Calgary vs Vancouver by 20Legend
Calgary Flames (25-28-3) has clearly been struggling of late with three straight losses and 8:15 on goal difference form those games. Their last match ended with a loss against Minnesota Wild (3-5) in a game which they were almost getting back two times, at 2-3 and 3-4, but it was not enough in the end. After pulling their goalkeeper in try of getting another goal they failed to make it, and Minnesota got an easy job with hitting the empty net.
Ladislav Smid is set as day-to-day after taking a hit against Minnesota Wild in the last match, while Dennis Wideman has 12 games left to serve after getting a 20 matches-ban for the incident with the linesman on January 27th. Their goaltender Jonas Hiller is expected to start his fourth game in a row as Karri Ramo is finished this season after getting a knee-injury on February 6th. That has led The Flames to recall Joni Ortio from the AHL to serve as a backup for Hiller. Calgary Flames did not practice on Thursday and will be fully fit otherwise and prepared for a tough clash. Jonas Hiller has a 3.27 GAA and a .886 save percentage and has let in four games from his last three games.
Vancouver Canucks (22-23-12) has experienced a similar form as Calgary Flames has done recently with three straight defeats. It has been three games at home for Vancouver Canucks and all three games have been lost by the score 2-5. After trailing losing to the former struggling Minnesota Wild (2-5), they lost against a very solid Anaheim Ducks (2-5) that were up by 0-4 before Vancouver Canucks got back into the game with 2-4 late in the last period. However, it was way too late and The Ducks easily grabbed the win when Bieksa got the empty net goal with two and a half minutes left.
Goaltender Jacob Markstrom is expected to replace Ryan Miller tonight. Marksrom has a 2.45 GAA and a .921 save percentage so far this season. His last appearance against Minnesota Wild (2-5) resulted in five conceded goals from 34 shots.
This meeting is a Pacific Division rivalry as Calgary Flames (6th) is three points behind Vancouver Canucks (5th). With the current defensive form of both teams lately, it is naturally to expect another match where both teams can win. Over 5 goals seem highly interesting in that perspective and it will be the pick here.