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Ducks at Flames preview

Calgary seeking fourth straight win; Anaheim is 3-1-0 after seven-game losing streak

by Aaron Vickers / Correspondent

DUCKS (24-27-9) at FLAMES (37-16-7)

9 p.m. ET; SNW, FS-W, NHL.TV


The Game

Goalie Mike Smith will make his season-high fifth straight start when the Calgary Flames play the Anaheim Ducks at Scotiabank Saddledome on Friday.

Smith is 3-0-1 with a 2.46 goals-against average and .915 save percentage in his past four games.

Calgary, which leads the San Jose Sharks by one point for first place in the Pacific Division and the Western Conference, has outscored opponents 14-8 during a three-game winning streak.

Anaheim, five points back of the Minnesota Wild for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Western Conference, has won two straight and is 3-1-0 in the past four games after a seven-game losing streak.


Players to watch

Ducks goalie Ryan Miller is 2-0-0 with a 1.00 goals-against average, .964 save percentage and one shutout in two starts since returning from a knee injury.

Flames captain Mark Giordano is two points from becoming the fourth defenseman in NHL history to have at least 60 points at age 35 or older. He would join Nicklas Lidstrom (2005-06, 2006-07, 2007-08, 2010-11), Al MacInnis (1998-99, 2002-03) and Sergei Zubov (2005-06).


They said it

"To me, being a former player, this is the most fun time of the year. All you do is wake up and look at the standings every day. This is what you play for, to make the playoffs. The dog days of February are almost over. It's crunch time. Those are the fun games to play…when every game means so much." -- Ducks assistant Rich Preston

"Guys are obviously aware of what position we're in. We're hockey players. We know those things. But it's not really talked much about. We just really enjoy ourselves. The mood is pretty light." -- Calgary defenseman Travis Hamonic


Ducks projected lineup

Rickard Rakell -- Ryan Getzlaf -- Corey Perry

Max Jones -- Adam Henrique -- Troy Terry

Devin Shore -- Derek Grant -- Jakob Silfverberg

Nick Ritchie -- Ryan Kesler -- Carter Rowney

Cam Fowler -- Michael Del Zotto

Hampus Lindholm -- Josh Manson

Jaycob Megna -- Brandon Montour

Ryan Miller

Kevin Boyle

Scratched: Andy Welinski , Daniel Sprong

Injured: John Gibson (upper body), Chad Johnson (head)


Flames projected lineup

Johnny Gaudreau -- Sean Monahan -- Matthew Tkachuk

Michael Frolik -- Mikael Backlund -- Elias Lindholm

Sam Bennett -- Mark Jankowski -- Austin Czarnik

Andrew Mangiapane -- Derek Ryan -- Garnet Hathaway

Mark Giordano -- Rasmus Andersson

Noah Hanifin -- Travis Hamonic

TJ Brodie -- Dalton Prout

Mike Smith

David Rittich

Scratched: Curtis Lazar

Injured: James Neal (lower body), Oliver Kylington (lower body), Michael Stone (blood clot)


Status report

The Ducks held an optional morning skate. … Andersson will skate on Calgary's top defense pair with Giordano. Prout will play for Kylington, who is day-to-day.


Stat pack

Silfverberg has three goals in two games and is one from 100 with the Ducks. Henrique has four points (two goals, two assists) in two games. Del Zotto will play his 600th NHL game. … Lindholm has two goals and seven assists during a six-game point streak. Backlund will play his 600th NHL game. Bennett and Hanifin will each play his 300th NHL game.

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