No Hudler, no Stajan for Flames tonight vs. Vancouver


“Makeshift” is probably the best way to describe Calgary’s forward group right now.

Already without the services of of Jarome Iginla (traded), Blake Comeau (traded), Paul Byron (wrist) and Brian McGrattan (shoulder), the Flames announced on Wednesday that Jiri Hudler (upper body) and Matt Stajan (ditto) would be out of the lineup tonight when they take on the Canucks.

As for what that leaves? A lot to be desired at center, mostly.

NHL’s At the Rink blog reports Calgary’s expected centers tonight will be Mikael Backlund, Roman Horak, Max Reinhart and Blair Jones, the latter recalled from AHL Abbotsford yesterday.

“I’m obviously excited to be back,” Jones said. “I got a chance to go and play a lot in [Abbotsford] but I’m just excited to be back and hopefully finish out the year here.”

Calgary’s currently jockeying for best odds for the No. 1 pick at the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, sporting a 14-20-4 record heading into tonight’s action.

Only Florida (13-20-6) and Colorado (12-22-5) are worse, though the Flames put distance between themselves and the Avs on Monday with a 3-1 win at the Pepsi Center.