Game 6 Preview: Caps at Calgary Flames

Posted by Dave Nichols | Monday, October 20, 2008 | , , , , | 0 comments »

The Washington Capitals (3-1-1) start an old-fashioned, three-game west coast swing Tuesday night at the Pengrowth Saddledome against coach Darryl Sutter's Calgary Flames (1-3-1) at 9:30 pm EST.

Five games into the 2008-2009 campaign, the Caps have been equal parts juggernaut and enigma. They have looked dominant at times (Vancouver, third period at Pittsburgh), and have looked lethargic at times (Atlanta, New Jersey). Sitting at 3-1-1 with seven points in the Southeast Division is a solid start, but coach Bruce Boudreau has to be looking to a little more overall consistency and better scoring opportunities for MVP Alex Ovechkin, who has just three points in five games.

LW Alexander Semin continues his torrid start though, adding two more goals against New Jersey to raise his team leading scoring to 10 points. D Mike Green kicked one in on a 5-on-3 power play as well, and he's second on the team with 6 points and a +5.

The team hopes to get Donald Brasher back for the Calgary game, as he and D Tom Poti, who's been nursing a strained groin, both made the road trip. The team also recalled D Tyler Sloan from Hershey to make his NHL debut. Sloan, 27, is a slick skating 6'3" blue-liner that made effort and result his calling card in Hershey.

Coach Bruce Boudreau will have Jose Theodore between the pipes against the Flames.

Calgary has had its troubles so far this season, having won just one of their first five games, and enter this one having lost its last two. The Flames have been outscored 14-22. G Mikka Kiprusoff, embattled much of last season, began a new six-year, $35 million deal this season and has been between the pipes for all four Flames losses this season, to the tune of a 4.37 goals against average and save percentage of just .851.

On offense, RW Todd Bertuzzi has five of the team's 14 goals and C Daymond Langkow is the only skater for Calgary with a positive plus/minus rating through five games. Perennial all-star Jarome Iginla has had a rough start, going 1-2-3 with a -5 in five games.


CAPS: LW Alexander Semin (6-4-10, +6); D Mike Green (4-2-6, +5); C Michael Nylander (2-4-6, +3)

FLAMES: C Daymond Langkow (1-5-6, +1); RW Todd Bertuzzi (5-0-5, -3); LW Michael Cammalleri (1-4-5, -2)


CAPS: LW Alex Ovechkin (2-1-3, +3); C Nicklas Backstrom (0-1-1, +1); RW Chris Clark (0-1-1, -1)

FLAMES: RW Jarome Iginla (1-2-3, -5); D Adrian Aucoin (1-0-1, -5); G Mikka Kiprusoff (1-3-1, 4.37, .851)


CAPS: D Tom Poti (groin-DTD); LW Donald Brashear (hand-DTD); LW Viktor Kozlov (knee-OUT)

FLAMES: D Rhett Warriner (shoulder-IR)