Thursday, March 12, 2009

Game Preview: Flames at Wings

Please keep it up. Hopefully the Wings can string together some more wins as we come down the stretch. Only 14 games remain on the schedule for Detroit and every point matters for home-ice and top seed in the playoffs.

Calgary Outlook:
Calgary comes into tonight's game with 3 straight losses and a 6-4 in the last 10 record. However, Calgary is the best team the Wings have played (in the standings) since San Jose on Feb 25. Calgary is however one of the better teams in the league and has been built around goalie Miikka Kiprusoff. The additions of Jordan Leopold and Olli Jokinen at the trade deadline have yet to turn them into an unstoppable force but I think it's only a matter of time.

Detroit Outlook: Detroit looks to win two in a row following the win over the Coyotes in overtime on Tuesday. The Red Wings have won the first two meetings between these two teams and look to lock-up the regular season series. I would expect Ty Conklin to get the start in net tonight at home. He was the winning goalie in both games against the Flames prior to tonight's meeting. The Wings continue to be effective on the powerplay and could get several chances tonight against a Calgary team that gives up a man quite often.

What to Look For: Look for both teams to play a physical game. The Flames are built as a more physical team than the Wings are but lately Detroit hasn't backed down from physical play. The call-up of Aaron Downey has added a little bit more of a physical mentality while still playing puck possession hockey. Calgary will look for a big game from Jarome Iginla, Olli Jokinen, Mike Camalleri, and Miikka Kiprusoff. If Miika is on tonight there's little hope for the Wings but the fact that Calgary takes around 17 penalty minutes per game could play a big part in a Wings win. Detroit will look to Johan Franzen, Pavel Datsyuk, Tomas Holmstrom, and Ty Conklin. I think Holmstrom could be getting back to normal following his injury, and if he gets back to 100%, the rest of the league should be on the lookout.


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