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At the Rink: Flames at Sharks

by Eric Gilmore

SAN JOSE -- San Jose Sharks forward Tommy Wingels was activated from injured reserve and will be in the lineup against the Calgary Flames at SAP Center on Monday.

Wingels missed seven games after breaking his left hand on Jan. 19 against the New Jersey Devils and having surgery.

"I feel good," Wingels said. "I feel like I can play. I feel confident with the injury being gone, in the past now. So I'll be excited to get back and try to contribute to the team."

Wingels leads San Jose with 174 hits and coach Todd McLellan said the Sharks have missed his physical play.

"He plays in straight lines," McLellan said. "He plays through people rather than around. Sacrifices his body for his teammates a lot ... You need that type of ingredient in your lineup on a nightly basis to have success. It's just something that's a little bit different. And, of course, his ability to score now is a big part of his game as well."

Wingels, who has 11 goals and 14 assists in 47 games, will skate on a new-look third line with left wing Tomas Hertl and rookie center Chris Tierney, who was promoted from the fourth line.

"Whenever you're playing with players that are that good, it's fun," Tierney said. "It's exciting to be able to play with them. Hopefully we can have a good night."

The Sharks will be without top defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic for the second straight game. He went on injured reserve Sunday with an upper-body injury. Scott Hannan will fill in for Vlasic again and skate with Brent Burns. The Sharks have been without Justin Braun, a top-four defenseman, since he broke his left hand against the Devils.

"Other guys have to step up and contribute," Sharks defenseman Matt Tennyson said. "We've been through that before this year. We know what to do."

Flames forward Curtis Glencross will return to the lineup after missing nine games with a hip injury.

"I think that [Glencross] is certainly one of the best around the blue paint, finding loose pucks, creating goals," Flames coach Bob Hartley said. "He's a big part of our team. He's an assistant captain, he's a leader. It's not only what he brings on the ice. It's also what he brings off the ice."

Glencross, who has eight goals and 18 assists in 44 games, will skate on the third line with center Matt Stajan and Mason Raymond.

"I'm excited," Glencross said. "Came to the rink yesterday with [Stajan] and [Raymond]. Matt and I have always had chemistry. During the last lockout, Mason was in Calgary with us. We skated all together there.

"Mason is playing really well for us lately too. I'm excited that he's got lots of confidence right now with the puck and he's making plays. [Stajan] is just an all-round good player. He's good in the D zone. He seems like he always knows where you are. When you have that kind of chemistry ... you tend to have some success."

The Flames will be without forward Brandon Bollig, who will miss the game because of an illness. Bollig did not travel with the Flames to San Jose on Sunday and was scheduled to fly Monday to Los Angeles, where Calgary will play the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday.

The Flames have won three of the first four games against the Sharks going into the finale of their season series.

San Jose (28-19-7) is in second place in the Pacific Division with 63 points, but Calgary (29-21-3) is two points behind and owns the second wild-card spot in the Western Conference.

"The boys are having fun with this situation," Hartley said. "I think we put ourselves in the right situation. We're playing games that mean something."

Here are the projected lineups:


Johnny Gaudreau - Sean Monahan - Jiri Hudler

Lance Bouma - Mikael Backlund - David Jones

Curtis Glencross - Matt Stajan - Mason Raymond

Paul Byron - Josh Jooris - Joe Colborne

Mark Giordano - TJ Brodie

Kris Russell - Dennis Wideman

Raphael Diaz - Deryk Engelland

Jonas Hiller

Karri Ramo

Scratched: Corey Potter, David Wolf

Injured: Sam Bennett (shoulder surgery), Ladislav Smid (upper body), Brandon Bollig (illness)


Melker Karlsson - Joe Thornton - Joe Pavelski

Patrick Marleau - Logan Couture - Matt Nieto

Tomas Hertl - Chris Tierney - Tommy Wingels

Andrew Desjardins - James Sheppard - Tyler Kennedy

Scott Hannan - Brent Burns

Matt Irwin - Matt Tennyson

Brenden Dillon - Mirco Mueller

Antti Niemi

Alex Stalock

Scratched: John Scott, Barclay Goodrow, Dylan DeMelo

Injured: Raffi Torres (knee), Mike Brown (right leg), Justin Braun (left hand), Tye McGinn (upper body), Marc-Edouard Vlasic (upper body), Daniil Tarasov (undisclosed)

Status report: Wolf, according to Hartley, has healed from his injury and is available to play when needed. ... Hiller will make his eighth straight start. ... The Sharks placed Tarasov on injured reserve with an undisclosed injury. ... Kennedy returns to the lineup after being a healthy scratch for two games. ...Sheppard was dropped from the third to the fourth line.

Who's hot: Hertl had a season-high two goals and three points Saturday against the Carolina Hurricanes. ... Tierney has four points (1-3-4) in his past two games. ... Raymond has two goals in his past three games. ... Giordano leads all NHL defenseman with 43 points (11 goals, 32 assists).

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