SUN Hockey Pool

Godard anxious to knuckle down

MIKE BELL -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 9:33 AM ET

Bigger, brawnier and more game to go -- the Calgary Flames just got all three.

Yesterday, the club announced what was first reported last week in the Sun -- the signing of 6-ft. 4-in., 225-lb. tough guy Eric Godard.

Godard, who played the last six seasons with the New York Islanders and their AHL farm team, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, inked his name to a $450,000 US one-year, two-way deal.

The move is seen as an attempt by the Flames to beef up their lineup and give more skating room to forwards Alex Tanguay and Jarome Iginla, possibly letting the latter rest his knuckles this season.

For his part, the right-winger who dropped the gloves 13 times last year including against former Flame Chris Simon -- now an Islander -- is more than happy to add that element to the club, not shying away from the word "enforcer."

"I know my role," Godard said from his home in Vernon, B.C. "I know what kind of player I am and what I can do and I know what I can do to help the team. Iggy, the kind of player he is and what he can do for the team, he's a game-changer. To have him on the ice instead of the penalty box is definitely a positive."

Still, this being the 'new' NHL, the 26-year-old is also hoping for the opportunity to display the other aspects of his game. He had four points and 115 penalty minutes in 57 games with the Islanders last season.

"I want to try and expand my role to -- who knows? -- penalty killing and stuff like that, to make myself more valuable to the team."


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