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Flames Game Day

Game Day: Flames Want Bite Of Rangers In Big Apple

Calgary Flames are taking on the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on Monday in their return to NHL action after the all-star break.



Dan Vladar will have to wait for his shot to snap the Calgary Flames' (24-17-9) franchise record goalie point streak, but the return of defenceman Chris Tanev looks like a real possibility for Monday's return to the ice against the New York Rangers (27-14-8) at Madison Square Garden. 

After a lengthy layoff with the Flames' bye week followed by the NHL all-star break, the team is looking to prove it's more like the one that beat the first-place Seattle Kraken 5-2 10 days ago than the one that fell in embarrassing fashion to the lowly Chicago Blackhawks — for a second time this season — at home the night before. 

Vladar stopped 28 shots in Seattle to tie the Calgary Flames franchise record with at least a point in 13 consecutive appearances (10-0-3). They're 3-1-0 in their last four games and locked with the Colorado Avalanche for the final wildcard spot in the Western Conference. But 32 games remain and they're still within striking distance of the Pacific Division lead. Of course, they'll need to start with some strong play on the road in New York, Detroit, Buffalo and Ottawa before their next home game on Feb. 16. 

"It's fun to be back together again. Excited to play again. It was a great break, but we're all ready to come back and have a strong push here," said the Calgary Flames' longest-serving member Mikael Backlund on Monday during a chat with Flames TV.

"It's a huge trip for us. We need to play really well right away here. When we go home, there will only be 28 games left. It's going to fly by — always does at the end. We've got to dig down here and have a really good last push here. It's going to be some fun hockey to play. Especially with where we're at, a little playoff hockey right away."

Jacob Markstrom will start and it looks like Jakob Pelletier is back with Nazem Kadri and Jonathan Huberdeau on the second line. Keep an eye on the rookie as he looks for his first NHL point. 

On the other side, the Rangers have a similar record as the Flames and went into the break on a positive note as well with a 4-1 win over the Vegas Golden Knights. They did the Flames a favour and moved to 2-0-1 in their last three games and 6-2-2 in their last 10. With their own backup goalie success story going on, Jaroslav Halak has won five consecutive starts. The 37-year-old has a .938 save percentage and 1.80 goals-against average going back to Dec. 17. 

Unlike Markstrom, who finished second in the Vezina voting but has struggled at times this season, last year's winner Igor Shesterkin has a 21-8-7 record, with a .918 save percentage and a 2.45 goals-against average.  

Calgary Flames projected lineup


Dillon Dube – Elias Lindholm – Tyler Toffoli

Jakob Pelletier – Nazem Kadri – Jonathan Huberdeau

Andrew Mangiapane – Mikael Backlund – Blake Coleman

Milan Lucic – Adam Ruzicka – Trevor Lewis


Noah Hanifin – Rasmus Andersson

MacKenzie Weegar – Chris Tanev

Nikita Zadorov – Michael Stone


Jacob Markstrom

New York Rangers projected lineup


Artemi Panarin – Mika Zibanejad – Jimmy Vesey

Chris Kreider – Vincent Trocheck – Barclay Goodrow

Alexis Lafreniere – Filip Chytil – Kaapo Kakko

Will Cuylle – Jake Leschyshyn – Sammy Blais


Ryan Lindgren – Adam Fox

K'Andre Miller – Jacob Trouba

Ben Harpur – Braden Schneider


Jaroslav Halak

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