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Flames continue homestand against Jets

by Staff Writer / Calgary Flames

JETS (26-17-8) at FLAMES (27-20-3)

TV: TSN3, SNW

Season series: The Winnipeg Jets and Calgary Flames play for the second time this season. Calgary defeated the Jets 4-1 at MTS Centre on Oct. 19. Flames left wing Mason Raymond had a goal and two assists and goaltender Jonas Hiller made 34 saves. The Jets hold a three-point lead on Calgary for the Western Conference's first Stanley Cup Playoff wild-card spot; however, the Flames have a game in hand on Winnipeg.

Jets team scope: Winnipeg began a stretch of seven consecutive games against Western Conference opponents with a 5-2 home loss against the Dallas Stars on Saturday, the Jets' third loss in a row. Winnipeg allowed a season-high four power-play goals on eight opportunities, and the penalty kill fell from 10th in the NHL at the start of the game to 16th (81.4 percent). The Jets have been shorthanded 210 times this season, the most in the League and 30 more than the 29th-place Pittsburgh Penguins. Winnipeg's 14.4 penalty minutes per game are the most in the League. Jets coach Paul Maurice benched defenceman Zach Bogosian twice Saturday after slashing penalties. With a 14-6-5 road record, the Jets have earned the most road points in the League this season. The game against Calgary is the first game of a back-to-back set; the Jets finish their two-game road trip against the Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday. Goaltender Michael Hutchinson has played the past two games, but Ondrej Pavelec is expected to play at least one game on the road trip.

Flames team scope: The Flames erased a 2-0 deficit against the Edmonton Oilers at home Saturday and scored four third-period goals for a 4-2 win. The win gave the Flames a three-point lead on the Los Angeles Kings for the second wild-card spot in the Western Conference. Calgary's 63 third-period goals this season lead the League, and their 32 goals-against in the third period are the fewest in the League. The Flames' nine wins when trailing after the second period are most in the League, and their .360 winning percentage trailing after two periods is third-best. Forward Jiri Hudler (illness) did not play against Edmonton. Hiller has started the past three games and allowed four goals in the three starts combined. Calgary is in the middle of a stretch of 10 of 12 games at home. The Flames have not played a road game outside of the Pacific Division since Dec. 14 and do not play another non-divisional road game until Feb. 24. Calgary continues its six-game homestand against the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday.

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