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Doing the work: Flames pledge to soldier on in quest for playoff spot

“(There are) more teams in it than just Winnipeg, so we need to take care of our own business. That’s what we need to worry about.”



They weren't giving up much at practice today, just a pledge from the three Calgary Flames players made available to microphones and cameras to be intensely focused on the work ahead.

In a tight Western Conference, there'll be plenty of that for the Flames and the eight teams ahead of them in the standings.

The Flames sit four points behind the Winnipeg Jets for the final wild-card playoff spot and 11 points back of Pacific Division rival Vegas Golden Knights, who before the puck dropped on 11 NHL games tonight were tops in the West.

The Flames return to action tomorrow night against the visiting Anaheim Ducks (7 p.m.) following a successful two-game roadie on which they won both games against Western opponents Dallas and Minnesota.


Defenceman Chris Tanev following practice March 9, 2023

"We're focusing on what we need to do," defenceman Chris Tanev told assembled media following this morning's practice. "We tried to have a good practice today and then (have a) good skate tomorrow morning and get ready for the game. (There are) more teams in it than just Winnipeg, so we need to take care of our own business. That's what we need to worry about."

Starting goalie Jacob Markstrom was a major factor in both the aforementioned Flames victories, including a shutout performance in a 1-0 shootout win over the Wild. It was his first blanking of the season.

"I'm sure it's great for his confidence, Tanev said. "These last few games, he's been awesome for us and gave us a chance to win every game, so I mean we've got to now as players help him out a bit and put our game together, get it where it needs to be."

'Hungry for more'

Markstrom echoed Tanev's comments about staying focused and having "the same mentality (even when the Flames) have been losing a lot of hockey games."

The Flames were winless in five games before the pair of road victories on back-to-back nights.

"You still have to come to the rink and … be hungry for more," said Markstrom, who sports a 17-17-8 record, a 2.89 goals-against average and an .893 save percentage in 44 games this season. "I think our group is doing a good job with that."

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