San Jose Sharks Aim To Snap Skid Against Flames


Losers of three straight games, the San Jose Sharks will look to add one to the win column when they face the Calgary Flames in a Pacific Division showdown tonight…

Setting the stage

The Flames are on a two-game win streak but sit at the bottom of the league standings with 22 points and a 10-14-2 record. They have a league-worst -29 goal differential with 94 goals surrendered through 26 games. Adding insult to injury, Calgary will be without defenseman Kris Russell tonight, according to Sportsnet’s Roger Millions.

Meanwhile, the Sharks skate into tonight’s tilt with an impressive 10-4 record on the road and, despite their recent struggles, a second-place rank in the division standings at 14-12. San Jose will welcome back the services of center Logan Couture this evening for the first time since the pivot broke his leg in mid-October, as reported by Kevin Kurz of CSN California.

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Season series

The Sharks defeated Calgary 5-2 in San Jose on Nov. 28 behind a rare two-point outing from defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic, who picked up a goal and an assist in the win. Also, it was the best game of the year for San Jose’s third as Tomas Hertl and Tommy Wingels each chipped in with a goal and an assist as well.

The teams will clash for just the second time tonight as the Sharks look to take the first two games to date.

Players to watch

Sharks: Logan Couture. Couture will center the second line in his first appearance since Oct. 13. The 26-year-old forward has only played in three games this season and struggled out of the gate, picking up just one point over that stretch. Couture is a key part of the Sharks’ offense after posting a career-high 67 points last season and will be relied upon to produce tonight.

Flames: Johnny Gaudreau. Gaudreau is a difference-maker night-in and night-out for the Flames. The second-year winger leads the team in scoring with 26 points and ranks eighth in the league in game-winning goals with three. Gaudreau tallied 64 points as a rookie in 2014-15 and is always a threat with the puck on his stick.

Keys to the Game

1. Continue Power Play Momentum

After struggling with the man advantage for the early part of the year, the Sharks have been on a roll with their power play of late. San Jose has scored a power play goal in five of their past six games, including two goals against the Flames in their earlier matchup and three last time out against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Going against the worst defensive and penalty killing unit in the NHL, the Sharks have a nice opportunity to continue their power play proficiency.

Next: Streaky Sharks Are At It Again


TV: CSN-California (Puck Drop @ 6:00 p.m.)

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