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Flames face Kings to end Southern California swing

by John Kreiser

FLAMES (8-13-4) at KINGS (16-6-4)


Last 10: Calgary 2-6-2; Los Angeles 6-0-4

Season series: This is the second of five games between the Calgary Flames and the Los Angeles Kings. The Flames won 3-2 at Staples Center on Oct. 21. The final three will be played in Calgary.

Big story: The injury-plagued Flames complete a two-day swing through Southern California against a Kings team that's been piling up points but not wins. Los Angeles is 1-0-3 in its past four games, including a 3-2 shootout loss to the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday.

Team Scope:

Flames: Calgary continues to have trouble at the start of games. The Anaheim Ducks scored twice in a 54-second span in the first period Friday and the Flames never recovered, ending up 5-2 losers. Calgary has lost 18 in a row at Honda Center.

The Flames have been outscored 27-14 in the first period.

"A pretty weak start for us for the first period, once again," defenseman Ladislav Smid said. "The second period we played our game. We played our system and we scored some goals. We can't afford these kinds of first periods. We fall back and then you're trying to make it even. It causes you to [use too] much energy."

Kings: Goalie Ben Scrivens has been terrific since starting goaltender Jonathan Quick went down with a groin injury 2 1/2 weeks ago. Scrivens, acquired from the Toronto Maple Leafs during the summer, is 5-0-3 in eight starts since Quick went down and leads the NHL with a 1.48 goals-against average and .947 save percentage.

Coach Darryl Sutter said Friday he intends to ride Scrivens as much as possible until Quick returns.

"Our schedule, we play three back-to-backs in December, but … days in between games, we go two, three, two, four, Christmas," he told the media. "Really, there's 15 games, counting Nov. 30, in 32 days. It's set up for one guy."

Who’s hot: David Jones had both of Calgary's goals in the loss to Anaheim. He has four points in the past four games. … Scrivens has allowed 11 goals in his eight starts since Quick's injury.

Injury report: The Flames were already dealing with injuries to captain Mark Giordano (ankle), forward Curtis Glencross (knee) and forward TJ Galiardi (back spasms) before defenseman Dennis Wideman (broken hand) and rookie center Sean Monahan (hairline fracture in foot) were injured this week. None of the five played Friday. … In addition to Quick (groin), the Kings are without forwards Matt Frattin (lower body) and Trevor Lewis (lower body), and defenseman Matt Greene (upper body).

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