Morning Skate Report: Flames vs. Stars

Sunday, 17.02.2013 / 9:23 AM / News
By Torie Peterson  - CalgaryFlames.com (@toriepeterson)
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Morning Skate Report: Flames vs. Stars

BUILDING CONSISTENCY

While the Flames have struggled with consistency within the confines of the Scotiabank Saddledome, Bob Hartley's crew have been put forth extremely strong efforts on the road this season. The Flames have points in three of their four road outings this year (2-1-1) and have looked sharp while skating in other teams barns.

"We're feeling good," Hartley said after the team meeting at the American Airline Centre. "The one thing that we're trying to build on this team is consistency. I like the way we played on the road since the start of the season.

"From now on, we want to keep building. We need to raise expectations. We need to keep getting good results on the road because our plan is to move up in the standings."

The coaching staff hasn't been afraid to shake things up when it comes to their lineup throughout the year and tonight, they be making a couple of key roster moves.

Blake Comeau, who has been playing on the wing this season, will be shuffled over to centre ice to play in between Jarome Iginla and Curtis Glencross.

"It's a great challenge for Blake Comeau because he's worked very hard since the start of the year," Hartley explained. "I feel that he's very responsible on the ice. He wants to learn the game in the three zones, on both sides of the puck.

"We want to build on players like Blake Comeau. He's a solid competitor for us and I think it's a nice challenge for him."

Joey MacDonald will get his first start in net as a Flame tonight as Leland Irving was reassigned to the Abbotsford Heat on Saturday. He's looking forward to the challenge and is feeling confident heading into the tilt.

"Getting the taste (on Friday) took some of the edge off a little bit, getting in there and feeling it," he said. "(Tonight) is the same kind of thing - build on what we did (on Friday) and keep things simple."

Danny Taylor was recalled yesterday and he will back MacDonald up tonight. There is a possibility Taylor will get his first NHL start tomorrow in Phoenix.

CHANGES ON DEFENCE

Hartley confirmed the team will be making changes on the back-end tonight but the bench boss did not elaborate on which blueliners will be skating in the team's third pairing.

"You will see tonight."

Anton Babchuk and Derek Smith suited up on on Friday against St. Louis while Cory Sarich and Chris Butler were healthy scratches.

FLAMES FANTASY HOCKEY TIPS

Mike Cammalleri has had the Stars number over the last couple of years. In the 2011-12 campaign, he led the Flames in scoring against Dallas, notching three goals and six points in four games. Last Wednesday, the winger exploded offensively and posted four points (three goals, one assist) in Calgary's 7-4 win over Dallas.

Captain Jarome Iginla was a force to be reckoned with in the game against Dallas earlier this week. He assisted on one of Cammalleri's markers and made a perfect pass to Curtis Glencross to set up the Flames sixth goal of the evening. In 58 career games against Dallas, Iginla has amassed 16 goals and 37 points.

Rearguard Dennis Wideman enters today's game on a two-game point streak. He scored against St. Louis on Friday and had one assist in Wednesday's win over the Stars.

Roman Cervenka recorded his first multi-point game in the Flames win over the Stars on Wednesday, scoring a goal and assisting on Cammalleri's first period power play marker.

MILESTONES WITHIN REACH

Steve Bégin needs 5 games for 500.

Curtis Glencross needs 2 assists for 100 and 2 points for 200.

Cory Sarich needs 4 points for 150.

Cory Sarich needs 7 games for 900.

Matt Stajan needs 7 points for 300.