NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Friday, October 9th
(All times eastern)
Dallas Stars (0-0-2) at Calgary Flames (4-0-0), 9 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Calgary Flames hope to continue their red-hot start to
the season when they welcome the Dallas Stars for tonight's battle at the
The Flames and new head coach Brent Sutter have the best record in the league
at 4-0-0. Nashville is the only other unbeaten squad left in the NHL at 2-0-0.
Calgary's latest victory came in dramatic fashion Thursday night in Edmonton.
Olli Jokinen scored the decisive goal in the shootout, as the Flames downed
the rival Oilers by a 4-3 score at Rexall Place.
The only other time the Flames won four straight games to start a season was
when they captured their first-ever Pacific Division title back in 1993-94.
Edmonton's Sam Gagner went first in the extra segment and had his offering
stopped. Calgary's Nigel Dawes then skated in, faked left and fired a goal
over Nikolai Khabibulin's glove hand. Patrick O'Sullivan then beat Flames
goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff.
Jokinen skated in towards the left side of the goal and managed to squeeze the
puck between the left post and Khabibulin's skate. Kiprusoff then denied Ales
Hemsky to end the game.
Rene Bourque had a goal and two assists for the Flames. Daymond Langkow and
Dawes also scored in regulation, while Kiprusoff stopped 25 shots.
Calgary had an excellent 27-10-4 record as the host last year and is already
out to fast start at home with two wins in as many games at the Saddledome.
The Flames will next embark on a two-game road trip, which begins Monday in
Chicago and ends the following night in Columbus.
The Stars will get another shot at picking up their first win of the year
tonight after gaining a point in a pair of shootout losses to begin the
Dallas was handed a 3-2 loss by visiting Nashville to open the season last
Saturday and then was dealt a 5-4 setback Tuesday night in Edmonton. Hemsky
scored in the shootout phase to lift the Oilers at Rexall Place.
Brenden Morrow tallied two goals and an assist for the Stars and Marty Turco
made 20 saves in defeat. James Neal had the other regulation goal for Dallas,
but his attempt to extend the shootout clanked off the left post.
The Stars are expected to go with Alex Auld in net for the first time this
season. Auld will give Turco a breather, but expect Dallas to use its No. 1
netminder for Sunday's test in Vancouver.
The Stars center Mike Modano was out with a rib injury, while Dallas right
wing Jere Lehtinen was sidelined with a hip/groin injury. Lehtinen is
questionable for tonight's test, while Modano is expected to be out for at
least a week.
Tonight marks the middle segment of a three-game road trip for the Stars, who
were just 16-19-6 as the visiting club last year. Dallas will complete the
swing Sunday night in Vancouver.
The Stars and Flames split four meetings in 2008-09 and the club's have each
won six games in the last 12 matchups between the clubs. Dallas has dropped
four of its last seven games in Calgary.
10/09 10:52:16 ET