Huselius stole spotlight

RANDY SPORTAK -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 11:36 AM ET

Last time the Calgary Flames met the Pittsburgh Penguins, the story heading into the game was then-rookie phenom Sidney Crosby.

Yet, it was Kristian Huselius who stole the show.

"Yeah, it was exciting. First game with the Flames and we got a win," Huselius recalled yesterday with a grin. "Hopefully we can get another win like that."

And he wouldn't mind duplicating the rest of that experience.

Huselius, acquired the day before from the Florida Panthers, assisted on all three Calgary goals in the 3-2 victory at Mellon Arena two years ago, and began a turnaround of his career, which was stagnating in Florida.

"It was tough in Florida and it was a fresh start for me," he said. "After that, it just kept rolling."

However, it hasn't been rolling as well of late for the left winger. After a strong start to the season, he suffered through a horrible slump in November and lost his confidence.

"I expect a lot from myself and want to play well," he said. "I guess I get too hard on myself and start thinking too much. When you're out there working and reacting, playing my game, it's fine."

At least it appears his game is rounding into form. Huselius has four points in the last six games, fired six shots on goal against Columbus last Saturday, and was finally rewarded when he scored against St. Louis Tuesday, his first goal in 10 games.

"It was nice to get a goal, for sure," Huselius said. "I think we played well the whole game. As a line, we created a lot of chances and I had a lot of chances -- I was upset I didn't bear down in the second period, he made a glove save when I couldn't get it high enough."

While Crosby will be the centre of attention when he hits the Saddledome ice for the first time, the opportunity will also be for the rest of the Flames to show what they can do.

Huselius has the skills to take over a game, but he said it's best to not go into the game focused on a one-on-one duel with Crosby.

"It's just another game, we're focusing on winning the game and shutting him down," he said.

"You can't really think about Crosby all the time, just shut him down like you try to do against any other top line in the league."


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