The Colorado Avalanche are in Calgary for a matchup with a former division rival in the Flames. The Flames have 15 points, the Avs 16.
Colorado has been heavy on top-line scoring and goaltending in the early going of the season. They have ridden strong Semyon Varlamov performances between the pipes and a scoring explosion from Gabriel Landeskog, Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen who leads the NHL in scoring with 21 points.
The Avalanche will benefit from more of the same thing they’ve been doing all season, opportunistic offense and solid defense with outstanding goaltending. The MacLaRan line (what do you think?) seems unstoppable through the early season and needs to stay that way as the drop off to the second, third and fourth line production is significant.
The boys will have to be on top of their game tonight as Calgary comes in hot and right on the heels of Colorado in the Western Conference. A good start will go a long way as the Avalanche have tended to fade late.
The Avalanche have dropped 5-of-6 in Calgary, the Flames took the last meeting 3-2 at the Pepsi Center.
Here’s the details for Thursday night’s game:
Calgary Flames (7-5-1) vs. Colorado Avalanche (7-3-2) 7:00 PM MDT
ScotiaBank Saddledome – Calgary, Alberta
TV: Altitude, SN1
Radio: 92.5 Altitude Radio, SportsNet 960
Streaming: AltitudeNow (Subscription)
Favorite: Calgary (-130)
J.T. Compher (head) – out
Sven Andrighetto (lower body) – out
Tyson Jost (head) – out
Travis Hamonic (face) – out
Johnny Gaudreau (concussion) – probable
The Avalanche head directly to Vancouver for a matchup with the Canucks on Friday while the Flames welcome the Chicago Blackhawks on Saturday.