Sunday, January 17, 2021
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This week in Flames — 3 Things We Know, 3 Things We Don’t

This week in Flames — 3 Things We Know, 3 Things We Don’t
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They don’t open the doors on Broadway after just a couple of dress rehearsals.

You don’t publish the first draft and expect a spot on the New York Times’ bestsellers list.

And after a whirlwind training camp and zero exhibition games, it wouldn’t be fair to expect the Calgary Flames to look like a well-oiled machine in Thursday’s season-opener at Winnipeg.

Nonetheless, it’s almost go-time. Yes, already.

By this time next week, you’ll be reading about a stellar start, a bummer of a beginning or maybe a mix of both.

Buckle up, Flames fans, the next four months — and hopefully more — will be fun …

3 THINGS WE KNOW

Lindholm is locked in as a centre (for now)

It’s not like he’ll suddenly forget how to work the right wing, but it’s obvious through the first week of training camp that the Flames believe Elias Lindholm can be most impactful as a middle-man. When the season starts Thursday, he will be cast as Calgary’s top-line pivot. Matthew Tkachuk will also feature prominently on that unit. Lindholm buried a team-high 29 goals in 2019-20 while skating primarily with Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan, but it’s Nos. 13 and 23 that could benefit most from his shift to centre. Opposing coaches will now have to determine whether to deploy their shutdown defenders against Lindholm and Tkachuk or to still key on Gaudreau and Monahan. It’ll be up to the other guys to capitalize on an easier matchup and to pace the Flames’ attack.



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