Preview: Columbus at Calgary
When: 9:00 PM ET, Friday, February 5, 2016
Where: Scotiabank Saddledome, Calgary, Alberta
The Calgary Flames look to put together consecutive victories for the first time in a month when they wrap up a three-game homestand against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Friday. Calgary halted a three-game slide with a triumph over Carolina on Wednesday and aims for its first winning streak since capturing back-to-back contests Jan. 2 and 5.
All-Star Johnny Gaudreau ended his three-game goal-scoring drought against the Hurricanes and hopes to tally in consecutive contests for the first time since following a hat trick versus Winnipeg on Dec. 22 with a two-goal effort against Edmonton five days later. Columbus aims to conclude its four-game road trip with a winning record after escaping Vancouver with a 2-1 shootout victory Thursday. Scott Hartnell enters Friday’s contest with a four-game point streak after netting a third-period goal to overtake All-Star Brandon Saad (35) for the team lead in scoring with 36 points. Calgary will be attempting to complete a sweep of the two-game season series after posting a 4-2 triumph at Columbus on Jan. 21.
TV: 9 p.m. ET, FSN Ohio (Columbus), Sportsnet West (Calgary)
ABOUT THE BLUE JACKETS (20-28-5): Hartnell is one goal behind Saad (19) for the team lead but tops the club with eight power-play tallies — his total from last season. The 33-year-old is looking to reach double digits in man-advantage goals for the first time since scoring 16 in 2011-12 with Philadelphia. Other than a home-and-home series against Montreal during which he scored three times, Saad has gone 11 games without a tally.
ABOUT THE FLAMES (22-24-3): Calgary hopes to have TJ Brodie in the lineup against the Blue Jackets after the defenseman left Wednesday’s game with a lower-body injury. The likelihood of the 25-year-old playing is small as he did not participate in Thursday’s practice. Sean Monahan is coming off a four-point performance against Carolina after needing the previous 16 games to record the same amount of points.
1. Flames D Jakub Nakladal could make his NHL debut Friday after being recalled from Stockton of the American Hockey League two days earlier.
2. Columbus D Seth Jones has recorded six assists in 12 games since being acquired from Nashville.
3. Calgary G Karri Ramo is expected to get the start Friday.
PREDICTION: Flames 4, Blue Jackets 1