There will be a lot of talk about all the Calgary Flames players taking part when the team starts formal practices at the Saddledome on Thursday.
On Wednesday, the talk from GM Brad Treliving included some unfortunate news for a couple of key players who won’t be taking part.
Oliver Kylington will be away indefinitely dealing with a personal family matter.
The Flames GM asked that people respect his privacy, but did share that the absence is unrelated to substance abuse or anything along those lines.
“He is dealing with a personal issue, a family issue. The organization is in full support of Oliver,” Treliving said.
“I would just ask media members and people alike to give Oliver some privacy in this time right now. We’re fully supportive of Oliver, and we’ve been in touch with him. We just want to give him some time right now.”
Kylington was one of last year’s biggest stories in camp and beyond, earning high praise for his pre-season performances and then claiming a top-four role in his NHL breakout.
The Calgary Flames have 10 defencemen on one-way deals. Without Kylington, expect longer looks for Juuso Valimaki, Connor Mackey, and newcomers Nicolas Meloche and Dennis Gilbert. Chris Sedoff also has a camp invite after a strong showing in Penticton at the Young Stars Classic.
They haven’t shown the same dynamic upside as Kylington. But there is tremendous depth on the back end to lean on while their breakout blueliner is away.
The Flames also have old faithful Michael Stone on a PTO.
Mangiapane will sit out with minor “tweak”
Meanwhile, Calgary Flames winger Andrew Mangiapane — who may be pencilled in for a top-line role — will miss some time with a tweak. Your guess is as good as mine as to where that tweak took place during his offseason workouts. But Treliving did say the 26-year-old will be skating on his own.
“We anticipate it is going to be very short-term,” Treliving said. “He probably will rejoin the group in the next couple of days.”
On a positive tip, defensive stalwart Chris Tanev appears ready to hit the ice with no restrictions. The veteran, however, is unlikely to get game action until later in the pre-season schedule.
His recovery from off-season shoulder surgery has progressed nicely.