Alex's Denver do-over

Calgary Flames forward Alex Tanguay will make his return to Colorado tonight to face the...

Calgary Flames forward Alex Tanguay will make his return to Colorado tonight to face the Avalanche. (Calgary Sun/Darren Makowichuk)

STEVE MACFARLANE -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 9:34 AM ET

Alex Tanguay was nervous last time he went to Colorado.

The former Avalanche winger was all revved up for his first meeting with his former teammates on their turf but a nasty blizzard forced a cancellation and delayed Tanguay's homecoming to the Pepsi Center another month.

On the eve of the Calgary Flames' second visit to Denver tonight (7 p.m., Sportsnet), snow was once again in the forecast.

"Hopefully the weather will be good enough this time for us to play," said Tanguay before the Flames headed to the airport to board their charter.

"It's supposed to be a snowstorm coming in. I guess it's the year for it. They've been getting lots of snow."

Chances are slim a second meeting will be postponed but should the unthinkable happen, Tanguay may not be able to cage his anxiety.

"I'm a little anxious, a little nervous to go there. It should be a lot of fun," Tanguay said. "It's gonna be a little nerve-racking and I'm anxious to get that game underway."

As edgy as he is to face his old squad for a second time this season -- the first ended in a 5-2 Flames victory at the Saddledome Nov. 28 -- Tanguay is equally restless to see what the fan reaction will be when he touches the puck or has his name announced on the sound system.

He's not sure whether they will boo, cheer or remain silent.

Stephane Yelle, who spent seven seasons with the Avs before joining the Flames in a trade back in 2002, remembers a quiet homecoming in his case.

"There was no ovation," said Yelle.

"It's kind of awkward when you go back for the first time. I'd been there for seven years, so I was a little anxious."

Now, though, Yelle feels nothing extra when he enters the arena in the Mile High City.

"Four, five years later, it's like any other building for me," said Yelle.

The veteran who won two Stanley Cups -- one as Tanguay's teammate in 2001 -- isn't sure what the fans in Denver will do upon Tanguay's return but expects the best.

"That's a good question. I think Colorado's got good fans and Alex was a big part of the team. He won a Stanley Cup there," said Yelle. "I think they'll be good for him."

That's assuming the game gets played this time and Tanguay finally gets to close that one final door on his six-year Colorado career.

After the game was cancelled in December during the Flames' longest road trip of the season, Tanguay did what he could to see friends and former teammates.

He had an early Christmas dinner with some of his friends outside of the hockey world but could only manage one rendezvous of note when it came to the players.

"I saw Johnny Liles but that was it," said Tanguay. "He lives close to downtown, that's the only guy that could get around.

"It will be nice to see them on the ice. I wish them all the best but hopefully not against the Flames."


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