NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Saturday, February 8th
(All times Eastern)
Calgary Flames (22-28-7) at Philadelphia Flyers (29-23-6), 1 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Philadelphia Flyers will try to head into the
Olympic break by matching their longest winning streak of the season as they
host the Calgary Flames in Saturday's matinee battle at Wells Fargo Center.
The Flyers have won three straight and four of their last five games. The club
recently won the final two tests on a three-game tour of California and
returned home to post Thursday's 3-1 triumph over the Colorado Avalanche.
Philadelphia enters Saturday -- the final day of action before the league goes
on hiatus for the Winter Olympics -- holding onto third place in the
Metropolitan Division with a one-point lead over Columbus. The top three teams
in each division earn an automatic berth in the playoffs.
Steve Mason turned away 38 shots to lead the Flyers to Thursday's win over the
visiting Avalanche. Mason, who is 4-1-0 with a pair of shutouts over his last
five outings, could get a seventh straight start tonight despite battling
cramps in the latter part of the win against Colorado.
"It started in the second period and just got progressively worse as the third
period went on," Mason said of the cramping issues. "You just clock watch more
than anything and you're just looking for a stoppage to calm down and slow
your breathing down to slow the rate of the cramping. It was a long third
Mark Streit and Michael Raffl scored a goal apiece and Claude Giroux added an
empty netter on Thursday for the Flyers. Sean Couturier registered two assists
in the win.
Philadelphia's only four-game winning streak of the season came from Dec.
23-31 and the Flyers picked up win No. 4 of that hot stretch against the
The Flyers recorded a 4-1 win in Calgary on Dec. 31. as Brayden Schenn notched
a goal and two assists and backup Ray Emery stopped 23-of-24 shots. Philly has
won two straight and three of its past four games against Calgary and holds a
5-1-1 mark over the last seven encounters.
Calgary, however, has won two in a row and four of its last five tests in
Philly and the club enters Saturday's matchup having won six of its past seven
The Flames have been playing their best hockey of the season during their
recent 6-1-0 stretch. Calgary had a season-high five-game winning streak
halted when it opened a three-game road trip Tuesday in Montreal, but it
rebounded from that 2-0 loss to the Habs with Thursday's 4-2 victory over the
New York Islanders.
David Jones notched the game-winner with 5:32 left in the third to help the
Flames pick up the win at Nassau Coliseum. With the game tied 2-2 late in the
final frame, a shot from Matt Stajan hit off Jones.
Mikael Backlund then buried an empty-netter in the closing seconds to account
for the final margin.
Sean Monahan and Dennis Wideman each scored once, while Reto Berra registered
28 saves for Calgary, which snapped a four-game road losing streak and is now
10-14-4 as the guest this season.
"Reto was simply outstanding," Calgary head coach Bob Hartley said of his
netminder. "He was the guy that kept us in the game and gave us a chance to
Despite its recent hot play, the Flames enter Saturday 13 points out of the
last playoff spot in the West.
Calgary's first game after the Olympic break is a home game on Feb. 27 against
02/08 10:21:36 ET