Calgary Flames @ Vancouver Canucks, 8 PM MT, Rogers Arena, Vancouver, BC
|Radio: Sportsnet 960|
The Flames are doing exactly what railroaded their season last year by tripping coming out of the gate. Calgary dropped their 2nd striaght to the Oilers and are now sitting at 0-2-0 as they head to Vancouver to take on the Canucks. The Flames all time are slightly under .500 in Vancouver (66-68-18) and would like to get that record closer to breaking even with a win tonight.
Defence has been the Flames Achilles Heels so far this season and they are allowing more breakaway attempts than they would like. Brian Elliott played better in his second start with the Flames, but he still allowed 4 goals on 29 shots. The Flames will need to buckle down and play much better defence if they plan on containing the Sedin Twins and newcomer Loui Eriksson. Vancouver has proven goal scorers and solid veteran goaltending in Ryan Miller, so this won’t be an easy trip west for the Flames.
Vancouver has yet to play this season and they finished the preseason with a record of 3-4-0 and scored 17 goals in the preseason. The Canucks and Flames split their preseason contests 1-1, but Vancouver outscored the Flames 5-2, the last being a 4-0 shutout win over the Flames. These two teams played 5 times last season with the Flames owning Vancouver with a 4-1-0 record and being just under a goal and a half (1.4) better a game.
Here’s how the two teams match-up.
|Calgary Flames||Vancouver Canucks|
|6th Pacific||Division||3rd Pacific|
|5th West (tie)||Conference||3rd West (tie)|
|Elliott (.818%)||SV %||N/A|
Calgary Flames 3 Edmonton Oilers 5
The Flames last skated on Saturday night and another bad defensive showing did them in as they lost 5-3 to the Oilers. Calgary came out flying in the first period dominating, but seemed to rest on their 2-1 lead and the Oilers took advantage. Calgary peppered Cam Talbot with 24 first period shots, but only managed another 11 for the rest of the game. Brian Elliott looked slightly better in net last night and the Flames defence didn’t really help him either. Nicklas Grossmann was given the night off and Jyrki Jikoipakka got on the ice for the first time this season and chipped in with a goal. Here’s the highlights.
Here’s Glen Gulutzan on the loss to Edmonton:
Vancouver has yet to take the ice for a regular season game. The last time they skated was on October 8th where they took down the Oilers 3-2 in a preseason contest. Here are the highlights:
Calgary Flames: Chad Johnson (expected)
Vancouver Canucks: Ryan Miller (expected)
Players To Watch
Calgary Flames: Johnny Gaudreau. The Flames top forward held out until right before the season started and has been slow to start. While his contemporaries (McDavid and Matthews) have been lighting up the score board, Gaudreau looks a step slow and only has one point in two games. It’s nothing to panic about, but Gaudreau just got a big contract and it’s time to step up and lead the Flames offence.
Vancouver Cancuks: Loui Eriksson. The Swedish forward left Boston and signed a 6 year, $36 million dollar deal with Vancouver in the offseason. Eriksson was brought in to add some scoring punch to an already potent Vancouver lineup. He played in all 82 games for the Bruins last season and had 63 points (30 goals and 33 assists).