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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Sunday, January 18th (All times eastern)

Calgary Flames (27-13-4) at Colorado Avalanche (22-22-1), 8 p.m.

(Sports Network) - Winless against the Flames this year, the Avalanche will face the Northwest Division leader twice on their current eight-game homestand. The first of those two meetings takes place tonight, as Colorado hosts Calgary at the Pepsi Center.

Colorado is 13-9-0 at home this season and began its epic stand on Friday with a 3-2 loss to Edmonton. The eight straight games as the host is the second- longest residency in Colorado franchise history, behind only a nine-game stand in 2002. The Avs do have the benefit of the All-Star break during this run.

Tyler Arnason and T.J. Hensick scored versus the Oilers, as Colorado dropped its third straight game after winning three in a row. Ryan Smyth had a five- game point streak end (3 goals, 4 assists) and Andrew Raycroft allowed all three goals on 37 shots to take the loss.

Raycroft, who missed Colorado's previous game due to a calf injury, has now lost two straight starts after winning seven in a row. He is still 9-3-0 with a 2.73 goals against average this year.

Raycroft is 1-3-0 with a 4.09 GAA in his career versus Calgary, but has yet to face them this year. Instead, it was Peter Budaj who was in net for all four Avs setbacks to the Flames this season, posting a 3.05 GAA in that span.

Calgary has outscored Colorado 13-5 so far this year. The first three matchups took place in Calgary before the Flames notched a 1-0 win in Colorado on November 20, just their second win in the last eight meetings there.

The Avs will also host the Flames on February 2 in what will be the final meeting of the season between the clubs. Calgary leads the division with 58 points, while Colorado is last with 45 points.

Miikka Kiprusoff has started 42 of Calgary's 44 games this year and leads the NHL with 27 wins. He has notched two shutouts and a 1.25 GAA versus the Avs this year and is 16-10-3 with a tie, a 2.67 GAA and four shutouts versus them all-time.

Kiprusoff was tagged for four goals on 26 shots in Saturday's 4-3 loss to Phoenix, a setback that halted Calgary's seven-game home winning streak. Mike Cammalleri had two goals in defeat, giving him seven points (5g, 2a) over his last four games. He has a goal and four assists versus the Avs this year.

Matthew Lombardi also scored last night and Jarome Iginla notched two assists for the Flames, who lost for just the second time in their last 11 games overall. Todd Bertuzzi missed his fourth straight game due to a hip flexor.

Calgary has won four of its last five on the road, where it is 11-8-1 this year.

01/18 10:21:48 ET

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