Game day

STEVE MACFARLANE -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 8:55 AM ET

COMING IN

The Flames got a great goaltending performance from last-minute starter Matt Keetley Sunday night but were shutout 3-0 by the Panthers in their exhibition opener at the Saddledome.

INJURIES

LW Kristian Huselius (leg bruise) was on the ice yesterday. RW Owen Nolan left early after feeling a twinge in a muscle but head coach Mike Keenan said it was just precautionary and Nolan worked out off the ice instead.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Mike Keenan has said he wants all his veterans to play at least once over the first three exhibition games, so we should see Jarome Iginla, Kristian Huselius, Cory Sarich, Daymond Langkow, Anders Eriksson, Rhett Warrener and Miikka Kiprusoff over the next two nights.

FEELIN' GREEN

Rhett Warrener, Cory Sarich, Warren Peters and Robyn Regehr were all raised in Saskatchewan -- Peters and Sarich were born in Saskatoon -- while Brad Cole captained the Blades last season. Dustin Boyd played junior hockey in Moose Jaw. Assistant coach Rich Preston was born in Regina and is a proud Roughriders fan.

SCHOOL'S IN

Curtis McElhinney now knows just how much harder NHL shots are compared to those in the AHL.

"After taking that one last night, yeah, I'd have to say that's true," McElhinney said yesterday after missing his first exhibition start following a slapshot from Owen Nolan in warmup that bruised his privates. "I got hit in that place that you don't really want to get hit. I feel a heckuva lot better today and I'm getting kind of an armoured car on there now, so everything's taken care of."

McElhinney should start in Saskatoon tonight, and might have earned a free meal yesterday from friend Matt Keetley, who made the start.

"The funny thing was I said (before the game) 'Curt's a machine. This guy's never going to get hurt.' He asked me today where I'm taking him out to lunch so I think I owe him a supper for that one.


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