SAN JOSE, California (Ticker) -- Fresh off a thrilling victory,
the San Jose Sharks host the Calgary Flames on Saturday in a
rematch of the 2004 Western Conference Finals.
In a conference that has been dominated by Detroit, Colorado and
Dallas for most of the last decade, San Jose and Calgary became
a pair of surprising conference finalists when they engaged in
a six-game series that ultimately was won by the Flames.
Calgary won all three of its road games in the series to advance
to its first Stanley Cup Final since 1989. The Flames
eventually lost to the Tampa Bay Lightning in seven games.
This season, both teams have gotten off to sluggish starts. The
Sharks at least have won two straight games following a
four-game winless stretch. They are coming off a dramatic
triumph vs. Los Angeles on Friday as Jonathan Cheechoo scored
the game-winner with 3.7 seconds left.
Rookie Nolan Schaefer made 21 saves to pick up the victory in
his first career start for the Sharks, who are currently playing
without starting goaltender Evgeni Nabokov (right shoulder
injury) and backup Vesa Toskala (groin strain).
Calgary is 1-3-0 on its current five-game road trip, which ends
Saturday. The Flames, who have scored only seven goals on their
road swing, dropped a 3-2 decision at Phoenix on Thursday.
Jarome Iginla and defenseman Andrew Ferrence scored power-play
goals in the loss.
The Flames still are just 10-for-82 on the power play this
season. The Sharks aren't faring much better, having converted
just 9-of-69 chances with the man advantage.