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It will be the netminder's first NHL start

by TORIE PETERSON @ToriePeterson /

DENVER - It is official.

David Rittich will get his first NHL start this evening when the Flames take on the Colorado Avalanche at 8:00 p.m. MT.

"Ritty's going to come in and play," head coach Glen Gulutzan confirmed. "All reports down there have been that he's been very good. We've got two guys who have been really playing well down there so we'll come in and see what he's got tonight in a back-to-back."

Rittich was recalled on Friday morning, joining the team in Dallas and backing up Mike Smith in the 6-4 setback to the Stars. In six games with the Stockton Heat this season, he has compiled a 5-1-0 record with a 2.17 GAA, a .931 save percentage and two shutouts. He has won his last four games, posting 30+ saves in three of those contests.

"We made sure we told him last night on the plane that he was going so he would get a full day to prepare, get his mind right," Gulutzan said.

"We know he's a battler, you can really tell that in practice, and it's a good opportunity for him to come in a game - both teams are back-to-back - and show us what he can do."

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