Sharks-Flames Preview

Associated Press  |  Last updated March 13, 2012
Ten points separated the Calgary Flames from the San Jose Sharks at the beginning of February, though Calgary's recent surge has coincided with San Jose's swoon to close the gap. The Flames host the Sharks in a crucial Western Conference matchup Tuesday night with both teams looking to get back into the playoff picture. Calgary (32-25-12) has won three straight games including Sunday's 4-3 victory over Minnesota, and has earned at least a point in 15 of 18 contests since Feb. 3. The Flames are currently 10th in the West, two points behind eighth-place Colorado. San Jose, meanwhile, has gone 5-11-3 since Feb. 3, dropping out of first place in the Pacific Division and all the way down to ninth in the conference, one point ahead of Calgary. The Sharks (34-25-9) were able to halt a five-game losing streak with a 3-2 win at Edmonton on Monday, but the concern of missing the playoffs for the first time since 2003 remains. Calgary coach Brent Sutter said he's aware of how the other teams in the crowded playoff chase have performed recently, though he said his club needs to keep the focus on itself. "The only thing you can do is worry about yourselves and take care of what you need to do," Sutter said. "You will get some help along the way because teams do play each other, but your focus has to be yourself and not get caught up in where you are in the standings right now." A regulation victory over the Sharks would not only move the Flames - who haven't won a playoff series since reaching the Stanley Cup finals in 2004 - into a tie for one of the final postseason spots, but also would put San Jose in their rear view mirror for the time being. Curtis Glencross has been a major reason for Calgary's surge, scoring a goal for the seventh straight game Sunday. That streak is the longest in the NHL this season, and he also has three assists in that stretch. "He's making the best of the opportunities he's getting," Sutter said. "He's contributing offensively, but he's doing other things for us too that are very important. He's been a solid all-around player for us." Logan Couture helped provide a much-needed spark for San Jose on Monday, scoring the tiebreaking goal in the third period. Joe Thornton added an assist for the Sharks, who had lost eight of their previous nine road games. "We needed this really bad," Thornton said. "We're struggling right now and to come in here and get a big win, every game is so important for us. The playoffs have already started for us. It was just a huge two points for us. "Hopefully this gives some guys some confidence." Couture scored and Thornton added two assists in the most recent meeting with the Flames on Jan. 8 at San Jose, but Olli Jokinen's hat trick and Jarome Iginla's goal and assist helped Calgary win, ending a five-game skid in the series. Iginla and Jokinen also scored Sunday, and Iginla has six goals and five assists during a six-game point streak. Including postseason, Thornton has only three assists in his last eight games at Calgary.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Eddie Lacy defends Mike McCarthy for weight loss comments

Red Sox nearly had serious catcher emergency in loss to Tigers

Ohio State DL Dylan Thompson ineligible for season

Roger Federer will miss Olympics, U.S. Open with knee injury

Seahawks extend Pete Carroll through 2019

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

LSU kicker Colby Delahoussaye releases first statement following car crash

Report: Brock Osweiler could have made more money staying with Broncos

Andrew Luck: Feels `as good as I've ever felt` for training camp

Amar'e Stoudemire announces retirement after signing one-day contract with Knicks

Report: Gregory failed multiple drug tests since suspension

Olympian Abby Johnston: Worst thing about Olympic village is no Pokemon

WATCH: Inside the Nike SNKRS BOX in SF for Golden Air Celebration

Report: Paul Pierce to return to Clippers

Jimbo Fisher: You come to FSU to win national championships

Andre Johnson worked out for Tennessee Titans

Shattenkirk for Krejci trade rumor still floating around

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman denies link to C.T.E.

Michael Vick: Cam Newton can’t beat me in 40-yard dash

WATCH: Five other uniforms Chris Sale should cut up

Odell Beckham Jr. says Giants will play in Super Bowl LI

Iowa researchers say they can optimize Monday Night Football ratings with scheduling

Terrelle Pryor can visit Ohio State as five-year ban comes to a close

Rudy Gay admits to having ‘no idea’ about what the Kings are doing

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

WATCH: Inside the Nike SNKRS BOX in SF for Golden Air Celebration

WATCH: Five other uniforms Chris Sale should cut up

QUIZ: Name every Olympic event in which the USA has never won a gold medal

Five U.S. Olympians favored to win multiple gold medals

WATCH: What teams should join the Big 12?

One Gotta Go: Do NBA players really love NBA2K?

One Gotta Go: NBA players hate Facebook too

One Gotta Go: NBA players settle the fast food beef

One Gotta Go: NBA players make tough choices on their favorite rappers

One Gotta Go: NBA Summer League is not about that Game of Thrones life

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker