SUN Hockey Pool

Addition can't faze Kiprusoff

RANDY SPORTAK -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 11:10 AM ET

The addition of Curtis Joseph simply boils down to the Calgary Flames needing an experienced back-up goaltender.

At least, that's what the Flames and Joseph maintain.

Still, the questions abound how No.-1 netminder Miikka Kiprusoff feels about the addition.

Joseph is hardly a conventional back-up, seeing as he currently sits fifth on the NHL's all-time winning list and has been through pretty much every experience imaginable as a pro.

Some goalies would feel threatened, but Kiprusoff said he doesn't have a problem.

"It's goaltending. You're always competing about icetime," he said. "It doesn't matter how old guys are, it's always the same thing -- two guys there trying to do their best and trying to help the team get wins.

"It doesn't change too much what I'm doing. But experienced guys, like Jamie (McLennan) last year, they have some good tips for goalies. They've been around a long time."

Probably no relationship among two hockey players can be the same as goaltenders. Only they truly know what the job is like, so it's important they have a strong, positive rapport.

Kiprusoff doesn't foresee any issues with Joseph, either.

"I just met the guy, so we'll see. Everybody tells me he's a great guy, he's good in the room and is a good goalie, so it's good for us," he said. "I've had a few partners here the last few years, and they've all been good guys and nice to work with."

For his part, Joseph said he knows his role with the Flames, although it's not one he's had before.

"I'm sure we speak the same language," Joseph said. "It will be interesting to talk to him about certain games and situations. If I can pick up a few things from him and if he can pick up a few from me, that would be great."

Flames goaltending coach David Marcoux said Kiprusoff, known for his laid-back ways, took the news of Joseph's signing in stride, without feeling threatened.

"It was typical Miikka," Marcoux said. "The desire for him to help his team ... don't change. He's professional.

"He had success with veteran goalies behind him, and he had success with young guys, too, and that has no impact or no bearing on what his preparation has to be."

Kiprusoff has been a workhorse this season, starting all but one of the club's 48 contests. However, Joseph's addition will likely mean he'll receive more rest through the remaining 34 games. The club has five sets of games on back-to-back nights, as well as a spell with 13 tilts in 25 nights.

Kiprusoff wouldn't guess how many games Joseph would take.

"That's always the coach's call, not mine," he said.


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