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From the morning skate

by Kristi Hennessy / Calgary Flames

The Blackhawks are paying their second visit to the Scotiabank Saddledome this season. Their last visit was back on November 19th when they were defeated 7-2 by the Flames.

"It was 30 games ago," said Alex Tanguay. "I think they are a different team, they had some of their players hurt at that time. For us, we're very aware of what the standings are at. We're in no position to give points away.

"Tonight, it's one of those teams where you put two points up and you beat them and move past them. They're feeling the same way on the other side so you'll see some desperate hockey."

The two teams last met in Chicago on December 5th when the Hawks doubled up the Flames 4-2. Tonight marks the third of four meetings between the two teams.

Heading into Monday night's matchup, the Flames are up on the Blackhawks by just one point in the tight Western Conference standings. The Flames are sitting with 59 points and the Hawks have 58, with two games in hand on the Flames.

"We're playing a very good hockey team," said Coach Brent Sutter. "They are in the same situation as we're in right now- we're battling to get to the dance. They are the Stanley Cup Champions and until someone knocks them off, that's what they are. But the situation that both teams are in tonight, it's a playoff type game."

The Flames took part in their regular morning skate Monday morning as they prepare for this tight match-up. Niklas Hagman was on the ice with the Flames as was Lance Bouma. Hagman was skating with the team, however, was not taking part in the line drills. Instead, he skated by himself and will be a game time decision. If he is in, then Bouma will sit out.

The lines for tonight appeared to be as follows:


Kiprusoff will get the start in net against the Blackhawks.


Patrick Kane led Chicago with eight points (4g, 4a) against the Flames last season. Kane also leads the Blackhawks in career goals (6) and points (14) in just 13 all-time meetings with the Flames.

Olli Jokinen needs one point to hit the 600 NHL career points.

Robyn Regehr will play his 800th NHL career game tonight.

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