Sharks vs. Flames: San Jose looks to snap five-game winless streak

The road trip continues as the Sharks travel to Alberta to take on the Flames, looking to end their five-game losing streak.

They've still managed to pick up standings points, and probably should have won two of the games in overtime, but the Sharks are technically still mired in a season-worst five-game winless streak after beginning the year 10-1-1. While it seems like we've seen this movie before, given the team's seven-game losing streak that came on the heels of their year-opening seven-game winning streak last season, there are important differences. For one, the Sharks have continued to put the puck in the net, averaging 2.6 goals per game over these five losses whereas the offense had completely dried up last season. Spending less time in their own end and getting better goaltending from 2013 Vezina finalist Antti Niemi (as well as the war room in Toronto laying off their mayor's crack pipe) will be key to turning some of the shootout losses San Jose has suffered over the past week and change into overtime or regulation wins.

Tonight they'll continue their five-game road swing through Western Canada and Chicago by taking on the Flames in Calgary. After an unexpectedly great start to the season, the Flames have also considerably cooled down as of late, dropping five of their past six and seven of their past nine games. It probably isn't a coincidence that Calgary's swoon has paralleled a scoring slump by rookie sensation Sean Monahan, who has just two points in his last nine games as he's fallen well behind the Sharks' Tomas Hertl for the rookie scoring lead. With the Flames' number one defenseman in Mark Giordano still injured and the inexperienced Reto Berra in net, the circumstances seem ideal for the Sharks to halt their winless skid tonight in Alberta. But we said that before the games against Buffalo and Winnipeg, too, so it's hard to feel confident about San Jose's chances against any opponent at this point.

San Jose Sharks


Calgary Flames
10-2-5, 25 points
6-9-2, 14 points
3rd in Pacific
6th in Pacific

6PM PST | Scotiabank Saddledome | Calgary, Alberta
TV: CSNCA-HD | Radio:, 98.5 KFOX
Know Your Enemy: Flames Nation, Matchsticks & Gasoline

Projected Sharks Lineup

Tomas Hertl - Joe Thornton - Tommy Wingels
Matt Nieto - Logan Couture - Joe Pavelski
Marty Havlat - Patrick Marleau - Tyler Kennedy
James Sheppard - Andrew Desjardins - Mike Brown

Marc-Edouard Vlasic - Dan Boyle
Brad Stuart - Justin Braun
Scott Hannan - Jason Demers

Alex Stalock
Antti Niemi

Projected Flames Lineup

Mike Cammalleri - Mikael Backlund - Jiri Hudler
T.J. Galiardi - Matt Stajan - David Jones
Sven Baertschi - Sean Monahan - Lee Stempniak
Lance Bouma - Joe Colborne - Brian McGrattan

Kris Russell - Dennis Wideman
TJ Brodie - Chris Butler
Ladislav Smid - Derek Smith

Reto Berra
Karri Ramo