It is game day at the Scotiabank Saddledome in Calgary. The Flames welcome Steven Stamkos and the Tampa Bay Lightning for the first and only meeting of the season between the two teams. Game time is 7:30pm and is broadcast on Sportsnet-West and on the Fan 960.
The last time they played in Calgary was March 1, 2009, when Vincent Lecavalier and Martin St. Louis each had 2 goals in the 8-6 Lightning victory.
The Lightning have won 7 of their last 10 games and are sitting in 5th spot in the Eastern Conference with 33 points.
The Bolts will be without Steve Downie for the next month or so as he suffered a high ankle sprain last Thursday against the Bruins. Downie was playing on a line with Martin St.Louis and Steven Stamkos. Simon Gagne has since stepped up to fill the void and has been playing exceptionally well so far picking up a goal and a pair of assists in his last game.
Stamkos is 2nd in the NHL behind Sidney Crosby in both the points column (40) and goals column (21) and leads the NHL with 10 power play goals. With that said, Stamkos has been held off the score sheet in his last two games and held to just two points in his last five games. Is there a key to shutting this guy down?
"We're going to have to work even harder because we know that point producers like that and goal scorers as good as that, when you get shut down you get even hungrier," said Jarome Iginla of Stamkos. "So as much as it's nice that they did that for us, we have an even hungrier Stamkos out there who wants to get back scoring.
Iginla added, "There's no one key really. You try to play hard against him and try to know where he is, but you know he's still going to get his shots. On the power play he's really effective so you try to take that away in the one spot where he gets a ton of shots and a ton of goals from."
The Flames took part in an optional skate Tuesday morning. With a handful of players absent, the lines appeared to look like this:
Tanguay- Stajan- Iginla
Hagman- Jokinen- Bourque
Glencross- Moss- Kotalik
Kostopoulos- Morrison- Jackman
Adam Pardy has been medically cleared to return to the lineup and is expected to be back in the line-up tonight againts the Lightning.
FULL PROJECTED LINEUP VS. TAMPA BAY