SUN Hockey Pool

Movers and shakers

RANDY SPORTAK -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 1:35 PM ET

Most of their Calgary Flames teammates left for some fun in the sun during the Olympic break.

Mike Leclerc and Brian Boucher used the time to relocate here from Phoenix.

That's right -- from the desert heat to blowing snow and bitter cold.

Doesn't exactly sound like the stuff of dreams, does it?

Actually, Boucher said his family is loving the white stuff.

"My son (three-year-old Tyler) woke up and he was fired up," explained the goaltender. "Plus, we've been watching the Olympics during the break and showing him skiing and stuff like that, so my wife's been prepping him about going skiing.

"He's really excited to see snow."

While so many in the Stampede City are cursing the havoc caused by these storms, two families who've come here from Arizona are loving every minute of it.

"We grew up in the Northeast, so we're used to this stuff," explained Boucher, who originally hails from Rhode Island. "It doesn't get as cold as here but we get a fair bit of snow in New England.

"This is more reality to us. We were fortunate to live in Phoenix for three-and-a-half years but it's not hockey weather and not reality.

"It's nice to be back in these surroundings."

It'll be even nicer when he, wife Melissa and their children -- they also have a one-and-a-half year old daughter Brianna -- move into their digs.

Having lived at the home of Daymond Langkow, the Bouchers were expecting the moving trucks to arrive yesterday afternoon.

And once the unpacking is complete, the odyssey is over.

"I told my wife the day we came was in the top three most stressful days in my life," Boucher said. "Travelling with two young kids, can be trying as it is but then you've got to go through customs and all those lines.

"They were pretty good and it was still pretty stressful. I'm just glad we're all here."

Leclerc is in the same boat.

He and his family -- wife Andrea and 28-month-old daughter Chloe -- settled in during the Olympic break, which has meant playing in the snow for the first time in more than a year.

"At Christmas during the lockout, we went to Winnipeg and she was almost a year and a half, so she was in the snow all excited," he said. "I told her she'll get to play in snow here but I don't think we were expecting that much. At least Daddy tells the truth."

Although both of Calgary's newest players are due to become unrestricted free agents after this season, potentially making a move at this time a short-term deal, Boucher said he plans to be here a while.

"It would be one thing if we went to a last-place team and knew we'd be done April 15 but the expectations here are winning a Stanley Cup," he said. "I want them to experience that whole situation."

By the time he and the Flames return to action Tuesday, Boucher expects to have his new equipment -- including a newly painted mask, with a Flaming C busting through a brick wall -- ready.

"It should be this week. We're waiting on that and new pants. I've still got the red pants underneath with the shell," he said. "When I get the pants and the new mask, I'll be good to go."


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