News and Notes – April 8 2015

It’s an off-day for the Calgary Flames after their big win (and the Kings’ big loss) last night, and so it was a relatively low-key practice day for the locals.

But the arena was reasonably abuzz with talk of the importance of tomorrow night’s big game.

INJURY UPDATES

The official update on Lance Bouma, per coach Hartley, is day-to-day with what’s being called an upper-body injury. Also out of the line-up are Karri Ramo (lower body), Paul Byron (lower body), Ladislav Smid (neck) and Mark Giordano (bicep). Smid and Giordano are, of course, shut down for the season.

For the curious, Joni Ortio did work out on-ice with Jordan Sigalet and the guys that skated today (which, per Pat Steinberg, were as follows):

Ortio didn’t practice with this “main group,” leaving the ice as the official practice was to begin.

The expectation seems to be that Brandon Bollig moves into the line-up, as the most veteran left-handed shot, with Bouma (a lefty) likely not available for tomorrow. That said, he also has played some of his best games of the season against the Kings, so I’m not wholly unconvinced that he wouldn’t have been slotted in regardless.

Given the small amount of players, lines were impossible. I’d wager something like this:

Gaudreau – Monahan – Hudler
Raymond – Backlund – Colborne
Ferland – Granlund – Jooris
Bollig – Stajan – Jones

Russell – Wideman
Brodie – Engelland
Schlemko – Potter

Hiller

And yes, that means the same healthy scratches as usual (minus Bollig): Tyler Wotherspoon, Drew Shore and Sam Bennett. This scenario keeps the top line and the kid line together, and Bollig has played with Stajan a ton this season, so there’s a fit.

THE AWARD

Peter Maher was in the house this morning, and for good reason – the presentation of the team award that bears his name.

Colborne picks up the award for the second straight year. It’s voted on by the traveling media members.

QUOTEABLES

“We’ve been playing playoff hockey since our first game of the season. We asked the players to be in the mindset to compete hard every day, practice hard every day, to have full commitment to allow us to be in this spot. Our players deserve it.”
-Bob Hartley, on his team’s approach to the big game tomorrow night.

“Lots of times, it’s not the toughest army that’s going to win, it’s gonna be the smartest one.”
Hartley, on team discipline.

“We haven’t accomplished anything yet. Obviously, we know that making the post-season is our number-one goal, and once we make the post-season is to be successful in the post-season.”
-Brandon Bollig, on the team’s mindset heading into tomorrow’s big game.

“Everyone in this room is willing to do that. Guys have their little nagging injuries, but knowing that we’re in the driver’s seat, knowing that we need just two points to get into the post-season, it makes guys forget all of that. Yes, like you said, it definitely energizes guys and puts a spark in us.”
-Bollig, on Bouma’s bodily sacrifices and the team being masters of their own destiny.

  • DoubleDIon

    It’s really distressing that the Flames dress better lineups against the Oilers and Coyotes than they do against the Blues and Kings. Granted, the absence of Bouma against the Kings isn’t voluntary, but a better solution than dressing Bollig would be moving Colborne to LW and dressing Shore as a RW.

  • Parallex

    I feel like tomorrow’s game might be the one that finally gives me the heart attack thats been on the verge of happening all year long… Go Flames Go!

    • Parallex

      The way Johnny/Mony/Huds have been driving the net lately, we should see 3 goals by our top line…

      The way Kopitar slashed his stick on the goal post after the Oil scored the empty netter, you can bet the Kings will be one pissed off team against the Flames Thursday night. Kings know it is sudden death for them so the Flames better be prepared from the drop of the puck!

  • TheoForever

    I don’t see the kings losing tomorrow. I’m sorry I just don’t. They’re a proud group coming off an awful loss to the oilers. They’ll be hungry, ready to go, and will exert their will on our young team. They know what it takes to win too. I highly doubt the flames beat them tomorrow in regulation.

    My prediction: Flames go to Winnipeg and clinch a playoff spot there instead.

    If you think the kings are going to lose tomorrow you’re deluded.

  • TheoForever

    It looks like Flames are planning to only use 3 lines. If Bollig is killing out there and not in a good sense, perhaps we can double shift someone.

    Considering this is 3rd game in 4 nights for Kings, I like our chances.

  • TheoForever

    I like seeing Granlund and Fedland together. They have shown chemistry previously.

    On this next game I will make a one time exception on Bollig. We may need him as a deterrent in case D-Sutt tries to pull any B.S.

    You know the variety of Sutter B.S. i am talking about.

  • TheoForever

    Well boys, the biggest game in 10 years is tomorrow night!! The downtown is going to shut down by 3:00 pm and there wont be a seat in the bar by 4:00pm. Bollig is going into the lineup to fight, plain and simple, and the grouchy Kings will want to do that. Expect the Kings to take stupid penalties.

  • TheoForever

    I’m not a huge fan of Bollig but I’m not against Bollig playing against the Kings. He will play limited minutes and provides a big body and someone to step up should the Kings start taking liberties.

    • TheoForever

      Finally! You see the value that Bolig brings even though it took you 81 games… I’ll use your words…big body, step up….yes amazing that you have finally seen the light…..