The Calgary Flames get set to host the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday night and they will have their star goaltender back between the pipes according to TSN.ca.
Miikkaa Kiprusoff, who has been out since February 5th with a sprained MCL will make his return to the Flames lineup and will get the start in goal against the Sharks.
The Flames currently sit in 13th place in the Western Conference, just four points out of eighth. The club has done considerably well without Kiprusoff, having used a handful of goalies in his absence.
The most recent was Danny Taylor who made 29 saves to pick up his first ever NHL victory on Sunday night when the Flames defeated the Vancouver Canucks. Taylor, 26, was originally drafted by the Los Angeles Kings in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft, but only appeared in one game for the Kings, back in the 2007-08 season.
He started 2 games for Calgary when Kirpusoff was on the shelf and has since been demoted to the AHL.
Prior to the injury, Kiprusoff was 2-3-2 with a 3.24 GAA and a .870 save percentage. Hardly typical numbers for the former all-star. Known for his slow starts, Kiprusoff could be primed to get hot and carry the Flames to a potential playoff spot.
He’s also been the speculation of much trade talk in Calgary, aside from Jarome Iginla of course. The Finnish netminder is a free-agent after next season and carries with him a cap hit of $5.83 million for this season and next. The Flames are said to be at a crossroads this season of either trying to make the playoffs one more time, or blow the whole thing up and rebuild.
The latter option would likely require both Kiprusoff and Iginla being traded but one has to worry about the value of Kipper. Should he continue to struggle by his standards after the injury, the Flames won’t get nearly what they could have had they dealt him last season when he was putting up typical Kiprusoff numbers. If the Flames get hot and make a push for the playoffs, dealing the netminder would be foolish.
Stay tuned as this story is just getting going. Much more is sure to come of it over the next few weeks.