The Calgary Flames know they need to play better at home this season if they're going to make the playoffs. Nobody is thinking about the postseason after their season-opening performance.
The Flames go for their 10th straight victory over the Los Angeles Kings in Alberta on Sunday night when they play their first game at the newly renamed Scotiabank Saddledome.
After averaging 27 home wins in the previous four seasons, the Flames (0-1-0) went 20-17-4 at Pengrowth Saddledome last year, posting their fewest victories on home ice since 2002-03 -- the last time the club missed the playoffs.
"We need to be a lot better at home in order to be a good team in the league," captain Jarome Iginla, who has eight goals and 11 assists in his last 11 home games against Los Angeles, told the Flames' official website. "To be a playoff team, you have to be good at home. Previous years we were -- last year was a really tough year at home. We've got to focus on the types of things that make it hard to play here as far as skating, being physical and taking pucks to the net."
Calgary, which has outscored the visiting Kings 36-15 since its last home loss in this matchup on Dec. 21, 2005, will also need to concentrate on improving its power-play and penalty-kill efforts. The Flames went 0 for 4 with the man advantage and yielded a pair of power-play goals and a short-handed score in Thursday's 4-0 loss at Edmonton.
Calgary scored six power-play goals during a 7-0-0 preseason.
"We didn't have a very good start at all," defenseman Robyn Regehr said. "We played to all of their strengths."
While Flames coach Brent Sutter is looking for his club to bounce back as it opens a three-game homestand, the Kings (1-0-0) will try to win their first two road games for the second straight season.
In a rematch of last season's Western Conference quarterfinals, Los Angeles won 2-1 in a shootout on Saturday at Vancouver to defeat the club that ended its first playoff appearance since 2001-02.
"The boys came in here with a bit of a chip on their shoulder just because of (last season)," said Jonathan Quick, who made 23 saves and stopped both shots in the tiebreaker. "But at the end of the day it's one game of 82 so take it for what it's worth."
Despite beating Roberto Luongo in the first round of the shootout, Kings center Anze Kopitar had a rough opener, losing a tooth and needing 18 stitches -- 15 on the outside of the lip and three more inside his mouth -- after getting a high stick in the face midway through the second period. He returned for the third.
"I had it in my mind I was going to come back," Kopitar said.
The 23-year-old Slovenian didn't miss any shifts in his last game in Calgary -- a 2-1 loss on Dec. 30 -- after getting rammed head-first into the boards by former Flames defenseman Dion Phaneuf.
That incident sparked a heated verbal exchange between Sutter and Kings coach Terry Murray.
Quick went 1-2-0 with a 2.68 goals-against average against Calgary in 2009-10.
Miikka Kiprusoff has a 1.67 GAA during the Flames' home winning streak in this matchup.
Calgary has won 17 of 22 overall versus Los Angeles, which last won its first two games in 2002-03.