Preview: Flames vs. Ducks
The Calgary Flames continue to win at home. Now they'll be facing a surging opponent they failed to beat a season ago.
The Flames will try for an eighth straight home win Thursday night when they look to end the Anaheim Ducks' three-game win streak.
Calgary (20-19-5) improved to 9-0-1 in its last 10 at the Scotiabank Saddledome after a 6-3 win over New Jersey on Tuesday. Despite being outshot 38-14 by the Devils, the Flames have a chance for their first eight-game home win streak since Jan. 4-Feb. 3, 2007.
"You gotta find ways to win games through good and bad and tonight was ugly but we found a way to win," coach Brent Sutter said.
Anaheim (13-22-6) has the league's fewest road points with 11, going 3-10-5. The Ducks, though, start a three-game trip in a confident mood thanks to a three-game run capped by Tuesday's 5-2 victory over Dallas.
"Sixteen goals (scored) in three games," coach Bruce Boudreau said. "So when you're scoring that many goals, then good things are usually going to happen to you."
These teams have not met since Anaheim won all four matchups in 2010-11. Three of those wins came in overtime or a shootout and the other one ended with a two-goal margin after an empty-net tally by the Ducks.
Teemu Selanne had eight points in the season series and Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf combined for 14. Perry and Getzlaf, however, have struggled this season, a big reason Anaheim owns the NHL's second-worst record.
Saku Koivu could be a factor this time with seven points during the Ducks' win streak. Koivu notched his second career hat trick Tuesday with Selanne assisting twice.
"There's nothing we can do with the past," Koivu said. "There have been a lot of positive things in the last little while, even though we haven't won all the games. We're scoring goals now, and not allowing a lot of goals. We're feeling good, and it's showing."
The Flames, meanwhile, had six different scorers Tuesday. Curtis Glencross was one of them and added three assists for his first career four-point effort.
"I didn't really know too much that it was my career high or anything," Glencross said. "I was more happy with the two points."
The Flames' power play has picked up steam during their home win streak, with seven goals in 30 chances (23.3 percent). They were 2 for 45 (4.4) over their first 12 at the Saddledome.
"We've been playing well at home, we've been getting our points here," defenseman Cory Sarich said. "We've got to keep that going."
Miikka Kiprusoff is 9-2-1 with a 1.91 goals-against average in 12 career home starts against the Ducks, although the Finnish countryman of Koivu and Selanne allowed eight goals while dropping both last season.
While Kiprusoff is the probable starter for Calgary, it's less clear who will be in goal for Anaheim after Jonas Hiller suffered a lower-body injury that forced him to exit Sunday's 7-4 win over Columbus in the first period.
Hiller, 2-2-0 with a 2.98 GAA in his career against the Flames, could return Thursday. Backup Dan Ellis is out so the other option is Jeff Deslauriers, who started Tuesday for his first NHL action since allowing seven Anaheim goals April 11, 2010, while with Edmonton.