Calgary Flames vs San Jose Sharks, 7 PM MT, Scotiabank Saddledome, Calgary AB
Radio: Sportsnet 960
Calgary Flames 34-14-5 (73) - San Jose Sharks 31-16-7 (69)
Buckle up! The Flames are back on the ice tonight after another extended break to take on the San Jose Sharks from the Scotiabank Saddledome. This one is interesting from a few different angles, but the main being the fact that the Sharks are making some noise in the Pacific and find themselves only 4 points behind front running Calgary. The Flames are 1-1-0 since returning from their nine day break, but were playing very hot prior to going on vacation. The Flames had won eight of nine and collected a point in all nine games.
The Sharks have come roaring back in the Pacific thanks to a seven game winning streak from January 2nd to January 15th. They are currently on a three game winning streak, having taken down the Winnipeg Jets most recently. While they are winning games, the Sharks can be scored on. San Jose went through a small dip, losing three straight where they were outscored 18-8 and even the first game of their current three game winning streak saw them surrender six goals in a 7-6 victory over the Washington Capitals.
These two teams last played on December 31st in Calgary with the Flames hanging eight on the Sharks in a 8-5 victory (Johnny Gaudreau, Matthew Tkachuk and Sean Monahan combined for 13 points). The game was physical and chippy with Sam Bennett’s late game hit on Radim Simek capping off the physical play. Evander Kane was more than willing to talk....in the locker room about the hit and how Calgary was tougher when he wasn’t on the ice. Yawn. The opening few minutes of tonight’s contest should be....interesting to put it mildly. Whether each team decides to throw down is yet to be seen, but this is a very important game for both Calgary and San Jose and they might be wise to just settle in and play hockey. A win and the Flames can extend their lead and keep the Sharks from nipping at their heels or San Jose can climb within two points of the top spot in the Pacific with a victory. The Flames are 38-29-4 all time at home against the Sharks and have won three of the last five times San Jose has come to town.
Starting Goalies (E=Expected, C=Confirmed)
Flames: Rittich (E)- 20-4-4, 2.49 GAA, .918 Save%
Sharks: Jones (E)- 25-10-4, 2.92 GAA, .897 Save%
Flames: Goals- Gaudreau (29), Points- Gaudreau (74), PIM- Bennett (72), Save%- Rittich (.918)
Sharks: Goals- Pavelki (29), Points- Burns (58), PIM- Kane (103), Save%- Jones (.897)
What’s Happening With The Opposition?
San Jose Sharks Coverage: Fear The Fin
Last Time Out
Calgary Flames 4 - Carolina Hurricanes 3
San Jose Sharks 3 - Winnipeg Jets 2 (OT)
Players To Watch
Elias Lindholm (C): 23G - 37A, 12 points in last 10 games
San Jose Sharks
Evander Kane (F): 21G - 21A, 24 PIM in last 5 games