Preview: Blackhawks at Flames
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[November 20, 2014]
Calgary earned plenty of
early-season attention on the strength of a solid road record, but the
Flames are showing everyone that they are a decent team in their own
arena, too. Calgary looks to improve to 4-0-0 on its five-game homestand
Thursday evening as it welcomes the Chicago Blackhawks to town.
Defenseman Dennis Wideman had a pair of goals and Sean Monahan converted
in the shootout as the Flames upended Anaheim 4-3 Tuesday.
While Calgary makes its mark at home, the Blackhawks are looking
for consistently strong efforts on the road, having alternated wins
and losses over their last five games away from Chicago. The
Blackhawks were at their best in their previous contest, riding four
third-period goals to a 6-2 victory over the Dallas Stars. Thursday
marks the opener of a six-game road trip that will also take Chicago
to Edmonton, Vancouver, Colorado, Anaheim and Los Angeles.
TV: 9 p.m. ET, CSN-CH (Chicago), SNF (Calgary)
ABOUT THE BLACKHAWKS (10-7-1): Chicago's annual circus road trip is
often greeted with disdain by players and coaches, though at least
one skater is looking on the bright side. "The travel (stinks),
obviously," forward Andrew Shaw said earlier in the week. "But being
on the road with the guys, it's kind of nice. You get to know the
guys a little more." The Blackhawks will look to continue their
success on the penalty kill, where they enter the grueling trek with
the league's most efficient unit at 92.3 percent.
ABOUT THE FLAMES (12-6-2): In addition to being much improved on the
road, Calgary has made a point of saving the best for last more than
any other team in the league. The Flames have scored an NHL-best 27
third-period goals this season, including three against Anaheim that
helped erase a two-goal deficit and lead to the eventual shootout
triumph. "It's a cool feeling," Flames forward Lance Bouma told the
Calgary Sun. "Guys really enjoy these moments and want to be in
these moments and have done a good job this year."
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1. Chicago will play just two of its next 12 games at the United
2. The Blackhawks rank fifth in the league with 21 third-period
3. Three of the last four meetings have gone to overtime, with the
Flames winning each time.
PREDICTION: Flames 3, Blackhawks 2
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