NHL

Flames in danger of series sweep against red hot Stars

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The Sports Network
3/14/2014 11:45:30 AM
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(SportsNetwork.com) - The Calgary Flames are 15 points out of a playoff spot in the West, but they showed they aren't a team to be taken lightly when they slammed the visiting Anaheim Ducks by a 7-2 score on Wednesday.

Although Anaheim has been struggling lately, the Ducks still entered Wednesday's game as the top team in the Pacific Division only to get routed by the Flames.

Mikael Backlund scored twice and added an assist to lead Calgary in the surprising blowout victory. Mark Giordano notched a goal and an assist, while Mike Cammalleri, T.J. Galiardi and Ladislav Smid each scored once to help the Flames halt a brief two-game slide.

Corban Knight capped the scoring with his first NHL goal and Joni Ortio backstopped the victory with 20 saves.

"I thought that we just matched their intensity right from the start," Calgary head coach Bob Hartley said. "We caught a couple of breaks that we deserved because we created them. Two shorthanded goals, a power play goal, it was pretty fun to watch our guys go."

The Dallas Stars, one point ahead of the Phoenix Coyotes for the second wild card spot in the Western Conference, also toppled the NHL-leading Ducks this week.

When the Stars and Flames collide Friday night at the American Airlines Center, Calgary aims to avoid a season series sweep while the Stars look for a fourth straight victory.

The Stars hope to win another one for Rich Peverley, who collapsed shortly after completing a shift in the first period of Monday's scheduled home game against Columbus.

That contest was ultimately postponed after Peverley was successfully treated for a "cardiac event" and sent to a local hospital.

The 31-year-old forward was released from the hospital on Wednesday when it was also announced Peverley will miss the rest of the season. Peverley had a procedure performed during the preseason to correct an irregular heartbeat and will undergo another operation to deal with the issue in the near future.

Peverley, who was acquired from Boston last summer in the trade that brought Tyler Seguin to Dallas, is fourth on the Stars this season with 30 points on seven goals and 23 assists.

With No. 1 netminder Kari Lehtonen sidelined with a head injury, Tim Thomas expects to start again on Friday. Thomas was acquired in a trade with Florida before the trade deadline and the 39-year-old veteran is 2-1-1 with a 1.72 goals against average in four career games against Calgary.

Dallas has won three straight and five of its last six home games and is 18-10-6 as the host this season.

Dallas has claimed three straight and six of the last nine meetings in this matchup overall and Calgary has dropped two in a row and four of five in Big D.

The Flames will try to halt a two-game road losing streak tonight in Dallas. Calgary is just 11-17-4 as the guest this season.

Joni Ortio (Photo: The Canadian Press)

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(Photo: The Canadian Press)
Flames (59PTS) at Stars (74PTS) - 830PM
DAL is 2-0-0 vs CGY this season, 12GF
DAL has won 2 straight at home vs CGY
DAL (32-23-10):
won 3 straight, 4 times this season, have not won 4 straight
won 3 straight, scoring 13G, 5/12 on PP
Jamie Benn (3G, 5A) 5 game PT streak
CGY (26-33-7):
scored 2 or fewer goals in 10 of the past 11 games
lost 2 straight on the road, 3GF, 0/6 on PP
Cammalleri (2G) has scored in back to back games
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