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Flames Today: 22.09.11

by Torie Peterson / Calgary Flames

Flames captain Jarome Iginla did not skate again on Thursday. He is still suffering from the back issues that have kept him off the ice since Saturday.

"Like I said earlier, I don't want him on the ice until he's 100 per cent," head coach Brent Sutter said after practice on Thursday. "He's getting close but there is no need for Jarome to be out there and aggravate anything.

"We need him to be obviously ready to go at the start of the regular season so we'll manage this right over the next few days. Hopefully we'll see where it's at over the next little bit, day-to-day. If he can get on the ice, he will. If not, then we'll give it another day."

On Tuesday night Calgary, it took rookie Greg Nemisz less than a minute to make his presence known. Just 47 seconds into the game, he sent a slap shot past Canucks goaltender Manny Legace and kickstarted his club's first period offensive burst.

It was Nemisz's first goal in Flames jersey and while he copped to be a bit excited about potting Calgary's first of five tallies against the Canucks, he happier with his overall performance.

"TK made a great pass out to the slot and I just kind of walked into it in the first shift.

For me, it's not about the (individual) results. I know when I'm playing well. I take pride in my work ethic and I try to do the little things right."

Playing with Kostopoulos and Olli Jokinen for the bulk of the game, Nemisz gleaned valuable knowlege from the veterans as the game wore on.

"Those guys are really easy to play with. They're talking all game and it just makes it a lot easier on a young guy like me."

This is the 21 year-old's second training camp with the Flames. He also attended the prospect camp a couple of weeks ago and played two games in the Young Stars tournament in Penticton. With these experiences behind him, he's been able to settle into camp and feel quite comfortable as he goes forward.

"The first couple games are always a little rough but I'm getting more comfortable as I go. I'm starting to feel a lot better," he said. "Especially physically, I feel a lot better this year coming into camp. It was great to get off to a good start."

The Flames had a recovery day on Wednesday and rookie Sven Baertschi made sure to utilize in a way that would benefit him later on during the week.

"Sleep," he laughed. "Get some rest and just relax. I didn't want to really do that much because it's a lot of practices and a lot of games the last couple of days and weeks. Just hanging out and relaxing. Skype with my family back home."

The tactic worked because during Thursday's skate, Baertschi didn't look like he had spent the past couple of weeks in training camp.

"I think I was fresh today at practice. It was a tough practice but at the end I felt right away in the skate that I could keep up with those guys. It's just about hard work. I feel like I had a good summer and I'm in pretty good shape."

The day off also allowed him to decompress mentally. With 19 players cut from the training camp roster on Wednesday afternoon, it would be easy for a rookie to become stressed out about when and if he'll be the next guy trimmed off the roster.

"I want to be relaxed. Anything can happen and you never know when they'll send back or if they want to keep for you awhile. It's their decision. You can make it hard for them playing good out there on the ice and practice well. Just enjoy the whole process."

Follow Torie Peterson on Twitter | @ToriePeterson

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