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Flames aim for home-and-home sweep of Blues

by Brian Hunter
FLAMES (32-23-9) at BLUES (28-25-9)


Last 10:
Calgary 6-2-2; St. Louis 4-5-1

Season series:
Third of four meetings between these teams, and the conclusion of a home-and-home that began Sunday with a 1-0 win by the Flames in Calgary. David Moss scored early in the third period and Miikka Kiprusoff finished with 27 saves. Moss also scored twice and Kiprusoff stopped 28 shots as the Flames claimed a 4-1 victory at the Scotiabank Saddledome on Jan. 26.

Big story: It's the second meeting in 48 hours for teams that have been headed in opposite directions of late. Sunday's game told the story of both sides' recent fortunes -- it was close as can be, but Moss took advantage of a turnover in the St. Louis end and beat Ben Bishop at 5:39 of the third for the only goal of the night. Bishop was nearly flawless in just his 10th NHL game, but "nearly" wasn't good enough with Kiprusoff recording the 39th shutout of his career.

Team Scope:

It hasn't been broken over the last several months, so Calgary GM Jay Feaster didn't feel the need to make many fixes to the Flames' roster at the trade deadline. He acquired veteran forward Freddy Modin, who won the Stanley Cup in 2004 with Tampa Bay when Feaster ran the show there, and claimed defenseman Brett Carson off waivers from Carolina.

"It's exciting, coming to Canada to play for the Flames," Modin told "I have some experience playing against them. It was always a fun place to play. A great building, crazy fans. I am looking forward to being on the right side of it this time."

The major deal came earlier in February when St. Louis got forward Chris Stewart and defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk from Colorado, but the Blues had a couple more moves left in them as they obtained draft picks while sending Brad Boyes to the Sabres and Brad Winchester to the Ducks. Backup goalie Ty Conklin went unclaimed after being placed on waivers, so when Jaroslav Halak is activated off injured reserve the team will have to decide whether to return Bishop to the AHL or ask the veteran Conklin to report there.

"He's been awesome since day one," Bishop said of Conklin. "You can go up to him and talk to him about anything. He's been in the League for a long time. He's told me multiple times, 'If you want to talk about anything, let me know.' He's just a great person in general and a great goalie."

Who's hot: Alex Tanguay has 1 goal and 4 assists during a four-game points streak for the Flames. Moss has goals in consecutive games. Kiprusoff is on an 11-2-3 run, allowing two goals or fewer 11 times during that span. … Stewart has 6 goals in as many games since the Blues acquired him. Bishop has a 1.55 goals-against average and .948 save percentage in four outings this season.

Injury report:
Calgary defenseman Adam Pardy (shoulder) and forwards Daymond Langkow (neck) and Raitis Ivanans (concussion) are on injured reserve. … St. Louis defenseman Nikita Nikitin missed Sunday's game with a lower-body injury and forward Vladimir Sobotka left the game with a foot injury. Halak (hand) and forward David Perron (concussion) are on injured reserve.

Stat pack:
Tanguay played in the 800th game of his NHL career in the opener of the home-and-home. … The Blues had a streak of eight straight games with a power-play goal snapped by the Flames on Sunday.

Puck drop:
As hot as Calgary's been, it remains in the position of having to win just about every night in order to maintain its spot in the Western Conference's elite eight. This is the start of a brief two-game road swing that continues Wednesday in Chicago before the team returns home for a couple games over the weekend.

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