Handicapping marquee NHL games

By Andy MacNeil  () 

macneil

Montreal Canadiens at Calgary Flames (Friday, Saturday and Monday)

 

After two games in Edmonton, the Canadiens will travel a few hours south to Calgary and finish their season series against the Flames. The Canadiens have gone 2-4 against the Flames, and though they have two games in hand, only six points separate the teams in the standings — and that’s exactly what’s up for grabs in this three-game set. This might be as close as Calgary gets to the playoffs. The Flames will have only eight games left after this, and with their playoff chances on life support, they’ll have to run the table against the Canadiens or the door will likely slam shut on their season. The odds are definitely stacked against the Flames even though they’ve played well against Montreal.

 

This will all take place over four days. Both goaltenders, Calgary’s Jacob Markstrom and Montreal’s Carey Price, have failed to live up to expectations, but the latter has been shelved with a concussion, so we won’t see him. We’ll likely see Jake Allen start two of the three games, and that actually increases the Canadiens' chances of winning. There’s a good chance the Flames will have to turn to backup Louis Domingue during this stretch. If that’s the case, the Flames’ chances will drop. 

 

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