The goaltender movement continues for the Calgary Flames. Just hours after returning David Rittich back to the American Hockey League’s Stockton Heat, the Flames have recalled Jon Gillies from their minor league affiliate on an emergency basis.
Gillies was previously up twice this season on emergency recalls: once when Brian Elliott had an illness and more recently after a lower-body injury to Chad Johnson. His return to the club suggests that Johnson’s not quite ready for action, though it may be just a short-term move to give the Flames enough healthy bodies to run full practices before the playoffs kick off later this week.
Gillies has had a busy week. He started for the Flames on Thursday in Los Angeles and picked up his first NHL win. Then he was sent to Stockton for Saturday’s home game against the San Jose Barracuda and made 31 saves for another big victory. Now? Back to the big league.
Presumably this move means that Rittich will be given the reins in Stockton for the time being. While Mason McDonald was recalled from Adirondack and backed up Gillies on Saturday, the Heat also added ECHLer Joel Rumpel on a pro try-out to give them an extra body – McDonald was battling injuries in Adirondack and it makes some sense to have an insurance policy around in the form of a third goalie that isn’t Stockton’s goalie coach.