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Flames ‘still don’t know’ who starting goalie will be

Jiri Hudler

Calgary Flames head coach Bob Hartley speaks to the media following his team’s game in Calgary, Alberta, Wednesday, March 27, 2013. The Calgary Flames Hockey Club have traded team captain Jarome Iginla in exchange for forwards Kenneth Agostino and Ben Hanowski and the Pittsburgh Penguins 2013 first round pick. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Jeff McIntosh)


Calgary coach Bob Hartley knows he has three goalies -- Joey MacDonald, Karri Ramo and Reto Berra -- auditioning for the starting gig.

What Hartley doesn’t know is who’ll be his No. 1.

“Still don’t know,” Hartley told the Calgary Sun over the weekend. “They’ll have, basically, to prove themselves on a daily basis.”

Unlike his decision on Calgary’s captaincy -- Hartley said he knew who his choice would be days before naming Mark Giordano -- the goaltending choice seems to be legitimately up in the air.

MacDonald, 33, has the most NHL experience (122 career games) and appeared in 21 contests for Calgary last season. So it’s likely he’s got the inside edge.

That said, the Flames made a big financial investment in Ramo (two years, $5.5 million) after he captured back-to-back KHL All-Star nods. The Finnish netminder hasn’t played in the NHL since 2009, but was only 23 back then.

The darkhorse appears to be Berra, the 26-year-old Swiss phenom who starred in the National League A and for Team Switzerland at the 2013 Worlds.

To hear Hartley explain it, though, there’s no favorite and there’s no darkhorse. Just an open competition.

“They’re all in the same boat right now,” he explained. “I can’t say that one is ahead of the other.

“It’s a three-man battle.”


Or maybe it’s a two man battle? From Sportsnet’s Darren Millard...

With Jay Feaster on hc@noon, sure sounds like the goalie battle is a two horse race. Team not overwhelmed by the shape of Joey Macdonald

— Daren Millard (@darenmillard) September 23, 2013