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At the Rink blog

Iginla, recharged Flames ready to chase playoff berth

Tuesday, 01.31.2012 / 2:26 PM

By Aaron Vickers - NHL.com Correspondent / At the Rink blog

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At the Rink blog
Iginla, recharged Flames ready to chase playoff berth
CALGARY -- It didn't take long for Calgary Flames forward Jarome Iginla to refocus after spending the All-Star break as a member of Team Chara.

Iginla and teammate Michael Cammalleri were the first two on the ice in preparation for the Detroit Red Wings tonight, firing one-timers, a tradition the two shared as teammates during Cammalleri's first stint with the Flames.

Needless to say, the captain is recharged and ready to lead the Flames to their first playoff berth since 2008-09 despite spending his break participating in the All-Star Game.

"Even though it's a few days, we have lots to do there, but at the same time mentally it's not that intense," Iginla said. "I'm excited to get back and get going. It's a nice break to get going for the stretch drive."

That's good news for Calgary coach Brent Sutter, whose team sits at 52 points on the season, putting the club in 11th in the Western Conference and three behind the eighth-place Minnesota Wild. The Dallas Stars and Phoenix Coyotes also have 52 points.

"I don't think it's any different for our team as any other team," Sutter said. "I think for all teams it's time for them mentally to take a break from the game and get re-energized and refreshed."

In other words, Sutter's Flames have to ignite the rest of the way in order to leapfrog into a playoff position.

"The reset button is pushed for everybody, and now everyone is on the same page as far as coming off the break," Sutter said.

Calgary's projected lineup tonight:

Alex Tanguay - Mikael Backlund - Jarome Iginla
Michael Cammalleri - Olli Jokinen - Blake Comeau
Lance Bouma - Blair Jones - Lee Stempniak
Tom Kostopoulos - Matt Stajan - Tim Jackman

Chris Butler - Jay Bouwmeester
Scott Hannan - Mark Giordano
TJ Brodie - Cory Sarich

Miikka Kiprusoff
Leland Irving
Quote of the Day

We think that Randy is a very good coach. Our players think that Randy is a very good coach. We think that he's going to get the most out of this group. With the addition of the two assistants, a bit of a different dynamic, we're very comfortable that this is a quality coaching staff that's going to maximize the potential of this team.

— Maple Leafs GM Dave Nonis on head coach Randy Carlyle and his staff