After the Calgary Flames were embarrassed on home ice by the Toronto Maple Leafs last night, they got a bit of good news this morning. Michael Stone, who hasn’t played for the team since November, has been assigned to the minor leagues for a conditioning stint, the last step before he returns to the NHL lineup. Stone has suited up just 11 times this season.
The Flames are still in first place in the Pacific Division and second in the entire NHL, but have now lost two games in a row by a combined score of 10-4. While obviously an excellent team, their goaltender has been questions all season including last night when David Rittich was beat by a long, slow shot from Maple Leafs forward Tyler Ennis. Though there isn’t really anything the team can do now to address their goaltending situation, they can improve the defense by bringing Stone back into the mix.
While he’s not a game-changing option for them, Stone does provide another right-handed option and brings more experience than some of the team’s young options. Today at practice the team had Dalton Prout back on the right side of T.J. Brodie, a spot that Stone could potentially take over if he proves healthy at the minor league level. At the very least he will give the team more depth for what should be a long playoff run.