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No shot at sleep for excited Flames' rookies

by Aaron Vickers / Calgary Flames

I wouldn't bet on [sleeping]. I think I'll try to get some shut eye but I don't think it's going to happen.Corban Knight

CALGARY, AB -- Admittedly, Calgary Flames rookie Corban Knight isn't about to get a lost of rest when his head hits the pillow for his afternoon nap.

The 23-year-old will try to chase some Z's, but said he'll inevitably come up empty handed.

"I wouldn't bet on [sleeping]," Knight said. "I think I'll try to get some shut eye but I don't think it's going to happen."

Knight isn't alone in falling short on the napping end.

Counting sheep is going to help fellow rookie Emile Poirier rest up.

Poirier, selected 22nd overall just three months ago at the 2013 NHL Draft, is going to have about as much success at sleeping as Knight.

"I'll try. I'll try to have a nap. I don't know if I'm going to sleep but I'll try to make the same routine, change nothing."

The reason for the lack of shuteye? Both are slated to play in their first professional exhibition game Saturday against the Edmonton Oilers.

For Knight, the High River product who inked a pro deal with the Calgary Flames in July, is set to step on the ice at the Scotiabank Saddledome and play his first professional game in front of friends and family.

"The fact that I get to play my first NHL exhibition game in the Saddledome here in Calgary at home, it's pretty special," he said. "I think the crowd is going to be rocking tonight. I think it's very exciting."

Playing so close to home, Knight will have plenty of supporters in the crowd to push him on.

"I've got quite a few coming tonight, I think," he said. "It will be fun to play in front of some familiar faces."

Fortunately, he doesn't have to shell out too much dough to put friends and family in the seats.

"[The Flames] are hooking us up pretty good but I think I've got to foot the bill for a couple," he admitted. "I've got a pretty big crew coming."

Poirier isn't likely to match Knight's contingent coming to the game, but just because he's from Montreal and plays his junior with the Gatineau Olympiques doesn't make his debut experience any less exciting.

"I think more excited than nervous," he said. "I think it's just great to finally play here."

Meanwhile, it's old hat to a veteran like Mark Giordano, who is entering his eighth season as a member of the Flames.

"I'm going to sleep, yeah," he said with a laugh. "I'll get a couple hours in today, just try to relax a bit and hang out at home but I'll be good.

"I'll be able to nap."

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