The pre-season's gone from bad to worse in terms of results for the Flames. They've lost all three games, one in a shootout, and the latest was a 4-0 defeat Wednesday night in Vancouver. The clash was scoreless with less than 90 seconds remaining.
The Oilers are also coming off a loss in Vancouver, a 5-4 defeat that ended with a Brad Isbister goal with 2.5 seconds remaining in regulation. Edmonton opened the pre-season with wins over Florida and Toronto.
FLAMES -- C Craig Conroy "tweaked" his groin in Wednesday's game and didn't practice yesterday, according to head coach Mike Keenan.
"I told him to stay off because I knew it was going to be demanding," Keenan said. "He had an off-ice workout and we didn't want him to aggravate it by putting him through the paces we had today."
LW Brandon Prust (hip surgery) and G Brent Krahn (knee) are also out.
OILERS -- RW Anson Carter, in camp on a tryout, suffered a concussion in the pre-season and is on the shelf.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Keenan said Miikka Kiprusoff would start in goal but wouldn't divulge much else about his team's line-up for the game. Don't be surprised to see Jarome Iginla and Daymond Langkow on the ice.
Edmonton is expected to bring a team that includes G Dwayne Roloson, C Jarret Stoll, young forwards Rob Schremp, Andrew Cogliano and Robert Nilsson and free-agent acquisition D Sheldon Souray. F Dustin Penner isn't expected to play.
BATTLE OF ALBERTA DEBUT
Keenan is coaching in the Battle of Alberta for the first time but isn't getting overly excited about it in terms of the rivalry.
"There's so much to do in pre-season, in terms of evaluation, you can't be preoccupied with the opponent, with the exception I'm pleased that we're playing divisional teams like Vancouver and Edmonton. You know those are the people that will be your major opponents during the course of the season, so I want to see how the players react."