(Ryan is dutifully attending every day of the Flames development camp. We will continue to roll out all of the player profiles and interviews as he collects them.)
One of the biggest acquisitions of the summer for the Calgary Flames was Corban Knight. The big-bodied center was a star at the University of North Dakota (for the team formerly known as the Fighting Sioux), but opted not to sign with the team that drafted him, the Florida Panthers.
Traded to Calgary in mid-June for a fourth round pick in the 2013 NHL Draft, Knight made his on-ice debut in Flames
silks practice-type jerseys at this week’s development camp. He noted in speaking with the media that the chance to make the team out of camp is one of the things that lured him to Calgary.
“That was one of the most exciting parts about getting traded here, the opportunity to step in and work for a spot out of training camp is every young guy’s dream coming out of college or junior,” said Knight. “So I was extremely excited. I’m really looking forward to the fall and this camp’s a good measuring mark of where I am and where I need to go.”
A native of High River, Knight’s family were among those affected by the devastating flooding throughout southern Alberta in recent weeks. While his family is safe and he was able to recover some mementos – including his first goal puck and some jerseys from his college days – he admits that the ordeal has weighed on his mind over recent days. That said, his experience might not be a negative.
“Is is a distraction, but it’s a good distraction,” said Knight. “I think it kind of brings you back down to Earth when you have everything taken from you like that. It makes you feel pretty spoiled to live in Canada where we live, and stuff like that. When something like that happens, it brings you back down and puts everything in perspective. It’s a good distraction, I think. It makes you work harder and makes you realize you have to work for everything in this life.”
While it’s yet to be seen if he’ll pull on a #10 jersey for the Calgary Flames in the fall, development camp was his first try. Following the first day of on-ice work, he admitted that he wasn’t sure if the events of the whirlwind few weeks he’s had have fully been absorbed.
“To be honest, I’m not sure if it’s really even sunk in yet,” he said. “I’ve done the signing and the trade and stuff, but it’s still pretty surreal just to be back here in southern Alberta and be part of the organization. It’s a dream come true.”