Game 3 - Stopping the Red Hot Wings
The Calgary Flames face off against the up-and-coming Detroit Red Wings today at 5:30pm mountain time. The Red Wings are yet to lose in regulation with a 2-0-1 record including a 7-6 overtime loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning. Let’s take a look at the lines.
Stopping the hot hand
The Flames will be tasked with shutting down one of the hottest lines in the NHL in Bertuzzi-Larkin-Raymond. Tyler Bertuzzi in particular has caught fire with five goals on eight shots and an assist on top of that in just three games. His absurd 62.5% shot is obviously unsustainable, but still a threat tonight. To add to this, all but one of his points were earned during 5v5 play.
Kylington back in
Kylington gets a game on what will be coined the Babysitter Pairing™ — Tanev has been covering for Nikita Zadorov’s lapses so far on the second pairing, but tonight it will be Kylington who gets to make a case for himself playing with the Flames’ best defender.
Monahan finds a new home
As pointed out yesterday, Sean Monahan has been moved to what some would argue is the fourth line. With a poor showing against the Ducks (1 shot, -1, 4:37 powerplay time, 44% faceoff percentage) — this may be out of necessity. He hasn’t been skating well since his hit from behind collision with Zack Kassian. He has shown stubbornness in terms of going onto IR in the past.
New look shut down line
It will be interesting to see how the line of Coleman-Backlund-Pitlick performs. All three players have played a shutdown role in the past. Pitlick’s offensive production doesn’t wow anyone, but he was a quintessential contributor to the Coyotes’ shutdown line of Crouse-Dvorak-Pitlick. His injury issues seem to be carrying over from last year as he played one period in the preseason before going onto IR. This new line’s potential chemistry as well as Pitlick’s health will be something to watch.
Enjoy the game,
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