July 9, 2021

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Plenty of time for Flames to think about Jets ahead of lone all-Canadian matchup

The Calgary Flames’ first opponent if and when the NHL resumes is a crew they noticed as soon as this season outdoors.

The Winnipeg Jets edged the Flames 2-1 in additional time Oct. 26 within the Heritage Basic out of doors sport in Regina.

Bryan Little scored the winner at snowy, chilly Mosaic Stadium.

The NHL halting the common season March 12 due to the COVID-19 pandemic meant the Jets did not journey to Calgary two days later and once more March 31.

However the league’s relaunch plan pits the prairie-province golf equipment towards one another in a best-of-five “play-in” spherical which might decide the 16 playoff groups.

Having doubtlessly two months to organize for an NHL opponent is exclusive.

“I don’t think we want to focus on Winnipeg so, so much that we’re frozen by it,” Flames head coach Geoff Ward stated Wednesday throughout a convention name.

“We’ll do our due diligence on Winnipeg. We know who the opponent is now, but the most important thing we’re thinking about is how we’re going to prepare our team to play Winnipeg.”

WATCH | Rob Pizzo breaks down the brand new NHL playoff format:

CBC Sports activities’ Rob Pizzo joins CBC Morning Stay’s Heather Hiscox to debate the NHL’s lately introduced playoff plan. 5:00

When the NHL hit pause, Calgary (36-27-7) ranked third in Pacific Division 4 factors again of the second-place Edmonton Oilers.

The Jets (37-32-8) have been fourth within the Central and held down the primary wild-card berth within the Western Convention.

“I think playing them late in the season would have probably been an advantage to both teams in terms of preparation,” Ward stated.

“Clearly now we get to review Winnipeg a bit of bit extra as a result of we all know they’re our opponent. Crucial factor for us is what are we going to do, let’s get to our sport and what does that contain?

“How can we put together ourselves the most effective to come back out of the break and be enjoying our greatest hockey, when that first puck drops?”

Each Calgary and Winnipeg have been eradicated within the first spherical of playoffs in 2019.

WATCH | Bettman’s press convention in 2 minutes:

Commissioner Bettman outlined the NHL’s 24-team playoff format, and the draft lottery. 2:11

The Jets reached the Western Convention ultimate in 2018 earlier than bowing out to the Vegas Golden Knights.

The NHL going to convention matchups as an alternative of divisional might have negated an early Battle of Alberta within the relaunch, though the league has but to announce how playoff groups might be seeded.

The Flames may find yourself enjoying the Jets in Edmonton as a result of the provincial capital is a candidate metropolis for the NHL’s hub-city idea to finish the playoffs.

“It will be loads much less journey to get there,” Flames captain Mark Giordano acknowledged.

“We’re all anticipating to don’t have any followers within the constructing, so I do not suppose will probably be an excessive amount of of a bonus both method.

“The big thing for us is how the seeding works. Home-ice advantage is still an advantage obviously for last [line] change and stuff like that.”

WATCH | Bracket breakdown:

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman describes the 24-team straight-to-playoffs format. 1:27

Ward, who took over as Calgary’s interim head coach in November when Invoice Peters resigned, has some expertise teaching an NHL crew that wishes to hit the bottom operating.

He was an assistant coach of the Boston Bruins throughout the lockout season of 2012-2013. The NHL did not resume till Jan. 6.

“There certainly are some parallels and some things you can draw on there,” Ward stated.

“We need to understand there is a little of urgency coming out of this one just in terms of the first one being a best-of-five, just in terms of how long the players are going to have been off without really being able to skate.”

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