7:00 PM EST
No way I can kick off any preview of this game without mentioning the barn burner the Calgary Flames played against the Chicago Blackhawks last night.
If you missed it.. if you haven't already heard about it... the Flames jumped out to a 5-0 lead mid-way through the first period...
Game over right?
I mean the Blackhawks have never came back from a 5-0 deficit in their history.. and this history dates back to 1926!!
Whelp history was made last night as they stormed back in the 2nd with 4 goals and then notched another in the 3rd to tie it up. Brent Seabrook re-wrote the Chicago history books when he scored the OT winner.
What a game.... unless you're a Flames fan.
The question now is what kind of team will the Jackets face tonight? A pissed off and embarrassed Flame's squad or a deflated and tired one?
Through 5 games the Flames haven't had trouble scoring. In fact they are tied with the Rangers for most goals scored in the entire league with 24. Jarome Iginla is the engine but he has a nice supporting cast -- especially from their blueline with guys like Phaneuf and Bouwmeester launching bombs from the blueline. Oddly enough though it's Rene Bourque, not Iginla, that leads this team in points with 8 (4 & 4). Let's hope Iginla doesn't get hot tonight.
No surprise but Rick Nash. He's got 2 & 4 for 6. The Jackets are in the bottom half of the league tied with a whole bunch of squads with 12 goals for. Not a whole lot generated the past couple of games despite getting a win against Phoenix. A lot of guys need to get it goin.
I like the Jackets forwards better than the Flames but it's the offense the Flames generate from their blueline that separate these two teams.
On paper you'd think the Calgary blueline would blow the Jackets out of the water. The problem is they've given up 23 goals which is good for 1st in the West and 2nd in the entire league and defense in this league isn't just about the defensemen.
The Jackets on the other hand have only given up 10 goals which is 2nd best in the West and 4th best in the entire league.
Bottom line here is the Jackets are getting great team defensive play. Everyone is contributing from the goalie on out.
Mase back between the pipes after getting pulled in a tough night against San Jose. It looks like Kiprusoff will go again for the Flames.
What's interesting about these two goalies is that both are coming off rocky starts. I'm throwing the stats out as this one as both took major hits sadistically lately... This one is all about who can/will bounce back the best?
The matchup of the night. The league's best PP (Flames) versus the league's best PK (Jackets).
May the best man (up or down) win.
This is the Jackets first game at home in over a week. Can they take advantage of it?
Also as mentioned earlier, how will the Flames bounce back after such a deflating loss? Will they look to take it out on the Jackets? If so, will the Jackets be ready?
Couple of notes.
If you're down in the AD be sure to stop by the R and represent Columbus to our friends up north on RDS.
If you can't make it down the Jackets have lifted the blackout on CI (HUGE GREEN LIGHT!) and it's a free preview -- so check out the Flames broadcast.
No surprise but Nikita Filatov has been healthy scratched from this game.