Calgary Flames Visit Florida Panthers: Game 32 Preview

Florida continues its four game homestand with a showdown tonight at BAC with the Calgary Flames.

Florida will be hosting the Calgary Flames at Bank Atlantic Centre tonight in the only meeting this season between the two clubs. Florida has gone a 6-2-5 home record this season while the Flames are 6-9-0 away from Calgary. Florida will be playing the second game of a four game homestand. They went to overtime before handing the New Jersey Devils a 3-2 shootout decision on Tuesday night, and go on the play the Carolina Hurricanes on Sunday afternoon before closing out the homestand on Tuesday night against the Phoenix Coyotes. The Flames are playing their second road game in Florida in as many nights, and are playing their third game of a four game road trip. They lost 2-1 to the Nashville Predators on Tuesday night, lost 5-4 in overtime to the Tampa Bay Lightning last night, and finish up against the Chicago Blackhawks on Sunday.

The Panthers shut out the Flames, 3-0 in Calgary the last time the two teams met, on October 14, 2010. Both teams left the matchup with 1-2-0 records. Radek Dvorak scored his first two goals of the season in the first period for Florida and Shawn Matthias added his seasons first goal in the third. Tomas Vokoun stopped all 27 shots in the shutout.

Panthers @ Flames 10/14/10 (via NHLVideo)

In Florida's last game, the Panthers lost to the New Jersey Devils, 3-2 in a shootout. Kris Versteeg scored his 14th and 15th goals of the season and Jose Theodore stopped 32 of 34 shots to get the Cats their point. It was Florida's third consecutive loss. Luckily, the Panthers managed to bring home a point in two of the three losses to retain their Southeast Division lead over the Winnepeg Jets by six points. 

Devils @ Panthers 12/13/11 (via NHLVideo)

The Flames played the Lightning in Tampa Bay last night, losing a 5-4 decision in overtime. Matt Stajan, Jarome Iginla, Rene Bourque and Olli Jokinen scored for the Flames and Mikka Kiprusoff allowed five goals on 34 shots in the loss.

Flames @ Lightning 12/15/11 (via NHLVideo)

Season Series: 0-0-0
All-Time Series: 8-8-6
Game Time: 7:30 EST


Standings

Florida Panthers: 16-9-6, 38 points, first SE Division, third Eastern Conference, eighth NHL, on pace for 101 points.

Calgary Flames: 14-14-3, 31 points, fourth Northwest Division, 11th Western Conference, 23rd NHL, on pace for 82 points.

Injuries:


Florida Panthers Injuries

Questionable

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Mark Cullen other-excused 12/14/2011
Erik Gudbranson undisclosed 12/14/2011

Out (IR / Out / Suspended / Physically unvailable)

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Marcel Goc concussion 11/17/2011
Scottie Upshall other-excused 11/11/2011

 

Calgary Flames Injuries

Probable

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Rene Bourque other-excused 12/15/2011

Out (IR / Out / Suspended / Physically unvailable)

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Brett Carson back 10/05/2011
Anton Babchuk hand 11/09/2011
Mark Giordano leg 11/28/2011
David Moss foot 11/13/2011
Henrik Karlsson knee 12/05/2011


Probable Starters

Goaltenders:

Jose Theodore (11-6-4) will get the start in goal for the Panthers tonight. Mikka Kiprusoff (14-11-1) gets most of the starts for Calgary, but was lit up last night in Tampa Bay. Henrik Karlsson (0-4-1) remains a possibility.

Forwards:

1. Fleischmann - Weiss - Versteeg

2. Bergenheim - Matthias - Kopecky

3. Sturm - Santorelli - Skille

4. Barch - Kennedy - Samuelsson

Defense:

1. Campbell - Garrison

2. Jovanovski - Gudbranson

3. Kulikov - Weaver

Common Thread:

Calgary center Olli Jokinen is fourth all-time with 567 games played in Florida. In seven seasons, he scored 188 goals and a Florida franchise record 231 assists and 419 points. He had a minus-58 rating and 607 penalty minutes.

Calgary defenseman Jay Bouwmeester played in 471 games over six seasons with the Panthers. He scored 53 goals and 150 assists with a minus-27 rating and 329 penalty minutes.

Team Milestones:

Ed Jovanovski skates in his 284th Florida game tonight, moving him into a tie for 19th all-time with Bryan Allen. His next goal will be his 32nd, which will move him into a tie for 32nd with Richard Zednik. His next assist will give him 58 with the Panthers, tying him with Paul Laus, in 30th.

Mike Santorelli's next goal will be number 25 as a Panther, moving him into a tie with Mike Van Ryn in 44th place all-time. 

Shawn Matthias' next goal will give him 21, moving him into a tie for 47th with Brett McLean.

Dmitry Kulikov's next assist will give him 51 for his career, moving him past Niklas Hagman into 38th place.  One more point for Kulikov will give him 63, moving him past Dave Gagner into 47th place.

Stephen Weiss is tied for second all-time with 229 assists, with Robert Svehla. Three more will move him past Olli Jokinen into first all-time.


Team Leaders:

Goals:

Kris Versteeg - 15

Tomas Fleischmann - 12

Stephen Weiss -11

Assists:

Brian Campbell -22

Stephen Weiss -20

Tomas Fleischmann, Kris Versteeg - 18

Points:

Kris Versteeg - 33

Stephen Weiss -31

Tomas Fleischmann - 30

Plus/Minus:

Stephen Weiss - plus-18

Tomas Fleischmann, Kris Versteeg  - plus-17

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