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The Calgary Flames are on a five-game losing streak.
The Minnesota Wild have won eight of their last nine games.
The Wild are 1-1-0 against the Flames this season.
Odds Taken from FanDuel Sportsbook.
27-23-13 (5th in Pacific Division)
36-21-6 (2nd in Central Division)
Tyler Toffoli (53)
Kirill Kaprizov (73)
Tyler Toffoli (25)
Kirill Kaprizov (39)
Elias Lindholm (34)
Mats Zuccarello (38)
Mikael Backlund (19)
Jared Spurgeon (25)
Nazem Kadri (3.37)
Shots (Per Game)
Kirill Kaprizov (3.87)
The Calgary Flames will travel to St. Paul to face the Minnesota Wild for the third and final time this season. These teams faced each other in their previous game, and the Wild shut out the Flames 3-0.
The Flames are on a five-game losing streak and out of the playoff picture. However, there is still time for them to turn it around. Calgary is six points out of the second Wild Card spot and can make the Playoffs if they go on a winning streak. On the other side, the Wild are in second place in the Central Division with 78 points. They will make the Playoffs and are only three points away from the first-place Dallas Stars.
The Flames are going through one of their toughest stretches of the season right now. They have lost their previous five games and only scored eight goals in that time. This is concerning for obvious reasons but also because their offense is usually fairly consistent. If they do not turn their offense around this game, they will be in for a long night.
The Flames are seeing productive seasons from Tyler Toffoli, Elias Lindholm, Nazem Kadri, Mikael Backlund, and Jonathan Huberdeau. None of these players are stars, but they each have at least 40 points and 24 assists. When these players are on their A-game, Calgary is hard to beat.
The Flames have looked to Jacob Markstrom as their starter in net this season. However, Markstrom has not played too well this year and has an .890 save percentage.
The Wild are having a strong season but have had offensive struggles all season long. On the defensive end, they are dominant, but offensively, they score less than 2.8 goals per game. Minnesota often scores two goals a game. They can not only depend on their defense and need their offense to improve in the final 18 games of the season.
The Wild are led by Kirill Kaprizov, Mats Zuccarello, and Joel Eriksson Ek. These three have been consistent all season long and each have at least 20 goals and 49 points.
Marc-Andre Fleury will likely get the start in net for the Wild. Fleury is in the back half of his career and sometimes struggles but is coming off a game where he only gave up one goal.
I have to pick the Wild to win this matchup. They are on a four-game winning streak, and their defense will dominate the Flames. Minnesota should have no problem winning this game. Bet on the Wild.
The Flames are not expected to win but can win with strong defense and goaltending.
The Flames have been outscored by nine combined goals in their previous five games. This is partially because their offense has been slow but also because their defense has been poor. The Flames’ defensemen must flip the script and play tough defense this game.
The Flames did not make any goaltender trades at the Trade Deadline and will stick to David Markstrom and Dan Vladar for the rest of the season. Both have been performing poorly, but one will need to step up in this game and put on a show.
The Wild are the favorites but can improve their chances if they shoot 35+ times and draw penalties.
The Wild may have shut out the Flames in their previous game, but their offense is usually slow. They must rev up their offense and can do so by increasing their shot output. Minnesota averages 31.3 shots per game but should take at least 35 shots today. If they do, they may score an additional goal.
The Wild have a decent power play unit and convert 22.7% of their opportunities. However, they have not scored a power-play goal since February 19. That is a major problem and must end this game. The Wild must get this power-play unit on the ice at least three times and score at least once. If Minnesota scores with a man advantage, the Wild will emerge victorious.
Troy Stecher was traded to the Calgary Flames from the Arizona Coyotes at the Trade Deadline. This was a smart move by Calgary, as they give up 3.06 goals per game. Stecher is not on the first line, but he will play significant minutes. He must quickly prove his worth to Calgary and can do so by playing strong defense.
Matt Boldy does not receive too much credit for his impressive offense play. The winger has 17 goals and 25 assists in 63 games. He is no Kirill Kaprizov but is a dangerous player when on the ice.
Boldy is coming off a one-goal, one-assist game against the Flames. He must take the momentum from that game and score at least once this game.
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What - Calgary Flames vs Minnesota Wild
Where - Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, Minnesota
When - Tuesday, March 7, 8:00 PM EST
How to Watch - NHLPP, ESPN+
Max Heering graduated from the University of Kansas Sport Management program in May 2020. Max follows and writes about the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, MLS, college football, and college basketball. In his free time, you can catch Max draining threes on the basketball court. Email: [email protected]More info on Max Heering
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