Flames decline worlds invites

STEVE MACFARLANE, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:13 PM ET

Although every single one of them would have loved to extend their hockey season with their NHL team, a half-dozen members of the Flames have passed on the opportunity to keep playing by taking part in the world championships later this month in Slovakia.

“I got a text yesterday,” said Flames winger Alex Tanguay, who politely declined his invitation from Team Canada.

“I think they called the GM about a few guys.

“I’ve got a few injuries to take care of, and the fact I’ve got no contract next year, it makes no sense (for me to go).”

The pending UFA wasn’t alone in that regard.

Flames winger Curtis Glencross — who has had a spectacular campaign with career-highs in goals (24) and points (43) — doesn’t have a deal in place for next season, and his wife only recently gave birth to their first child.

Jay Bouwmeester is getting married this off-season, and Olli Jokinen (Team Finland), Jarome Iginla and Mark Giordano also said thanks, but no thanks, for family reasons.

Rene Bourque seems to be mulling it over.

“I think it really is an individual decision and each guy has his own unique circumstances,” said acting Flames GM Jay Feaster. “Every guy has to look at it on his own.”

Tangs eyes long-term

Alex Tanguay will be getting a raise, there’s no doubt about that.

But the length of his next deal may be as important to the talented winger, who has played for three different teams the past three seasons and would love plant some roots.

“We’ve moved around the last few years,” Tanguay said. “Obviously, with the family, we want to settle down.”

Earning US$1.7 million this season, Tanguay has re-established himself as a prime playmaker. Flames fans hope he’ll stick around, but it’s unlikely he’ll take too much of a discount to stay in Calgary despite his fondness for the city and playing with Jarome Iginla.

“We’re gonna look at the situation. We’re going to see the different options, what’s available to us,” Tanguay said. “I’m sure we’ll be talking to the team here once things are done.

“I’ve said all along I like it here. I came back for a reason. I knew what I was getting myself into. I took the pay cut to give myself a chance at getting my career back on track where I want to put it.”

Regehr skips practice

Defenceman Robyn Regehr didn’t practice Friday morning at Father David Bauer Arena, but is still expected to skate in Saturday’s game.

The Flames will need all the bodies they’ve got to ice a full squad against the Canucks. Niklas Hagman (concussion) had a setback and didn’t skate Friday, while both Lance Bouma and Greg Nemisz were sent to help the AHL Abbotsford Heat try and make the playoffs, so the extra defencemen will likely be needed to fill out the forward ranks.

“We’ll have a lot of defencemen in the lineup,” head coach Brent Sutter said with a laugh. “That’s really what it’s gonna be.”

Brendan Mikkelson skated with Matt Stajan, and Steve Staios could join them on the fourth line.

steve.macfarlane@sunmedia.ca

twitter.com/MacfarlaneSteve


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