 4-3 in overtime. After a scoreless first period, the second period would see the Avalanche open up a 2-1 lead with goals from Matt Duchene (9) and Nick Holden (2) and one from Dennis Wideman (9). The third frame opened with a Curtis Glencross (5) goal after one minute to tie the score. After the Avs took the lead again with less than six minutes remaining on a Alex Tanguay (9) highlight reel goal, Wideman (10) scored his second of the night with 1:17 remaining in regulation. Sean Monahan (10) potted the game winner just two minutes into overtime. Karri Ramo earned his fifth win in a row by stopping 26-of-29 shots, while Semyon Varlamov made 21 saves in defeat. * Box Score * Full Recap

T

It's well deserved. That's a big one for him. Obviously he used to be there (in Colorado). Right now, we're rolling. Even as a group we knew we had to find a way to win that one. We approach every game the same way, and obviously it's nice to do that for him, but at the end of the day, every game is important right now. We're finding ways to get the two points. - Monahan on coach Bob Hartley's 400th career victory.

For the Avalanche, go to Mile High Hockey.

San Jose scored a season high seven goals on Thursday in a three goal victory over the Boston Bruins. Tommy Wingels (8,  9), Tyler Kennedy (2, 3), and Joe Pavelski (11, 12) scored two goals each, and Tomas Hertl (6) added another for the Sharks' total. Niemi made 20 saves for the win. The Bruins lit the lamp ton two from Reilly Smith (5, 6), and one each from Torey Krug (4) and Gregory Campbell (3). Tuukka Rask made 37 saves on 44 shots. * Box Score * Full Recap

We kind of talked about it being a low-scoring game. They haven't given up many goals. You anticipate it probably being a bit of a different game, but it shows that we can score a bunch of goals. We feel good about our offense right now. - Wingels

For the Bruins, head to Stanley Cup of Chowder.

GameTime: 8PM

Where2Watch: CBC, CSN-CA

All-Time Record: Flames are 53-38-12 all-time against San Jose, their best points percentage (.573) against any Pacific Division opponent.

Current Record

Calgary Flames: 17-8-2, .667, 36 points, on pace for 109 points. Third in the Pacific Division, fifth in the Western Conference, tied for 9th in the NHL (with the Montreal Canadiens). Last Five: L-W-W-W-W. Playoff Odds: 91.8%

San Jose Sharks: 13-10-4, .556, 30 points, on pace for 91 points. Fifth in the Pacific Division, 10th in the Western Conference, 17th in the NHL. Last Five: O-L-W-W-W. Playoff Odds: 44.1%

Probable Starting Lineups

* based off yesterday's practice, subject to change

Calgary Flames

Line 1

Curtis Glencross

Sean Monahan

David Jones

Line 2

Johnny Gaudreau

Josh Jooris

Jiri Hudler

Line 3

Michael Ferland

Markus Granlund

Paul Byron

Line 4

Brandon Bollig

Matt Stajan

Lance Bouma

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

Matt Stajan returns to the lineup tonight, and I guessed Bob Hartley would replace Sven Baertschi. Were I Hartley, I would definitely consider sitting Bollig instead.

San Jose Sharks

Line 1

Tomas Hertl

Joe Thornton

Joe Pavelski

Line 2

Patrick Marleau

Logan Couture

Tommy Wingels

Line 3

Tyler Kennedy

James Sheppard

Matthew Nieto

Line 4

Mike Brown

Andrew Desjardins

John Scott

Defensive Pair 1

Justin Braun

Marc-Edouard Vlasic

Defensive Pair 2

Brent Burns

Brenden Dillon

Defensive Pair 3

Scott Hannan

Matt Irwin

Starting Goalie

Antti Niemi

Reserve Goalie

Alex Stalock

Faceoff at center ice is just after the anthems tonight, around 8:10PM. Join us back here at M&G for your live gamethread.