Conroy eyes change

RANDY SPORTAK -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 10:56 AM ET

Who said old guys can't change?

Craig Conroy may have had 36 candles on his last birthday cake, but the Calgary Flames veteran centre decided once and for all to wear a visor.

Conroy was forced to don the protective shield in late November after being accidentally struck in the face by Anaheim's Corey Perry, which broke his nose.

"It still feels weird. I don't love it, it's not my favourite thing, but as you wear it more and more you get comfortable," Conroy said.

"That was so close. When I opened my eye, I had blood in it. I got hit twice when I was in L.A., the second time a week after I took the visor off.

"I've been hit three times in the visor in practice with pucks, and I'm sure I'd have been cut without the visor."

Its not the only big change Conroy's made recently.

After his disastrous miscue in the last game before the Christmas break -- in overtime against the New Jersey Devils, the puck bounced off Conroy's stick, a gaffe that resulted in the winning goal -- he decided to switch sticks.

Instead of using a one-piece graphite model like most of his NHL peers, he's chosen to go with a wooden blade.

In his first game with the new weapon, he ended a scoring drought at 14 outings, and followed that with a three-assist performance. He added two assists last night against the New York Rangers.

"I feel with that wood stick, I can control the puck better. Taking passes, passing, all things, with the wood stick I just feel a little bit better," he said. "Now it feels good."

The surge in production may also have to do with being reunited with sniper Jarome Iginla.

"Any time you get to play with Jarome, it's fun," Conroy said. "He and Juice (Kristian Huselius), the way they're playing, I just want to get to the puck to them. You get the opportunity to get some points, and help contribute offensively -- that's what we all want to do."


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