|(30-25-12) 72 points||(32-28-8) 72 points|
11th in West, 3rd in Northwest
9th in East, 3rd in Southeast
The Flames are not healthy… And that may be the understatement of the year. They have 8 players in the infirmary currently the biggest of those was late season addition Michael Cammalleri. Cammalleri along with Blake Comeau and Lance Bouma all could return to action tonight as the Winnipeg Jets come into town for a visit.
The Flames are hanging around the playoff battle sitting only points back of Phoenix and San Jose for seventh and eighth place in the West. The main reason that Calgary is still relevant is the strong play of Mikka Kiprusoff. Kipper has recorded 29 of Calgary’s 30 wins so far.
Rookie Swen Barteschi could see his first NHL game against the Jets and his offensive talents might be able to bolster an offensive attack that has generated only 164 goals. Jerome Iginla leads the way with 27 goals and 54 points. On the flip side the Jets Evander Kane has 26 goals and Blake Wheeler has 54 points. Few would have predicted that Evander Kane would score more times than Iggy buy with 15 games left that might just be the case.
The Jets started last night in eighth place just two points behind the Florida Panthers for first in the Southeast. They ended it still just two points back of Florida but with an overtime win so too is Washington and because they have played one less game they are ahead. Tampa also gained a point and now sit just two points back of Winnipeg.
The Jets head into their eleventh back-to-back game after finally winning their last one against Boston to bring them to 1-9-0 in the second game. Tonight they will look to build off a solid road game in Vancouver that saw them fall just short but still did a lot of things right.
Blake Wheeler was a monster yet again and scored a beautiful goal to give the Jets a 2-1 lead early into the third but Vancouver answered back with two of their own and did the rest of the Southeast division a favor. Calgary is a team ripe for the picking and because of that it has me worried. The Jets have had a tendency to sink down to a weaker teams level and they will have to bring their a-game if they want the two points.
Keys to Victory
Get in Kipper early. Kiprusoff is most vulnerable in the first ten minutes. Getting bodies in front and rattling him during that time should result in an early goal.
Score first. The Jets are in hostile territory but an early goal will bring out the rowdiness of the Jets fans in attendance. It’ll be a C of Red against the Whiteout just like it was when the Whiteout was born.
Shot, then shot some more. The Flames are not particularly great at anything but are good enough to win this game. Firing more pucks at Kipper is a good way to ensure they don’t.
Play the body. The Flames are banged up so the Jets need to be aggressive. Calgary has a lot of inexperience on their bench so hit them and make them struggle with the tempo.
Zach Bogosian (Upper Body) – Questionable
Jets – Ondrej Pavelec (25-22-7, 2.74, .912) [Unconfirmed]
Flames – Mikka Kiprusoff (29-19-8, 2.37, .920) [Confirmed]
While I would love to see the Jets win in Calgary, the simple fact is Marshall will also be there and so far the curse of Marshall has been unbeatable. Flames win.
Winnipeg Jets 2 – Calgary Flames 4