SUN Hockey Pool

Brett Sutter called up

RANDY SPORTAK, Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 8:51 PM ET

So much for the glut of forwards. The extra bodies aren’t anywhere to be found these days.

Remember the Flames situation after the Olympic break?

There were so many forwards, they were starting a sixth line in practices.

Veterans such as Craig Conroy had to worry whether they would get back in the lineup and GM Darryl Sutter traded away Dustin Boyd for a fourth-round pick.

Thanks to the sudden wave of injuries which has three skaters on the shelf, the club had to summon Brett Sutter from the AHL Abbotsford Heat in time for Tuesday night’s clash with the Anaheim Ducks.

Barring a miracle recovery by centre Daymond Langkow (neck) or left wingers Christopher Higgins (foot or ankle) and Curtis Glencross (knee), Brett Sutter will likely also be with the club during its three-game road trip which begins Thursday at the New York Islanders before also heading to Boston and Washington.

Conroy remembered a conversation with the GM about all the bodies which has become prophetic.

“He said, ‘You never know. We could have injuries.’ Sure enough, here we are. He made the right call,” Conroy said. “You can never have enough guys. In 2004, we didn’t have enough guys in the end. We ran out of them.”

The Flames ran out this spring to the point it summoned Brett Sutter, the third-year pro who collected nine goals and 24 points through 66 AHL games this season.

Sutter skated on a line with Eric Nystrom and Jamal Mayers to start the Anaheim game.

It’s also a reunion with Brent Sutter, his uncle, who coached him nearly two full seasons with the WHL’s Red Deer Rebels.

“I know what he’s all about and what his expectations are, and I’m prepared to meet that,” Brett said. “It’s my job to come in here and not get away from the player I am, fit in. Just play the game I’m expected to play.”

Sutter skated in four NHL games last season, and collected one goal.

Although not pegged to be a scorer, the player drafted 179th overall in 2005, admittedly hoped to provide more punch this season.

“I didn’t get off to the start I wanted, but since Christmas, the last 20 or 25 games, it’s been good. Hopefully I carry it on and keep going,” said Brett, who moved to centre for the Heat since Mikael Backlund was called up.

There was no update on Langkow Tuesday following his injury suffered Sunday when he was hit in the spine at the same moment he fell awkwardly head-first against the Minnesota Wild.

Then again, with the club’s playoff hopes hanging by a thread, players can only think about who’s playing.

“Right now, you can’t dwell or worry about who’s in the lineup or who isn’t,” the head coach said. “Everybody that is dressed has to perform and has to get out there and give it all they’ve got. Every game for us is like Game 7.”

randy.sportak@sunmedia.ca

FALLEN FLAMES

Injuries throughout the 2009-10 season

Oct. 1-6: Brian McGrattan (upper body), three games

Oct. 1-9: Cory Sarich (lower body), five games

Oct. 9-16: David Moss (upper body), five games

Oct. 24: Brandon Prust (upper body), one game

Oct. 28: Dustin Boyd (illness), one game

Nov. 17: Brian McGrattan (upper body), one game

Nov. 21-30: Rene Bourque (lower body), six games

Nov. 25-Jan.2: Cory Sarich (ankle), 19 games

Dec. 7: Robyn Regehr (undisclosed), one game

Dec. 9-11: Craig Conroy (undisclosed), two games

Dec.11-15, 23: Adam Pardy (upper body), four games

Jan. 5-11: Craig Conroy (undisclosed), five games

Jan. 17-Feb. 9: David Moss (shoulder), 13 games

Jan. 25-Feb. 9: Nigel Dawes (leg), 10 games

Jan. 27-Feb. 13: Craig Conroy (undisclosed), 10 games

Feb. 9-13: Rene Bourque (shoulder), three games

March 7-14: Nigel Dawes (illness), four games

March 15-present: Christopher Higgins (leg), five games

March 19-present: Curtis Glencross (knee), three games

March 21-present: Daymond Langkow (neck), one game

Total man games lost — 102


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