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Game Primer: Flames look to avenge the Avs

by Sue Palanki / Calgary Flames
FLAMES LEADING SCORERS

Regular Season
Player
GP
G
A
P
Iginla 48 19 36 55
Cammalleri 47 25 23 48
Langkow 48 16 22 38

Record: 30-14-4
Season Series: 3-1-0
Last Five: 3-2-0

vs. Colorado Avalanche

Record:
23-26-1
Season Series: 1-3-0
Last Five: 2-3-0
AVALANCHE LEADING SCORERS

Regular Season
Player
GP
G
A
P
Smyth 50 16 22 38
Hejduk 50 18 19 37
Stasny 34 10 21 31

Flames @ Avalanche
7:30 p.m. MT
Pepsi Center
Denver, CO
TV: Sportsnet
Radio: The Fan 960

THE MATCH-UP
The Calgary Flames had a good two-month stretch with the majority of their games at home hence posting a 19-5-3 home record at the Pengrowth Saddledome. In the second half of the season, 20 of their games will be on the road including a seven-game road trip in March.

The Flames are 11-9-1 on the road and will have to improve in their remaining away games if they want to stay strong at first in the Northwest Division, or even achieve a loftier goal of knocking off the Detroit Red Wings for the second place spot in the Western Conference.

Calgary won eight out of 11 games in January with two of those losses on the road against Chicago and Colorado.

February’s schedule includes 13 games of which seven are road games and five are against other teams in the same division. They begin the month with two back-to-back road games with the first stop in Denver when they face the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center on Monday.

The Flames will be looking to avenge their 6-2 loss from January 18. The team was a bit fatigued that night having played the Phoenix Coyotes the night before and losing 3-4 before flying out to Denver that same night for an early 6pm matchup at Pepsi Center.

"Well, we had a tough road schedule then and to not make any excuses…we do owe them one and we’re gonna go in there with our guns up," Adrian Aucoin said.

"We had a really rough game, a couple guys were beat up, we were a little tired so I think we’re going to go in there really fresh and play a really good game."

This time around the Flames are coming off a 3-1 victory over the Nashville Predators on Friday, and had a weekend off to practice and rest. The third and fourth lines stepped up with Aucoin, Matthew Lombardi and Andre Roy all contributing goals in the first season sweep over the Preds. The Flames reached the 30 win mark in their 48th game, the fastest they've reached that total since 1989.

"We’ve been playing pretty well all the way from Kipper to the first, second and to the fourth (lines)," Roy said who will be playing his 500th career game tonight. "Everybody has been contributing in different games, but I think we still have a lot of work to do and just keep playing hard every game."

The Colorado Avalanche are a dismal 23-26-1 and dead last in the Northwest. They fell 3-4 to the Anaheim Ducks on Saturday. Both Milan Hejduk and Ian Lapierriere scored goals to give the Avs a 3-2 lead, but Ducks’ Scott Niedermayer tied the game, and Teemu Selanne added one more.

"We’re running out of time," Laperriere said. "Next thing you know, we’ll have ten games left and we’ll be way out of it. If you have to win ten games in a row, that's impossible. We don’t want to be in that situation."

After tonight’s matchup, the Flames fly to Dallas and meet the Stars at the American Airlines Arena on Tuesday night.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

For the Flames…

Kipper
Kiprusoff

Miikka Kiprusoff collected his 30th win on Friday and is not only well on his way of beating his 42 wins record during his Vezina-winning season in 2005-06, but being the first goalie to clinch 50 wins in a season. He's 30-12-3 with a goals-against-average of 2.76 and a .905 saves percentage for the season. He is 16-10-1 against Colorado with a 2.67 GAA.

For the Avs...

Milan Hejduk
Hejduk

The Avs' offence has been struggling, but Milan Hejduk netted his 18th goal of the season on Saturday. He's tallied five goals in the past seven games including a pair in last Thursday's game against the Toronto Maple Leafs. He has 48 career points (23 goals, 25 assists) against the Flames and scored his 300th career goal during the January 18 matchup.


PREVIOUS GAME


Calgary 3, Nashville 1
Friday, January 30, 2009

The Flames took a 3-1 victory over the Nashville Predators on Friday night. Matthew Lombardi opened the scoring at 7:23 of the second period before Andre Roy netted his third of the season off a great feed by Eric Nystrom at 12:25 of the middle frame which was the eventual game winner. JP Dumont ruined the shutout bid for Miikka Kiprusoff at 7:57 of the third when he followed up his own shot, and tucked in the rebound. Adrian Aucoin scored a power play knuckler to seal the win. Kiprusoff made 28 saves for his 30th win of the season.

Power Play:1/7 (14%)Penalty Killing : 4/4 (100%)
Shots:Calgary: 32,Nashville: 29
Attendance:19,289
FLAMES MILESTONES WITHIN REACH

Todd Bertuzzi needs three power play goals for 100
Craig Conroy needs six games for 900
Jarome Iginla needs seven goals for 400, six points to pass MacInnis for 2nd on Flames All-Time list, and 14 to become the All-Time Leader
Daymond Langkow needs seven points for 600
Matthew Lombardi needs four assists for 100
Dion Phaneuf needs nine games for 300 and ten points for 200
Cory Sarich needs seven assists for 100
Coach Mike Keenan needs two wins to pass Pat Quinn for 4th in all-time wins

INJURY REPORT

Jim Vandermeer continues to be a healthy scratch in the last three games.
Brandon Prust (jaw) and Wayne Primeau (foot) are expected to return in February, and Rhett Warrener (shoulder) is out indefinitely.
 

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