Flames hoping for OT in east

TODD SAELHOF -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 11:49 AM ET

 Bring on the Philadelphia Flyers.

 Or the Tampa Bay Lightning.

  To the Calgary Flames, it doesn't really matter who they meet in the Stanley Cup final, starting Tuesday.

 The NHL's Western Conference champions are just tickled pink that it's taking the Flyers and Lightning so darn long to determine the Eastern Conference representative. Game 7 goes tonight in Tampa, Fla.

 "If they want to battle for another seven periods or more, we'll take it," said Flames playoff veteran Stephane Yelle, relishing the prospect of an extended overtime in tonight's deciding tilt between the Flyers and Lightning.

 "Game 8, Game 9 ..." chuckled teammate Andrew Ference. "If it's triple OT (tonight),

 I won't be sad.

 "But as much as you'd like to see that, the other team is going to be just as pumped up as we are. It's not like we're gaining a huge advantage by them playing Game 7."

 Perhaps not physically -- although that remains to be seen. But certainly the Flames are getting a jump on both teams technically.

 GM-head coach Darryl Sutter said yesterday his staff is already breaking down video of both the Flyers and Lightning. And the players themselves are getting a good gander at their would-be opponents since they eliminated the San Jose Sharks Wednesday.

 "I was happy (to see Philadelphia win in overtime in Game 6)," said Ference of Thursday's 5-4 nail-biter. "Not only for the fact that we get to play one of them but just for the fact I can sit down at home and concentrate on watching their game and seeing their systems. We're looking at systems and looking at the tendencies of different players. We're going to see a lot of that in videos and stuff anyway but it's nice to see a whole game within the whole context. It's helpful."

 "No matter what, we'll probably be underdogs again," said defenceman Jordan Leopold. "But it's going to be a great challenge and a great opportunity. Whichever team we face, whether it's Philly or Tampa, they have great skill and we're going to have to play well to beat them."


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