HOW ALBERTA ANOTHER WIN: This is the third of five meetings with Calgary this season, and the first in Alberta. The Flames took the first two contests, both at STAPLES Center, 3-2 on October 21, and 2-1 on November 30. The remainder of the season series with Calgary will be played at Scotiabank Saddledome, a building the Kings haven’t played in, in 371 days.
TO EXPLORE ALBERTA: The Kings will be seeing the Flames’ Scotiabank Saddledome quite often in their final 22 games this season; they’re scheduled for three visits to Calgary’s barn if you include tonight. The Kings had lost 10 consecutive games in Calgary over a five-season span from March 29, 2006 – October 10, 2012, but have been victorious in their previous four visits, dating back to February 5, 2011. Can the Kings extend their winning ways in Calgary tonight?
WELCOMING ORTIO: This is the Flames’ first game back from the Olympic break. Their projected starting goalie, Joni Ortio, who was Calgary’s sixth-round (#171 overall) selection in the 2009 Entry Draft, will be making his NHL debut tonight against the Kings. Ortio’s been the AHL’s top rookie goaltender this season, racking up a 20-6 record with a 2.22 GAA and a .926 SV% in 28 games with the Abbotsford Heat.
THE HEART’S HERE: In a game that looked all but over for the Kings late in the second period Wednesday night in Colorado, they rebounded with four unanswered goals to edge the Avalanche 6-4 in their first game back from the Olympic break.
Call it a solid impression.
“We could’ve packed it in easily and blamed it on the Olympic break, ‘OK, it’s the first game back,” Anze Kopitar told Jon Rosen of LA Kings Insider. “Chalk it up with a couple of excuses, but we didn’t get down. We believed and we were playing hard for each other, and at the end of the day, the results were good for us.”
Call it a good look.
Can they carry it to Calgary?
THE LAST TIME AROUND: The Kings last skated at the Scotiabank Saddledome one year ago last Thursday, racking up a 3-1 win against the Flames on February 20, 2013, extending their win streak in Calgary’s home confines to four games.
Dustin Brown opened the scoring for the Kings, Trevor Lewis followed up with the game-winner, and Jeff Carter sealed the night’s situation with a third-period tally.
Can the Kings continue their string of success in the ‘Heart of The New West’?
LEWIS IN THE NEW(S) WEST
WE’RE DOING IT LIVE: Catch KINGS LIVE on FOX SPORTS WEST at 6:00, followed with the return of Bob and Jim on the live play-by-play call from Scotiabank Saddledome at 6:30 PT.