SUN Hockey Pool

Twine time to try Flames' Karlsson

RANDY SPORTAK, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 7:56 PM ET

DETROIT — The debut is coming for Flames backup goaltender Henrik Karlsson.

When exactly it will be wasn’t something head coach Brent Sutter would divulge.

“He’s definitely going to get an opportunity in one of these next two games,” Sutter said. “I’m not going to tell you today which one it’s going to be, if that’s what you’re asking.”

The Flames play the Detroit Red Wings Thursday night in the Motor City and visit the Columbus Blue Jackets the next night.

Conventional thinking says Karlsson would get the nod in Columbus.

“We’ll see what happens. I don’t think any goalie will play

82 games,” Karlsson said. “It’s been a while and you always want to play, but it’s nothing to go and think about. Just try to be the best goalie you can every day and take your chance when you get it.”

Karlsson, the latest netminder to serve as caddy to star goalie Miikka Kiprusoff, was acquired from the San Jose Sharks for a sixth-round pick during the 2010 draft. He was given a one-way contract despite having never played a game in the NHL or in the North American minors.

He made a strong case in the pre-season by posting a 0.75 goals-against average and .962 save percentage over eight periods of work. However, he hasn’t played since Oct. 1.

“You don’t worry so much about, ‘I gotta get the backup in because he hasn’t played in a while,’ ”

Sutter said. “You worry about the other side of it, with your starting goaltender and when is the right time to not play him.

“Then your backup goaltender has to win some games for you.”

Ice chips

New D Brendan Mikkelson practised with the team, but Sutter said he’s not racing to put him in the lineup. “If you’re playing well, the team’s going good and everybody’s playing to their potential, taking guys out of the lineup because you want to get somebody in, I don’t think is the right way to look at it.” ... D Cory Sarich didn’t take part in the session due to “maintenance”. He had to be bumped and bruised after all the collisions he’s initiated the past two games ... Calgary’s penalty killing has been perfect in the last four games, snuffing 15 chances in that time. “Don’t talk about that,” said forward Curtis Glencross. “If it’s something good, we don’t want to brag it up and get too wrapped up in it. It’s been good so far, but that’s one of the things we wanted to key on this year.”


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