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FAST FACTS - FLAMES @ LIGHTNING

Notes ahead of tonight's Flames vs. Lightning tilt in Tampa

by TORIE PETERSON @ToriePeterson / CalgaryFlames.com

LAST GO WITH THE LIGHTNING

Tonight's game is the final skate in the Flames-Lightning 2016-17 season series. The Bolts picked up a win in Calgary on Dec. 14, topping the Flames 6-3. Troy Brouwer, TJ Brodie and Micheal Ferland found the back of the net in the setback. In their 2015-16 series, the Flames and Lightning picked up 3-1 victories on home ice.

CAREER HIGHLIGHTS VS. TAMPA BAY

As a member of the Washington Capitals, Brouwer netted his first NHL hat trick against the Lightning on Jan. 13, 2012.

Brian Elliott posted his first NHL shutout against Tampa Bay on Mar. 29, 2009, as a member of the Ottawa Senators.

Deryk Engelland, as a member of the Pittsburgh Penguins, scored his first NHL goal against Tampa Bay on Nov. 12, 2010.

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PREVIEW - FLAMES @ LIGHTNING

The Flames make a stop in Tampa on Thursday, taking on the Lightning at 5:30 PM MT

by TORIE PETERSON @ToriePeterson / CalgaryFlames.com

FLAMES (30-26-4) VS. LIGHTNING (27-24-8)

BROADCAST: 5:30 PM MT; Sportsnet West (TV), Sportsnet 960 The FAN (radio)

SEASON SERIES: Tonight's match-up is the second and final game between the Flames and Tampa Bay Lightning in their 2016-17 season series. The Bolts took the opening contest by a score of 6-3 back on Dec. 14. Troy Brouwer, TJ Brodie and Micheal Ferland scored in the setback. The Lightning received goals from Brian Boyle (2), Braydon Coburn, Andrej Sustr, and Alex Killorn (2) while Ben Bishop made 19 saves on the 22 shots he faced.

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ON THE ROAD WITH RYAN LESLIE

Ryan Leslie blogs about the Flames' impromptu game of hoops with members of the Harlem Globetrotters

by RYAN LESLIE @ryanleslie73 / CalgaryFlames.com

Hockey and hoops.   

They go together like the Calgary Flames and the Harlem Globetrotters, both clubs in Tampa Bay currently for their respective games.   

But with the hardwood down for the basketball game at Amalie Arena, the Flames took to the court post-workout for a makeshift game of "bump."  

Some rapid-fire free throws followed up with some "respect the game" trash talk and even a diving save attempt by Matthew Tkachuk, where he cleared an entire row, yes, an entire row of courtside seats.

The game featured a little bit of everything. Everything but basketball talent. 

That was until the world- famous Globetrotters stepped onto the court and sports worlds collided. A few "stick to hockey" shots were fired and there was some showtime as you might expect. But in the end, it would come down to one of the 'Trotters taking on Brian Elliott in the final of a challenge.   

Now Elliott, whose basketball career started and ended in his childhood driveway, had had some earlier success against his own teammates but to represent the hockey world against someone who quite literally trots around the globe playing hoops? It was arguably one of the greatest challenges of the goalie's career.  

Now I'm not saying it was pretty but the seas outside that arena were stormy on this day and, fittingly, lightning must have struck. Because if I wasn't there to witness it myself, I wouldn't believe this tale either - but Elliott, ELLIOTT, ladies and gentlemen, walked off that court a champion. 

The Calgary Flames and the Harlem Globetrotters. Forever rivals.  

Video: Shooting hoops with world famous Harlem Globetrotters

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FERLAND'S STRONG PLAY LEADS TO ELEVATED ROLE

A promotion to the first line led to one of Micheal Ferland's best games of the season

by TORIE PETERSON @ToriePeterson / CalgaryFlames.com

Glen Gulutzan had one message for Micheal Ferland ahead of his promotion to the top line on Tuesday night.

Don't change a thing.

The Flames' bench boss had been impressed with the winger's tenacious play in recent weeks and had a hunch his north-south style of play would work well with Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan.

His instincts proved correct, with Ferland netting two goals in the 6-5 overtime win over the Nashville Predators on Tuesday.

"I like the way he was going. If you look at his games prior, he was at the net with some energy. He was making plays. He was physical. We saw the hit on Loui Eriksson (in Vancouver) and he was physical throughout his games.

"So he had a lot of little details in his game. I thought he had jump in his step, ever since he came back from the break. I thought he could give them a little energy. Obviously I didn't think he'd plot two right away but he has that ability. Hopefully he can keep it going."

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STITCHED UP BENNETT READY FOR THURSDAY'S GAME

After taking a high stick to the face in Nashville, the forward underwent a root canal and has 10 stitches

by TORIE PETERSON @ToriePeterson / CalgaryFlames.com

Sam Bennett's Wednesday got off to a rocky start.

After receiving 10 stitches following Tuesday's game in Nashville, the 20-year-old underwent a root canal in Tampa to remedy the damage caused by the high stick he took in the 6-5 overtime win over the Predators.

But, despite the swollen lip and stitches, he was in an upbeat mood following the team's meeting at Amalie Arena.

The reason?

He'll be ready to play tomorrow when the Flames take on the Tampa Bay Lightning at 5:30 PM MT (SNW, SN960).

"I'm alright," he grinned. "I'll be good for tomorrow.

"It doesn't feel too good right now but it's part of the game."

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GIORDANO OT HERO FOR FLAMES

Captain scores winner to cap off wild game in Nashville

by AARON VICKERS @aavickers / calgaryflames.com

NASHVILLE - The Flames are leaving Music City on a winning note.

Micheal Ferland and Mikael Backlund each had two goals, and Mark Giordano scored 43 seconds into overtime to complete a third-period rally and help Calgary to a 6-5 win against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena on Tuesday.

Video: CGY@NSH: Giordano banks in OT winner off a skate

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QUOTABLES - FLAMES @ PREDATORS

Quotes from this morning's media availability in Nashville

by TORIE PETERSON @ToriePeterson / CalgaryFlames.com

Glen Gulutzan on the Flames adding pieces before the NHL Trade Deadline:

"You can tell with the energy in there, there's a vibe. This is the first time in my coaching career that we've had it at the deadline. It's not like a huge shift for your team - it adds a little juice. I think most guys in our locker room would agree, there's a little bit of juice in their steps today. They know it's on. It's on. We're making a push and we're sitting in a playoff spot and we'd like to continue to push and see where else we can."

 Gulutzan on the Predators and the message sent after they fell to Nashville last month:

"We know this is a really good hockey team. They play hard. Our message was that we've got to play more than five minutes. We've got to come out here and be ready for a battle. This is a four-point game. We talked about certain things down the stretch that are important to our group and important for us to get into the playoffs. Four-point games against someone you're battling with is important. We'll be ready to play a harder game right from the start, we know they will (too)."

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STONE SET TO MAKE FLAMES DEBUT

The defenceman will be in the lineup tonight in Nashville

by TORIE PETERSON @ToriePeterson / CalgaryFlames.com

For the second straight game, the Flames will have a new face on their blueline.

Michael Stone, acquired on Monday from the Arizona Coyotes, is set to make his Flames debut this evening in Nashville. 

The 26-year-old will skate alongside Matt Bartkowski, who signed a two-year deal with the team last week, in tonight's game against the Predators.

"We think there's enough similiarity between the way we play and Phoenix (plays) and the way he played with Phoenix. There's some subtle differences in our game, which we're going through here but we wanted to get him right away," Glen Gulutzan confirmed after the morning skate at Bridgestone Arena.

"It does give you flexibility down the road with your pairings and it's just depth. It gives you some flexibility, it allows you to look at a few things. But right now, we just want to get him introduced to how we're going to play."

With Stone sliding into the rotation, Dennis Wideman and Jyrki Jokipakka will sit as healthy scratches. TJ Brodie will skate with Deryk Engelland and Mark Giordano and Dougie Hamilton will remained paired up.

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PROJECTED LINEUP - FLAMES @ PREDATORS

Calgary and Nashville's projected lineup for tonight's game

by TORIE PETERSON @ToriePeterson / CalgaryFlames.com

The Flames will have a new look on their blueline tonight when they face the Nashville Predators at 6:00 PM MT (SN1, SN960).

Defenceman Michael Stone, acquired on Monday from the Arizona Coyotes, will be in the lineup this evening, skating alongside Matt Bartkowski. Dennis Wideman and Jyrki Jokipakka will be healthy scratches on the backend.

Up front, Alex Chiasson is expected to return to the lineup. Freddie Hamilton will be a healthy scratch andGarnet Hathaway has been assigned to Stockton.

Here are tonight's projected lineups for Calgary and Nashville:

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FLAMES ASSIGN HATHAWAY TO STOCKTON

Hathaway has played 26 games with the Flames this season

by TORIE PETERSON @ToriePeterson / CalgaryFlames.com

The Calgary Flames announced today that they have assigned forward Garnet Hathaway to their AHL affiliate, the Stockton Heat.

Hathaway, a 2015 free agent signing, has played 26 games for the Flames this season and has five points (1G, 4A) and 44 PIMs. He has also skated in eight games for the Heat and has six points (3G, 3A) and eight PIMs.

GARNET HATHAWAY - RIGHT WING

BORN: Kennebunkport, ME  DATE: November 23, 1991

HEIGHT: 6'2" WEIGHT: 210 lbs.

SHOOTS: Right

ACQUIRED: Signed as a free agent on April 12, 2015

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