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Monahan surging after slow start

The pivot has points in three straight games

by Aaron Vickers @AAVickers / CalgaryFlames.com

CALGARY, AB -- Not the easiest conversation to have.

Calgary Flames coach Glen Gulutzan on one end. Slumping Sean Monahan on the other.

"To be honest," started Gulutzan about his tête-à-tête earlier in the week, "I said, 'I'm well within my right to take you out of the lineup, but I believe in you and I want you to go onto the fourth line and I want you to concentrate on your defensive game and your battles and all your little things and I want you to work there.'"

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Team Red captures Flames SuperSkills event

Mikael Backlund won fastest skater and hardest shot to help Team Red win four of five challenges at the Flames SuperSkills event

Calgary Flames @NHLFlames

The Calgary Flames hosted a SuperSkills event at the Scotiabank Saddledome on Saturday afternoon. 

The event featured five skill challenges:

  • Fastest Skater
  • Relay Challenge
  • King of the Shootout
  • Shooting Accuracy
  • Hardest Shot

The Flames were split up into two teams; Team Red and Team White. Team Red came out on top, winning the fastest skater (Mikael Backlund), Relay Challenge, King of the Shootout and Hardest Shot (Mikael Backlund). Team White were the winners of the Shot Accuracy challenge (Alex Chiasson).

Below are the full results of the Flames SuperSkills event:

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Johnson's time at Alaska-Fairbanks hugely beneficial

Dating back to his time with the Alaska-Fairbanks Nanooks, Chad Johnson has approached the game the same way and it has prepared him for the NHL

by George Johnson @GeorgejohnsonCH / CalgaryFlames.com

One practice. Maybe 70 minutes in duration. A full eight years, a half-dozen NHL stops and 114 big-league starts later.

Chad Johnson delivered so much goodness during that winter of 2008-09, 190 kilometres south of the Arctic Circle.

He glowed, he shimmered, more brightly than the iconic Northern Lights tourists flocked to gaze at overhead.

An Original Six-stingy 1.66 GAA. An equally eye-catching .940 save percentage.

And what, then, has stuck with him, has served him so well from that season which the foundation for a pro path that has led him here, to his hometown?

One poor practice.

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Flames players predict SuperSkills winners

In some good-natured fun, the Flames made some predictions ahead of SuperSkills on Saturday

by Aaron Vickers @AAVickers / CalgaryFlames.com

CALGARY, AB -- The Calgary Flames are ready to showcase their skills.

Flames players will take to the ice in competition amongst teammates in SuperSkills presented by Sport Chek on Saturday afternoon at Scotiabank Saddledome. 

Teammates, including injured forwards Johnny Gaudreau and Lance Bouma, will battle for skills titles in five different events, including fastest skater and hardest shot, presented by Tim Hortons, shooting accuracy, presented by Ticketmaster, king of the shootout, presented by Pizza 73, and a puck control relay challenge.

Flames players have already placed their bets on the winners. With some good-natured ribbing involved, of course.

"Is Johnny in it?" asked forward Troy Brouwer about the accuracy contest. "Does he have to break the targets or does he just have to hit them?

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Flames rounding into form after win over Wild

Calgary finding structure in their game as they continue to climb in the Western Conference standings

by George Johnson @GeorgejohnsonCH / CalgaryFlames.com

CALGARY, AB -- If it's art you're after, try the Prado in Madrid or MOMA in Manhattan.

"They're hardly ever pretty, these games,'' agreed goaltender Chad Johnson of facing the Minnesota Wild. "Kinda like playing New Jersey.

"It's all about patience. All about not getting too excited, too eager, and end up making a mistake that costs you.

"They thrive on that.

"They give you shots but they don't give up good looks. You have to work for everything.

"To be able to play with a team like that, play a similar game as they do, play tight, to keep going no matter what … with our group, those types of games are important."

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Monahan's shootout winner gives Flames win over Wild

The Flames moved into a playoff spot with their second win over the Minnesota Wild this season

by Jason Johnson @Jay__Jo / CalgaryFlames.com

CALGARY, AB -- Sean Monahan scored the shootout-winning goal to lift the Calgary Flames (12-13-2) to a 3-2 win over the Minnesota Wild (11-8-4) at the Scotiabank Saddledome on Friday.

Kris Versteeg also scored in the shootout while Chad Johnson stopped Nino Niederreiter and Charlie Coyle. Jason Pominville scored the lone shootout goal for the Wild.

Monahan out-waited Devan Dubnyk and snapped his patented wrister low on the glove side for the decisive marker.

"Another win on home ice, that's the biggest thing," Monahan said. "[Johnson] stood on his head again for us, made some big saves for us in the shootout and the third period and kept us in the game.

"It's a lot of credit to him and we've got to build some momentum here at home."

The Flames had a full two-minute power play to start the overtime session but couldn't capitalize.

Their best chance came when Dougie Hamilton threw the puck out front to Sam Bennett, who had a wide open net but the puck was blocked by a sprawling Jared Spurgeon to preserve the tie.

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Bouma return getting closer

Flames forward nearing return after being sidelined with upper body injury since Nov. 5

by Jason Johnson @Jay__Jo / CalgaryFlames.com

CALGARY, AB -- It's good news on the injury front for Lance Bouma.

The Flames forward has been skating with the team for the past few days while he continues to rehab an upper body ailment and work himself back into game shape.

I'm feeling good. Obviously, it's not quite there yet but it's getting closer and closer. We're still ahead of schedule so hopefully, we can continue down this path.

Bouma left the game on Nov. 5 in Los Angeles and hasn't played since. He's been out of the lineup for the past 14 games but is confident he can get back soon.

"I feel pretty good with it. It's not there yet but every day it's getting better and better. 
"I'll just keep working hard and work hard in the gym and try to get that strength back and we will be back in no time."

The 26-year-old has one assist in 13 games this season.

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Prospect Of The Month - Adam Fox

The Harvard defenceman averaged over a point per game in November

by Torie Peterson @ToriePeterson / CalgaryFlames.com

Craig Conroy knows what it is like to advance throughout your hockey career and enter into a rookie season, unsure of what awaits you at that level.

He's been there, done that.

From his time with Clarkson College, to making his American Hockey League debut with the Fredericton Canadiens and skating in his first NHL game with the Montreal Canadiens, he has a clear understanding of what rookies go through on and off the ice.

So, watching Harvard defenceman Adam Fox burst onto the scene in the NCAA's ECAC conference, he understands exactly what kind of achievement it is to be so dominant as a true freshman.

"To be able to go in and be over a point a game already, as a defenceman … wow," Conroy told CalgaryFlames.com "He has 11 points in nine games, which is pretty amazing. And he has points in seven of those nine games. He's consistent.

"He's playing his game, already. There's no feeling out period, no nervousness."

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Flames to host Sport Chek Super Skills on Saturday

Join us as Flames players take to the ice for the ultimate competition amongst teammates of speed, accuracy and skill

by Calgary Flames Staff / CalgaryFlames.com

CALGARY, AB -- The Calgary Flames are proud to host Super Skills presented by Sport Chek tomorrow afternoon at the Scotiabank Saddledome. All Calgary Flames players will be taking part including Lance Bouma and Johnny Gaudreau, with all proceeds from the event benefitting the Calgary Flames Foundation.

Doors open at 11:30 AM. The Flames will hold an open practice at 11:30 AM and the Skills Competition will start at 1:00 PM.

Players will compete for skill titles in the following categories:

- Pizza 73 "King of the Shootout"

- Puck Control Relay

- Ticketmaster Accuracy Shooting

- Tim Hortons Fastest Skater

- Tim Hortons Hardest Shot

Tickets are still available HERE. Please note seating is general admission, first come, first serve.

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Projected Lineup - Flames vs. Wild

The Flames and Wild's projected lineups for tonight's game

by Torie Peterson @ToriePeterson / CalgaryFlames.com

CALGARY, AB -- The Calgary Flames will likely ice the same lineup they utilized against the Toronto Maple Leafs when they take on the Minnesota Wild this evening at 7:00 PM MT.

Forward Hunter Shinkaruk and defenceman Brett Kulak are expected to be healthy scratches.

Here are the Flames and Wild's projected lineups:

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