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Gulutzan excited to get behind bench

Glen Gulutzan is looking forward to running his bench again for the first time in three years

by Aaron Vickers @AAVickers /

CALGARY, AB -- Turns out training camp isn't just for the players.
Calgary Flames coach Glen Gulutzan is looking to get back into the swing of things, too.
"I don't think I've put enough games in this league as a head coach," Gulutzan said. "I think I've got a hundred or so to watch from the stands.
"I'll make sure I'm on the bench as much as I can be."

Gulutzan will start in Calgary while assistant Dave Cameron tackles the road duties as Monday's two simultaneous split-squad games against the Edmonton Oilers kicks off pre-season action for the Flames. Gulutzan will then join the team on the road at the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday for Calgary's third pre-season tilt. 
The 45-year-old Gulutzan was hired by the Flames in June after serving three years as an assistant coach with the Vancouver Canucks. Prior to his tour with the Canucks, he was the head coach of the Dallas Stars for the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons -- Gulutzan's first experience manning an NHL bench.
He also led the Texas Stars of the American Hockey League from 2009-11, and the Las Vegas Wranglers, then Calgary's ECHL affiliate, from 2003-09.
"It's training for me," he said. "It's been three years since I've ran my own bench. I did for 14 years before that and a couple in the NHL. It's good for me to get back on the bench and change lines and be in the heat of the game.
"Certainly I'm excited about it, too."
Gulutzan is also excited about the way his club is rounding into form through three skates at Scotiabank Saddledome.
But he wasn't after two.
"If you'd have asked me [Saturday], I wasn't as happy yesterday with maybe my own performance as far as how practice didn't flow as much as I wanted to," he said. "But when I looked at the whole three days now after today, it meshed real well. I'm happy today.
"Coming off the ice today I like how the three days went. We covered a lot of ground.
"We still have ground to cover everyday, but I like our start. 
"I like it."
His voice might disagree, though.
The raspy tone tells enough of a coach working hard to keep everyone on-track as he implements his system on his campers. 
"I feel like I'm at Hudson Bay hockey school and I'm on Friday afternoon sessions," he said.


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