The big story of the night is that Ladislav Smid will return to Edmonton, where he played for seven years before joining the Flames in November 2013. Smid admitted to Roger Millions, during an interview, that he’s “a little nervous” to play in Edmonton again, being a visitor instead of part of the home team.
I’ll admit, when Smid was first traded to Calgary, I wanted to dislike him – he came from the Oilers afterall, and I think it’s only natural for us Flames fans to question how well he would be able to transition onto the Flames team. As it turns out, Smid is a good defenseman and made himself comfortable in Calgary rather quickly. He proved himself to me with his gritty defense, willingness to sacrifice himself for the team, and his natural ability in front of the net. I like him more and more with each passing game. He’s powerful, instinctual, and does what it takes to block shots on the Flames net.
Reto Berra got the nod from Hartley today to start in net for the Flames tonight. It seems that a few people are questioning Hartley’s decision to start Berra, but I can see the logic. It’s a back-to-back weekend for the Flames as they took on the Colorado Avalanche last night and the Edmonton Oilers tonight. I think it’s a good idea to sit Ramo tonight because it will give Berra a chance to prove himself against the Oilers in hopes of giving him more experience and confidence for future games.
Perron has four goals and six points in only four games. Our defensive players will need to cover him at all costs. Taylor Hall got a hat trick against the Colorado Avalanche during their last game. Dubnyk will start in net tonight for the Oilers while Labarbera will be on the bench as backup.
In the Flames corner, it is unclear whether or not Colborne will be on the ice tonight, but he did travel to Edmonton with the team. McGrattan, Monahan, Wideman, Glencross, and Galiardi were out of the game last night and, seemingly, are still out of the line up for tonight’s game.
With a record of 10-18-2 for the Oilers and 10-14-4 for the Flames, statistically, this should be an evenly-matched game. Yet something tells me that the Flames will come out on top.
Puck drops at 8pm MT on CBC Hockey Night In Canada. Let’s see which one of our guys will get the HNIC towel tonight!