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STONE CLOSE TO RETURNING TO LINEUP

The Flames defenceman took part in a full practice on Thursday

by AARON VICKERS @AAVickers / CalgaryFlames.com

Michael Stone, perhaps, played it a little coy.

And Stone, absent from the Calgary Flames lineup for the past three games while tending to an upper-body injury, was ready for the line of questioning. 

How are you feeling?

"I feel pretty good," started Stone. "Better than before."

Are you limited at all in anything you're doing?

"I don't think so. We gave it a pretty good test out there."

Is there another test you have to pass?

"I'm not sure. I'll let you know. We'll see.

"I'm feeling pretty confident in how things have come along, so … I'm not really sure what that means but so far, so good."

Stone, acquired from the Arizona Coyotes on Feb. 20, was injured in the third period of Calgary's 5-0 win against the Montreal Canadiens one week ago. The defenceman hasn't played since, but has resumed practicing in full force with the Flames.

He isn't far from a return to the lineup, according to coach Glen Gulutzan.

In fact, Stone is close enough, Gulutzan said, that he's a candidate to suit up when the Flames host the Dallas Stars at Scotiabank Saddledome on Friday (7 p.m.; SNW, SN960). 

"He's real close," Gulutzan said. "He's had two days of battle now and a practice now in full. I'll talk to our docs here shortly and see where he's at. But I'm sure he's getting real close.

"I think if he has a good skate tomorrow he'd be a probable guy to go, but I have to check today to see how everything went on the ice."

Stone, who said he hasn't had much fun as a spectator, suggested a similar timeline.

But he also cautioned against returning too soon. 

"I would like to get back as soon as possible," said Stone, who has one goal and three assists in eight games since moving to Calgary. 

"I think everybody would say the same thing. Whether that's tomorrow or whether that's down the road, I'll find out. I'm not the doctor. It is my body, but … I don't know. I don't want to put myself in a position where it could be that and they don't want to put me into a position to end up (back out).

"We'll have another discussion here and go from there."

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