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Flames' Matthew Tkachuk: Pots game-winner
Tkachuk scored his 14th goal of the season in Saturday's 2-1 win over the Wild.
He fired home a deflected pass from James Neal midway through the third period, a tally that proved to be the game-winner. The 21-year-old now has 38 points in 33 games, and Tkachuk's breakout has given the Flames a strong offensive presence on their second line and helped fuel their rise to the top of the Pacific Division.... See More ... See Less
Flames' David Rittich: Tames Wild for 10th win
Rittich turned aside 34 of 35 shots in Saturday's 2-1 win over the Wild.
The 26-year-old continues to give the Flames a steady presence in net when called upon, allowing a single goal in two straight starts and more than three goals only once all season. Rittich now boasts a 10-3-1 record, 2.22 GAA and .925 save percentage through 17 games, and while Mike Smith (undisclosed) remains at the top of the depth chart, Calgary may begin to shift the workload more towards the younger netminder.... See More ... See Less
Flames' Mikael Backlund: Not quite ready to play
Despite practicing Friday, Backlund (undisclosed) will not play against host Minnesota in Saturday's matinee, Jessi Pierce of NHL.com reports.
Backlund remains with the team for a three-game road trip that wraps up in Dallas on Tuesday, which suggests that the 11th-year pivot is closing in on his return. He'll presumably be reevaluated ahead of Sunday's clash with the Blues.... See More ... See Less
Flames' David Rittich: Gets starting nod Saturday
Rittich will be between the pipes for Saturday's road clash with Minnesota, Pat Steinberg of Sportsnet 960 The Fan reports.
Rittich will man the pipes while Mike Smith (undisclosed) remains sidelined. Prior to coming into relief versus the Flyers on Wednesday, Rittich went 0-2-1 with a 3.05 GAA and .900 save percentage in four outings. Depending on Smith's health, the Czech netminder could get the start in both games of the back-to-back Saturday and Sunday against the Wild and Blues, respectively.... See More ... See Less
Flames' Mike Smith: Will travel with team
Coach Bill Peters expects Smith (undisclosed) to play sometime during the Flames' upcoming three-game road trip, Wes Gilbertson of the Calgary Sun reports.
David Rittich is starting Saturday against Minnesota and Calgary has recalled Jon Gillies to serve as his backup for that contest, so it's safe to assume Smith won't dress against the Wild. However, the fact that he's traveling with the team suggests he could be ready to return as soon as Sunday against the Blues, so another update on his status should surface prior to that match.... See More ... See Less
Flames' Mikael Backlund: Will travel with team
Backlund (undisclosed) will join the Flames for their upcoming three-game road trip, Pat Steinberg of Sportsnet 960 The Fan reports.
Backlund has already missed three games due to his undisclosed issue, but he figures to rejoin the lineup before the team returns to Calgary on Dec. 20 versus the Lightning. Once Backlund is cleared to return, Alan Quine may be the odd man out and head back to AHL Stockton.... See More ... See Less
Flames' Ryan Lomberg: Sent to bus league
Calgary assigned Lomberg to AHL Stockton on Friday, Pat Steinberg of Sportsnet 960 The Fan reports.
Mike Smith is dealing with an undisclosed issue ahead of Saturday's game against Minnesota, so the Flames needed to send Lomberg packing in order to make room on their roster for backup netminder Jon Gillies. The 24-year-old winger will likely be recalled by the big club once Smith is given the green light and Gillies is reassigned to AHL Stockton.... See More ... See Less
Flames' Jon Gillies: Promoted to top level
The Flames recalled Gillies from AHL Stockton on Friday.
Mike Smith is currently dealing with an undisclosed injury, so Gillies will likely serve as David Rittich's backup for Saturday's game against the Wild. The Flames play again Sunday in St. Louis, so if Mike Smith isn't cleared in time for that contest, Gillies could get the starting nod against the Blues.... See More ... See Less
Flames' Ryan Lomberg: Eligible to return
Lomberg (suspension) has served his two-game ban and is available for Saturday's meeting with Minnesota.
Even though he is an option, there is no guarantee Lomberg will suit up versus the Wild, as he has previously served as a healthy scratch on a number of occasions. Once Michael Frolik (lower body) or Mikael Backlund (undisclosed) is cleared to return, Lomberg figures to find himself heading back to AHL Stockton.... See More ... See Less
Flames' Mike Smith: Held out with apparent issue
Coach Bill Peters revealed after Wednesday's game against the Flyers that Smith was removed after two periods because he "wasn't right," Kristen Anderson of The Calgary Sun reports.
Smith reportedly tried to play through the issue but couldn't. The team didn't disclose whether it was an injury or an illness that prevented Smith from taking the ice in the third period, but it could leave his status in doubt for Saturday's contest against the Wild. David Rittich took over for him and almost assuredly would receive the starting nod Saturday if Smith can't go.... See More ... See Less
Flames' Johnny Gaudreau: Tallies game-winner
Gaudreau posted the game-winning goal with two assists, a plus-2 rating and five shots on goal in a 6-5 overtime victory against the Flyers on Wednesday.
The 25-year-old didn't have a point in his last game Sunday, but other than that, he has multiple points in five of the last six contests. Gaudreau also has at least a point in eight of his last nine games, and dating back to Nov. 17, he has registered seven goals and 23 points with a plus-13 rating in 13 games. This incredible hot streak has pushed Gaudreau over the point-per-game plateau. He has 13 goals and 42 points in 32 contests this season.... See More ... See Less
Flames' Matthew Tkachuk: Posts four assists for second time
Tkachuk registered four assists and seven shots on goal in a 6-5 overtime victory against the Flyers on Wednesday.
This is actually the second time this season that Tkachuk has recorded four assists in a game, but the seven shots is a season high. Those two contests account for one third of his helpers this season (24), which is just one shy of his mark in the category last season. Tkachuk also has 13 goals, giving him a healthy points per game average with 37 points in 32 contests.... See More ... See Less
Flames' Sean Monahan: Registers multiple points again
Monahan posted another multi-point game with two goals, including one on the power play, and three points along with eight shots during a 6-5 overtime victory against the Flyers on Wednesday night.
In four of the last six games, Monahan has scored at least two points. But apparently, it's been all or nothing for him this month, as in the two games where he didn't have multiple points, he didn't register a point at all. Still, owners will take his six goals and 11 points in the last six games. A goal per game is obviously not sustainable, but Monahan is getting so many pucks to the net that when this hot streak ends, he might not see that much of a drop off.... See More ... See Less
Flames' Mark Giordano: Scorching hot
Giordano scored a goal and three points while contributing a plus-2 rating, four PIM, four shots on goal, four blocks and two hits during 25:07 in a 6-5 overtime victory against the Flyers on Wednesday.
The 35-year-old defenseman did just about everything Wednesday and now has a streak of three straight games with multiple points. During that stretch, Giordano has a goal and eight points. Overall, goals have been hard to come by for the veteran, but he's been so potent in the assist category, he's averaging more than a point per game. He has four goals and 32 points with a plus-18 rating in 30 games this season.... See More ... See Less
Flames' David Rittich: Picks up win in relief
Rittich stopped four of five shots in relief during a 6-5 overtime victory against the Flyers on Wednesday.
The lack of work isn't going to help his numbers because he did allow a goal, but Rittich picked up his ninth victory of the season. He already has more wins than he did all of last season when he played in 21 games. Rittich has appeared in 16 contests this season, and he is 9-3-1 with a .921 save percentage and 2.31 GAA.... See More ... See Less
Flames' Mike Smith: Leaves after two periods
Smith allowed four goals on 14 shots before getting pulled in a 6-5 victory against the Flyers on Wednesday.
The Flyers scored four times in under eight minutes to begin the second period, so Smith's night ended after the period. It's too bad too because Smith appeared to be turning a corner. He had stopped 56 of 58 shots in his previous two games and came into the night with a six-game winning streak. That streak is still intact, but after Wednesday, Smith's other numbers worsened. He is 11-7-1 with an .888 save percentage and a 2.99 GAA this season.... See More ... See Less