The Colorado Avalanche are coming to town tonight and are looking to keep their unbeaten road streak going. Though the Avs have lost both of their two home games, they remain unbeaten (6-0-0) on the road this season. This is in stark contrast to the Flames who have only won 2 games so far and sit at the bottom of the Northwest Division with only 5 points.
This is the first of six meetings this season between Calgary and Colorado. The Flames owned the Avalanche last season, winning five of their six games, including the 9-1 embarrassment on Valentines Day. But things are very different to start this season, as the Avalanche have had a fast start and now find themselves on top of the Northwest Division and in 2nd place in the Western Conference.
Young Colorado center Ryan O’Reilly has been the biggest offensive contributor for the Avs so far. He has 7 assists in his first 8 games, but has yet to find the back of the net. Right winger David Jones leads Colorado with 5 goals. Matt Duchene, Colorado’s 3rd overall pick in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, has been surprisingly quiet so far, so let’s hope he doesn’t choose tonight to light it up.
The Flames will be counting on contributions from Alex Tanguay, who has five points in his last five games, and from Jarome Iginla who has started to pick up his game after a very slow first 5 games. The Flames will definitely be looking to increase their scoring after a very lackluster start to the season.
Ex-Calgary Flames winger Chuck Kobasew will be returning to the ‘Dome again tonight. He was always a crowd-favourite when he wore the flaming C, but don’t expect any long-winded, “Chuuuuuuuuuck Kooooohhhh-basew” intros on the PA tonight. While I like old Chuckie, I don’t think the warm welcome will be extended beyond a friendly hello before the game. Once the puck drops, the division rivalry will heat up quickly and Kobasew will be one of many white jerseys standing in between the Flames and an easy win.