“I don’t want to get too into it,” said winger Chris Thorburn, who was with the Flames last season when Thorburn lost his battle with cancer.
“But it’s definitely something I’m going to miss.”
Thorburn said he’ll miss seeing teammates at the rink.
“I want to make sure they’re happy,” he said.
“We’re all going to be upset when the team’s gone.”
On the eve of the Flames’ season opener, the players and coaches discussed the toll of playing in a city where the death toll from the disease is still climbing.
They spoke of a sense of community and the fact that the team was able to make a statement in a difficult time.
“It’s a good feeling,” said defenseman Mike Conacher, who is in his fourth season.
“Especially if you’ve been through something like this, we feel like we’re not alone in it.”
But the players also spoke of the difficulty of a season without a first-place vote.
“Every year you lose a guy, there’s no one left,” Conacher said.
Thorburn added: “The year before I had a guy I felt like we needed to win the Cup and he’s not here.
In a recent interview with the Calgary Herald, Flames general manager Jay Feaster said he’d like to add another first-year player to the lineup. “
This year, we’re going to need everyone to be together.”
In a recent interview with the Calgary Herald, Flames general manager Jay Feaster said he’d like to add another first-year player to the lineup.
But it’s not clear if he’ll do so with a roster that already includes veteran goaltender Jhonas Enroth, who could miss the start of the season because of a groin injury.
“When you have two or three guys that are out there, you don’t have a lot more to do,” Feaster told the paper.
“If you have a team that is just one player away from not getting to the playoffs, that’s where we need to be.”
The Flames also are dealing with a new coach, Dave Tippett, who took over a team in desperate need of a boost.
“There’s no doubt that the last few weeks have been very tough,” Flames forward Jarome Iginla told the newspaper.
“The players have been through a lot together, and we have all been together in times of adversity.
It’s going back to how we want to play.
I’m not going to let anything get in the way of that.”
Iginlas, who won the Hart Trophy in 2010-11, said that although he’s been dealing with his own health issues, the team has had to come together in the face of adversity before.
“Everyone has to take care of their own things,” he told the Herald.
Sometimes the biggest things you can do is get out of the house and get help.”