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ELLIOTT, STONE READY TO RETURN TO LINEUP

The Flames will get a couple of bodies out of the sick bay this evening

by TORIE PETERSON @ToriePeterson / CalgaryFlames.com

The sick bay is emptying out.

The Flames will get two players back in their lineup this evening when they host the Dallas Stars at 7:00 p.m. (SNW, SN960).

Brian Elliott will be back between the pipes after missing Wednesday's game due to illness.

"He's feeling a lot better from his flu. He had a practice yesterday, feels better today so he'll get the start tonight," head coach Glen Gulutzan confirmed.

In his last 15 games, Elliott holds a 13-1-1 record with a 1.93 GAA and .934 save percentage. He has won his last nine starts and was an integral part of the Flames' recent 10-game winning streak.

"Moose has been unbelievable for us over this last stretch," Sam Bennett said. "He will definitely be adding that extra confidence (tonight)."

On the blueline, Michael Stone has been cleared to play after missing the last three games with an upper body malady.

Originally thought to have long-term implications, Stone's injury proved to be very manageable. He hit the ice earlier this week and took part in a full practice on Thursday morning.

"Just him returning … it's a good sign," Gulutzan said. "We thought it would be a lot longer. Right from the get-go, after the first two days, we knew he was coming along quickly.

"He's put in a lot of work. The last three or four days, he's gotten some good work before practice and then during. We feel pretty confident in him coming in here now. He'll be ready to go."

With a handful of skates under his belt this week, Stone has plenty of chances to ensure his injury has adequately healed and can endure the rigours of a game.

"I'm ready to roll," he stated. "I feel good. I obviously still have little minor things but I think everybody does here, this time of year. Those are things you just play through.

"Once you get playing, just get back into the feel and it goes out of the back of your mind and you don't really think about it too much anymore. That's what I'm hoping happens."

In eight games with the Flames, Stone has one goal and four points. He has been a regular in the Flames' top-four rotation, playing alongside TJ Brodie since he was acquired from the Arizona Coyotes in late February.

He is pleased with how his season has turned around since joining the Flames, crediting the atmosphere around the team for having a positive influence on his game.

"When you're having fun, you're not thinking too much and just playing with confidence. That's what has definitely helped me," he explained. "Coming to a team that's winning hockey games elevates your play, even if you're not doing it yourself. Everyone's dragging you along and now I feel like I can be a good contributor to this team. That gives me confidence and that's why I'm having fun."

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