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Flames Shrug Off Klingberg’s Threat Stars Will “Go After” Andersson

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Shots fired. That applies both literally and figuratively to the Calgary Flames playoff series with the Dallas Stars.

A heated 1-0 Flames win on Tuesday night was littered with penalties. Many of them were of the minor variety but there were also some heavy handouts for serious rough stuff.

That included game misconducts for Calgary Flames defenceman Rasmus Andersson and the Stars’ John Klingberg. They were automatically tossed because they got into a secondary fight after the scrap between Matthew Tkachuk and Michael Raffl after the buzzer sounded at the end of the first period.

After taking a handful of fisted shots from Andersson in the bout, Klingberg took some verbal ones.

“I mean, I’m not saying I’m a tough guy, but he’s acting tougher than he is,” Klingberg said after the game. “I feel like he’s the one guy there in the scrum, he doesn’t have a guy. I’m standing there with Coleman, and he’s standing there shaking his gloves to me, like, ‘You wanna go against me?’ Probably the least fighter on our team on the ice there. I’m skating over to him; I’m dropping my gloves and I want to go and he’s just standing there. And then all of a sudden he drops his gloves.”

Klingberg seems to plan on holding a grudge.

“He’s acting a little tougher than he is,” he said, punctuating his stance on the incident. “We’re going to go after him.”

Flames not concerned about comments

Whether that means the Stars defenceman believes his teammates are going to target the Calgary Flames’ 50-point defenceman physically is open to interpretation.

Flames head coach Darryl Sutter isn’t worried.

“Whatever,” he shrugged Wednesday when the Klingberg comments were brought up. “I don’t think them guys are going to be fighting each other again this series.”

And as for the idea of Andersson playing with a bullseye on his back?

Suck it up, says Sutter.

“Just play. It’s playoffs. Guys get hit. It’s the way it works,” said the coach. “Guys that don’t get hit usually lose.”

His defence partner, Noah Hanifin, expects Andersson will likely feed off any extra attention.

The feisty blueliner has never been one to shy away from trash talking or extracurricular physical engagements on the ice.

Andersson “a competitor”

“He’s a competitor. He likes to get engaged in that type of game, sometimes,” Hanifin said of Andersson. “I don’t think it fazes him. It doesn’t really affect the way he plays. It gets him into the game. It’s not a bad thing.”

As for Tkachuk, who triggered the sequence of events with a hard hit on Klingberg behind the Stars net.

“I don’t even know what that means, going after somebody. But I think we’ve got enough guys who can handle ourselves outside of Ras, who can handle himself quite well,” said Tkachuk.

“I didn’t have a problem with what Ras did – I thought he did a good job sticking up for himself. I think as a team we’ve got a lot of team toughness and kind of a pack mentality where we like to stick up for each other and play that hard style. There’ s not one guy on the team that is afraid of that.

“I think we’ve said it a bunch how close of a team we are, but I think we’ve done a good job of showing that as well, which is just as important.”

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