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Face-offs improving

The Isles beat the Stars in the face-off circle today by a 33-21 margin.  Their 61.1% success rate was their highest this season. The Isles ...

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

A rare trip to Calgary

The Isles conclude their swing through Western Canada with their first game in Calgary in nearly 6 years. On January 15 2002, the Isles defeated the Flames 3-1 at the Saddledome, ending a 6-game losing streak in Calgary that dated back to 1992.

The teams last met on January 12, 2006 at the Coliseum. In the first game for interim coach Brad Shaw, the Isles defeated their relocated expansion cousins 3-2. Mark Parrish scored the winning goal for the Isles. The game featured two fights against Flame tough guy Chris Simon.

The two wins mentioned above are the only ones that the Isles have had in their last 12 games against the Flames (2-10-0). Seven different men coached the Isles over that 12 game stretch, and Nolan will make it eight coaches in the last 13 games against Calgary.

The Isles have scored only 27 goals in their last 15 games against Calgary (1.8 per game) and haven't scored four in any game since a 6-2 win on January 7 1994.

Of course, the Flames and Islanders began their history together, on October 7, 1972 at the Coliseum. Morris Stefaniw and Ed Westfall were the first to score for their respective teams. Westfall would go on to score 105 goals for the Isles (tied with Benoit Hogue for 22nd in club history) while Stefaniw, who is celebrating his 60th birthday on Thursday (really), would never score another NHL goal. The Flames won the game 3-2 (Billy Harris had the other Islander goal.)

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