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Preview: Devils at Flames

Troy Brouwer returns for Calgary; New Jersey looks to end four-game losing streak

by Aaron Vickers / Correspondent

DEVILS (16-18-9) at FLAMES (23-19-2)

9 p.m. ET; SNW, MSG+2, NHL.TV


Devils team scope

The New Jersey Devils are on a four-game losing streak (0-2-2) and are playing the second of a four-game Western Conference road trip. The Devils lost 3-2 in overtime at the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday. "We've been making mistakes and other teams have been capitalizing so we just have to be a little bit smarter and a little bit tighter on those details," goaltender Cory Schneider said after the game. The Devils lost to the Oilers after having leads of 1-0 and 2-1. "I feel we sit back on leads sometimes and that's not the way to go, especially against a team like that," forward Taylor Hall said. "There's a way to sit on leads, there's a smart way, and we didn't do that. It's definitely tough to take." Goaltender Keith Kinkaid could start after Schneider made 31 saves in the loss at Edmonton. Kinkaid is 4-4-2 with a 2.74 goals against average and .917 save percentage in 11 games this season. He last started on Dec. 31 when he allowed six goals on 26 shots in a 6-2 loss to the Washington Capitals. New Jersey is 3-4-3 in the first game, and 4-3-2 in the second game of back-to-backs this season.


Flames team scope

Forward Troy Brouwer will return to the lineup for the Calgary Flames after missing eight games with a broken finger. "It feels good, for sure," Brouwer said. "With the injury, we were predicting four weeks or so, give or take. To be able to be back in two-and-a-half… everything went exactly as it needed to to come back this early." Brouwer, who has eight goals and 17 points in 36 games this season, sustained the injury against the Vancouver Canucks on Dec. 23 when he was hit by teammate Kris Versteeg. "He's a good veteran presence for us," coach Glen Gulutzan said. "The reason we brought in Troy was to get some size and weight in our lineup. He's going to help us in that regard." The Flames, who are 6-3-0 in their past nine games, will be without forward Micheal Ferland, who sustained a lower-body injury against the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday. He is day to day. "The one thing with [Ferland] being out, it hurts us too, but it's good the timing coming back with [Brouwer]," Gulutzan said. "We lose a physical presence in our lineup and to get [Brouwer] back is going to help fill that void."


Devils projected lineup

Taylor Hall -- Adam Henrique -- PA Parenteau

Michael Cammalleri -- Travis Zajac -- Kyle Palmieri

Devante Smith-Pelly -- Blake Coleman -- Nick Lappin

Miles Wood -- Sergey Kalinin -- Beau Bennett

Damon Severson -- Kyle Quincey

Jon Merrill -- Ben Lovejoy

Karl Stollery -- Steven Santini

Keith Kinkaid

Cory Schneider

Scratched: Luke Gazdic, Pavel Zacha, Seth Helgeson

Injured: John Moore (concussion), Vernon Fiddler (lower body), Jacob Josefson (illness), Andy Greene (wrist), Yohann Auvitu (lower body)

Flames projected lineup

Kris Versteeg -- Sean Monahan -- Troy Brouwer

Johnny Gaudreau -- Sam Bennett -- Alex Chiasson

Matthew Tkachuk -- Mikael Backlund -- Michael Frolik

Lance Bouma -- Matt Stajan -- Garnet Hathaway

Mark Giordano -- Dougie Hamilton

TJ Brodie -- Dennis Wideman

Jyrki Jokipakka -- Deryk Engelland

Chad Johnson

Brian Elliott

Scratched: Brett Kulak, Freddie Hamilton

Injured:  Micheal Ferland (lower body)

Status report

The Devils and Flames each held an optional skate Friday. ... Brouwer will return to a line with Monahan and Versteeg, and Gaudreau is expected to skate with Bennett and Chiasson. ... Johnson will make his fourth consecutive start for Calgary.


Who's hot

Tkachuk has 10 assists and 12 points in his past 11 games. ... Backlund has six goals and 13 points in his past nine games. ... Frolik has five goals and 10 points in his past nine games. 

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