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Flames aim to end road losing streak in Anaheim

by Curtis Zupke /

FLAMES (25-18-3) at DUCKS (30-10-6)


ANAHEIM -- The Calgary Flames have grown tired of hearing about their long losing streak at Honda Center, but that didn't stop coach Bob Hartley from pulling out a one-liner about their game Wednesday against the Anaheim Ducks.

"It's another big game," Hartley said. "What went on in 1940 and what went on in 2005, 2010, what can we change? Elvis is dead, the Beatles have split and there's a big game tonight."

Calgary has lost 19 straight games (0-14-5) at Honda Center since Jan. 19, 2004. It is the longest road losing streak in the NHL. The Flames come in 4-0-0 on their five-game Pacific Division trip and can match their six-game road winning streak from 2009.

Calgary is a remarkable 14-3-1 against the division and will continue to ride goalie Joni Ortio, who is 4-0-0 with 1.23 goals-against average, a .958 save percentage and one shutout.

"You look at his eyes and you see sparks in his eyes right now," Hartley said. "He's always been that kind of guy. I remember since I've been in this organization that's who he is. He wants the net. Now he's getting a chance and he's taking advantage of it. He's shown us that he's not a morning glory."

Hartley said he will center Josh Jooris will be back in the lineup after missing five games because of an upper-body injury. Hartley said he liked the chemistry earlier between Jooris, left wing Johnny Gaudreau and right wing Jiri Hudler.

"I feel good to go now," Jooris said. "It's really nice to get this one in before the break."

Ortio beat Anaheim on March 12, 2014, in his only other appearance against the Ducks. Without much body of work as reference, Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau put it simply when asked about the goalie.

"Just hopefully you-shoot-it-where-he-ain't type thing," Boudreau said. "With all the good goalies in the League you do the same thing. You've got to get traffic. You've got to shoot. You've got to go to the net, and the rebounds that you do get you've got to get in the air and you can't put on the ice."

Anaheim will insert left wing Rene Bourque in place of left wing Devante Smith-Pelly. It's been a rotation, and Bourque is trying to increase his production despite different linemates and inconsistent playing time. He has two goals in 34 games this season split between the Montreal Canadiens and Ducks.

"I want to stay in the lineup every night and I've probably got to play better in order to do that," Bourque said. "But I think I'm playing better than I was when I was in Montreal and I've just got to keep climbing."

The Ducks have won four straight and can get to the All-Star break with 68 points.

"The break doesn't start until [Thursday] so we can't be sitting here thinking that we're coming in and we're starting it already, especially against a team that's so committed," Boudreau said.

Here are the projected lineups:


Johnny Gaudreau - Josh Jooris - Jiri Hudler

Lance Bouma - Sean Monahan - David Jones

Mason Raymond - Mikael Backlund - Joe Colborne

Brandon Bollig - Matt Stajan - Paul Byron

Mark Giordano - TJ Brodie

Kris Russell - Dennis Wideman

Raphael Diaz - Deryk Engelland

Joni Ortio

Jonas Hiller

Scratched: Markus Granlund, Tyler Wotherspoon, Karri Ramo

Injured: Ladislav Smid (upper body), Curtis Glencross (lower body)


Patrick Maroon - Ryan Getzlaf - Corey Perry

Matt Beleskey - Ryan Kesler - Kyle Palmieri

Andrew Cogliano - Rickard Rakell - Jakob Silfverberg

Rene Bourque - Nate Thompson - Tim Jackman

Cam Fowler - Ben Lovejoy

Hampus Lindholm - Francois Beauchemin

Colby Robak - Sami Vatanen

Frederik Andersen

Ilya Bryzgalov

Scratched: Devante Smith-Pelly

Injured: Eric Brewer (foot), Clayton Stoner (lower body)

Status report: Diaz is expected to go back in the lineup and Hartley does not yet want to use Wotherspoon. … Andersen has won five straight. … Brewer is skating but is not yet cleared. … Stoner was a late scratch after taking the morning skate. ... Anaheim sent defenseman Mark Fistric to Norfolk of the American Hockey League after he cleared waivers.

Who's hot: Monahan has scored in three straight games. ... Wideman's 12 goals are tied for first among NHL defensemen. ... Perry has four goals in two games and six points in his past five games. ... Rakell has five points in his past three games.

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