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QUICK-STUDY JANKOWSKI PREPPING FOR SEASON

After a tremendous rookie campaign in Stockton, the forward is aiming to earn a spot in the Flames' lineup

by GEORGE JOHNSON @GJohnsonFlames / CalgaryFlames.com

Some tests, Mark Jankowski knows, can explore a young man's heart, x-ray his soul. 

That History of the Modern Middle East exam his senior year at Providence, as a for-instance.

"It was a requirement for my major,'' recalls the rangy centreman, involuntarily, almost imperceptibly recoiling at the memory. "And it was … tough. A tough class. History of the Modern Middle East. I mean, it even sounds tough.

"So I really had to focus, to buckle down, because I needed it to graduate.

"I remember the week leading up to writing it, I don't think I came out of my bedroom. Didn't get much sleep. I'm not sure I even ate.

"Just locked into my notes."

His current study habits are decidedly different. They involve every extra rep in the gym, each additional kilometre on the odometer while running, the pushing and prodding of his body to be bigger, faster, stronger, sharper.

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HUSKA'S HOCKEY CAREER COMES FULL CIRCLE

The Heat bench boss' experience as a player has aided him throughout his coaching career

by GEORGE JOHNSON @GJohnsonFlames / CalgaryFlames.com

The uncertainty. The frustration. The waiting. The wishing.

 And, yes, for a fleeting moment, at any rate, the joy.

Ryan Huska understands it all. He's lived it all.

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STAJAN SEES PLENTY OF UPSIDE IN FLAMES' 2017-18 ROSTER

'I think our team is in a great spot, I like the make-up of it ... I want to be part of something special.'

by GEORGE JOHNSON @GJohnsonFlames / CalgaryFlames.com

Posters plastered all over WinSport are advertising an upcoming I Love the '90s Tour concert, featuring yesteryear hit-makers such as Vanilla Ice and Salt-N-Pepa.

Matt Stajan's first NHL training camp doesn't stretch back quite that far, but …

"(Sidney) Crosby just turned 30,'' the versatile centreman is protesting, with mock severity, following a pick-up, hour-long on-ice stretch of the legs out at COP on Tuesday late morning.

"I'm 33.

"So I'm like: 'He's only three years younger than me …'

"Yeah, I've been around a while. But sometimes the way people talk you'd think I was 10 years older (than Crosby); that I was 40."

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THE BEAT GOES ON GALA SET FOR SEPT. 9

Proceeds from this year's Gala will support the vital work of the Libin Cardiovascular Institute's clinical research

by CALGARY FLAMES STAFF @NHLFlames / CalgaryFlames.com

The Libin Cardiovascular Institute of Alberta is hosting its fourth annual The Beat Goes On Gala on Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017 in the Palomino Room at the BMO Centre in Stampede Park.

As an entity of the University of Calgary and Alberta Health Services (Calgary), the Libin Institute is responsible for all cardiovascular science research, education and care delivery in Calgary.

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SUMMER SHOWCASE RECAP - 05.08.17

Adam Fox picked up five points in the final game at the 2017 World Junior Summer Showcase

by TORIE PETERSON @ToriePeterson / CalgaryFlames.com

Flames prospect Adam Fox closed out his tenure at the 2017 World Junior Summer Showcase in fine fashion, posting one goal and five points in a 7-5 USA win over Canada.

In five games at the tournament, the defenceman netted three goals and nine points. Fox, the Flames' third round pick in the 2016 NHL Draft, is expected to take on a top-pairing role for the Americans at the 2018 IIHF World Junior Championship.

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GILLIES READY FOR NEXT STEP

After getting his first full season of pro hockey under his belt, Jon Gillies has 'set the bar in a different position'

by GEORGE JOHNSON @GJohnsonFlames / CalgaryFlames.com

Trooping down the tunnel onto the ice at the Staples Centre on April 6th, Jon Gillies couldn't help but glance en route at the poster-sized images of Kobe Bryant, Magic Johnson and his idol Jonathan Quick on the walls, all toting iconic, title-tested silverware.

Readying to mark his NHL debut against the team of his growing-up dreams, the black-and-silver clad LA Kings, in front of the 18,230 SoCal crowd along with his nearest and dearest - parents, grandpa, other family - his thoughts naturally drifted back to where he'd been only 12 months earlier, how he'd reached this personal landmark night.

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SUMMER SHOWCASE RECAP - 04.08.17

Matthew Phillips and Adam Fox scored in their respective games on Friday

by TORIE PETERSON @ToriePeterson / CalgaryFlames.com

Flames prospect Matthew Phillips picked up his third goal in as many games at the World Junior Summer Showcase on Friday.

The winger scored Canada's seventh goal in a 7-4 win over fellow Calgary prospect Linus Lindstrom and Sweden. Phillips was credited with three shots in game while Lindstrom, who returned to action after missing Wednesday's game due to injury, had one shot.

Lindstrom, a forward, has one goal and two points in three games at the tournament.

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VALIMAKI TO CAPTAIN FINNISH WJC TEAM

The defenceman is slated to play a big role for Finland at this year's tournament

by TORIE PETERSON @ToriePeterson / CalgaryFlames.com

Flames' 2017 first round pick Juuso Valimaki is slated to play a big role for Finland at the 2018 IIHF World Junior Championship.

As per Adam Kimelman of NHL.com, Valimaki will captain this year's Finnish squad at the tournament, which runs Dec. 26 through Jan. 5 in Buffalo, N.Y.

"He has big-time leadership qualities," Finland coach Jussi Ahokas told Kimelman during the World Junior Summer Showcase in Plymouth, Mich. "He takes charge on the ice, defends well, also can make smart plays with the puck. The big thing is on the team he is a leader, and we need those kind of guys."

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