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Brodie sidelined, but Flames get positive news on injury front

by Jason Johnson / Calgary Flames

-- The Calgary Flames finished the 2014-15 season without one of their top blueliners and they'll have to do the same to the start the 2015-16 season.

Defenceman TJ Brodie suffered a broken bone in his right hand -- the fifth metacarpal -- after getting hit with a shot in the third period of a pre-season game against the Edmonton Oilers on Monday.

"He thinks it was maybe the knob of the stick pinched when the shot hit his hand," Flames general manager Brad Treliving said during a media availability at Scotiabank Saddledome on Wednesday. "It caught him in a bad spot. These things happen and the good news is, if something is going to happen, you have it happen at this time.

"It opens up an opportunity for someone to grab a hold of it and we move forward."

The good news for Flames fans is the 25-year-old won't require surgery to repair the break and his injury status is week-to-week.

"He’ll be out for now and we’ll take it week by week," Treliving said. "It’s not displaced. It will be one that won’t require surgery and we’ll get him on the mend as soon as possible."

With Ladislav Smid still sidelined following surgery on his neck in January, the Flames have a heated battle ongoing in training camp for the number six and seven spots on the blue line.

Treliving brought in Ryan Wilson, a veteran of 230 NHL contests with the Colorado Avalanche, Douglas Murray, who has 518 NHL games to his credit, and Aaron Johnson, who has 291 NHL games on his resume, on try-outs.

The Flames also have plenty of other suitors vying for an NHL job -- Jakub Nakladal, Kenney Morrison, Tyler Wotherspoon, and Brett Kulak, to name a few.

News on the injury front isn't all bad, though.

Smid's return to game action is still unclear but he's been cleared for light contact.

"Timetable isn’t different," Treliving said. "They’ve allowed him to get involved in some light bumping, but in terms of the full on game type stuff, he’s still got some time."

Josh Jooris, Joe Colborne and Paul Byron, all suffering from wrist ailments late last season, have been cleared to play. Both Jooris and Colborne are expected to play Thursday in Colorado.

Goaltender Jon Gillies, who has been on concussion protocol since Sept. 16, has been making strides towards a return.

"He’s been doing some individual stuff," Treliving said of Gillies. "If all things progress today, he’ll be doing some individual on-ice stuff. He’s been doing the progression, the bikes, the off-ice stuff and what not."

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