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Posted On Sunday, 12.29.2013 / 1:49 PM

By Aaron Vickers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Flames' Backlund questionable for Canucks

CALGARY -- Despite playing a season-high 22:51 in a 2-0 loss to the Edmonton Oilers on Friday, forward Mikael Backlund could be out of the lineup Sunday when the Calgary Flames host the Vancouver Canucks at Scotiabank Saddledome.

Backlund missed practice Saturday and skipped the morning skate Sunday with an undisclosed injury.

"Backlund's going to be a game-time decision," coach Bob Hartley said. "I talked to him and he feels that he could be in. There's no sense in putting him in this morning. You guys [media] and I will find out basically at the same time [if he can play]."

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Posted On Friday, 12.27.2013 / 2:48 PM

By Aaron Vickers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Flames' Stajan OK after knee-on-knee collision

CALGARY -- Calgary Flames center Matt Stajan couldn't dodge David Backes but he did dodge a bullet.

Stajan won't miss any time after a knee-on-knee collision with Backes during overtime of Calgary's 4-3 shootout victory against the St. Louis Blues on Monday.

"I feel OK," Stajan said. "I've taken a lot of hard hits here lately but the three days off, I think it did a lot. Luckily there was no serious ligament damage in any of the plays. It's just bruises and aches and pains that you recover with time. I'm excited to get back at it and hopefully heal up as we go here."

With one minute remaining in overtime, Stajan had the puck and was cutting across the Blues' blue line. Backes went in to deliver a blow to Stajan but caught him with a knee-on-knee hit instead. Backes was assessed a minor penalty on the play while Stajan immediately left the ice, slamming his stick against the boards before exiting.


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Posted On Monday, 12.23.2013 / 7:03 PM

By Aaron Vickers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Flames lose Glencross, Russell to injury

CALGARY -- Calgary Flames forward Curtis Glencross will miss the next eight weeks with a high ankle sprain and defenseman Kris Russell will be sidelined four-to-six weeks with a second-degree sprain of the MCL in his left knee.

Glencross hit Penguins rookie defenseman Olli Maatta into the end boards 37 seconds into the game and fell awkwardly with his left leg trapped under his body. He left the game and didn't return. The Flames placed Glencross on injured reserve Monday, a few hours before their game against the St. Louis Blues at Scotiabank Saddledome.

The 30-year-old had played six games since returning from a second-degree MCL sprain that kept him out of the lineup from Nov. 7-Dec. 10 -- a span of 15 games.

Russell was injured in the third period against the Penguins. Zach Sill fell on the 26-year-old defenseman after Flames rookie Sean Monahan gave the Pittsburgh forward a shove.

Russell, who is second in the NHL in blocked shots with 105, has averaged more than 23 minutes of ice time a game this season.

The Flames also announced forward Blair Jones will be out indefinitely with a meniscal tear and updated Dennis Wideman's status to week-to-week. Wideman has been sidelined since suffering broken hand in a 3-2 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks on Nov. 27.

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Posted On Monday, 12.23.2013 / 2:24 PM

By Aaron Vickers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Blues' Bouwmeester downplays return to Calgary

CALGARY -- Jay Bouwmeester's 800th career NHL game will have an added twist to it.

It will mark his return to Calgary.

Bouwmeester, who played 279 games during parts of four seasons with the Calgary Flames, is returning to the city for the first time since being traded to the St. Louis Blues in advance of the the 2012-13 trade deadline.

The 30-year-old didn't tip his hand to the significance of the game, which doubles as his 671st consecutive game.

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Posted On Thursday, 12.12.2013 / 5:18 PM

By Aaron Vickers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Hurricanes' Semin returns against Flames

CALGARY -- Alexander Semin is in the Carolina Hurricanes' lineup Thursday against the Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome.

Semin had missed the past 12 games after suffering a concussion in a 4-2 loss to the St. Louis Blues on Nov. 16. He was first on the Hurricanes in assists with six and his nine points were second when he sustained the injury.

Anton Khudobin, who has missed 26 games with an ankle injury, has also resumed skating with the team. Justin Peters is in goal for Carolina on Thursday.

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Posted On Tuesday, 12.10.2013 / 3:42 PM

By Aaron Vickers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Bruins place Eriksson on IR, recall Johnson

CALGARY -- The Boston Bruins have placed forward Loui Eriksson on injured reserve with a concussion and have recalled Nick Johnson from Providence of the American Hockey League.

Eriksson left the Bruins' game against the Pittsburgh Penguins after being hit by defenseman Brooks Orpik in the opening minute of the first period. Eriksson missed five games earlier this season due to a concussion.

"Some of the guys have texted him and had very limited contact with him right now," Bruins coach Claude Julien said. "It's really early in the concussion stage. You don't want too much stimulation and stuff like that. It's been done purposely. I'll reach out to him when my trainers tell me he's starting to turn the corner a little bit and I'll be able to reach out to him which I've done the last time as well."

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Posted On Friday, 12.06.2013 / 2:50 PM

By Aaron Vickers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Flames expect to face an angry Avalanche squad

CALGARY -- The Calgary Flames are expecting an ornery Colorado Avalanche club at Scotiabank Saddledome on Friday.

The Avalanche are set to square off here less than 24 hours after being on the wrong end of an 8-2 loss to the Edmonton Oilers.

"They'll probably be an [angry] group [Friday], I would think," Flames forward Mike Cammalleri said. "Generally after teams have an outing like that, they feel like they have something to prove to themselves, their coach, their fans, the League, everybody the next night."

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Posted On Wednesday, 12.04.2013 / 2:34 PM

By Aaron Vickers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Giordano to return to Flames' lineup

CALGARY -- Calgary's captain is set to return.

The Calgary Flames will have defenseman Mark Giordano back in the lineup when they host the Phoenix Coyotes at Scotiabank Saddledome on Wednesday.

"He'll be in the lineup," coach Bob Hartley said. "When you wear the 'C' not only are you a great player but you're a special person. Our best leader is coming back to our group and we're going to play him."

Giordano has missed the past 18 games with a broken ankle sustained in a 3-2 win against the Los Angeles Kings on Oct. 21. He had seven assists and nine points in eight games and was averaging more than 25 minutes of ice time per game before the injury.

The Flames went 5-11-2 in Giordano's absence.

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Posted On Wednesday, 11.27.2013 / 4:04 PM

By Aaron Vickers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Blackhawks goalie Raanta set for first NHL start

CALGARY -- Antti Raanta knew well in advance he'd be making his first career NHL start against the Calgary Flames on Wednesday, but that didn't stop the 24-year-old goalie from getting a good night's sleep.

It won't spoil his pregame nap either.

Told Tuesday he'd get the call against the Flames, Raanta has prepared for the start like the day was any other.

"It was like a normal day [Tuesday]," he said. "The night went good. Of course it's a big day for me. I don't want to start thinking too much that I start taking too much pressure. If I do that, I will see it on the scoreboard and that's not the plan, what I want to do.

"I'll try to get a good game day nap like a normal routine going on and not think about it too much because it's not going to go too well. I just have to be enjoying the moment and try to show everything what I have. This is a big day."

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Posted On Friday, 11.22.2013 / 3:38 PM

By Aaron Vickers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Jones excited for season debut with Flames

CALGARY -- The Calgary Flames are wasting no time seeing what they have in a rejuvenated Blair Jones.

Summoned from the Abbotsford Heat of the American Hockey League after the Flames dealt Tim Jackman to the Anaheim Ducks on Thursday, Jones is set to make his season debut for the Flames when they host the Florida Panthers at Scotiabank Saddledome.

"I'm pretty excited," Jones said. "We had a pretty good roll going in the American league and to get back up here and get back in the game, it's fun."

Jones failed to crack the Flames' roster out of training camp this season but recharged his career with the Heat, leading the team with 20 points in 16 games before being called up.

"The message I told myself is don't go and sulk, it's not going to do you any good, so just work hard and play to your capabilities and good things will happen," he said. "I never got down on myself. I always believed in myself. I'm excited to get back here and get in the action and help the team."

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Quote of the Day

[He's] real confident with the puck now, getting it off his stick quick and no second-guessing. We need that. He's such a good guy in the room. He works so hard. That's the big thing. For not a big man, he just fights for every puck and when he scores, the guys appreciate that even more.

— Winnipeg Jets coach Paul Maurice on Mathieu Perreault, who scored two goals in win against Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday