Flames first-round pick Zary pumped for unexpected audition at AHL level

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Author of the article:

Wes Gilbertson

Publishing date:

Feb 20, 2021  •  2 hours ago  •  4 minute read

Canada’s Connor Zary takes a shot on Swiss goaltender Noah Patenaude during the 2021 IIHF World Junior Championship at Edmonton’s Rogers Place in this photo from on December 2020. Photo by Codie McLachlan /Getty Images Article content

Connor Zary will eventually be B.C.-bound. At least, that’s the plan.

In the meantime, the Flames’ first-round pick certainly doesn’t mind this extended stay in Alberta.

Until his junior squad — the Western Hockey League’s Kamloops Blazers — is green-lighted to return to the rink, the prized prospect is eligible to intern with the Flames’ farm team at the American Hockey League level.

Zary will log his first professional game Sunday when the Stockton … er… Saddledome Heat host the Toronto Marlies in their season-opener in their temporary home digs.

“I think it’s going to be huge for me and I’m trying to take advantage of every day I’m here, just trying to learn new things and be around these guys and get a taste of professional hockey,” said Zary, a slick centre who was selected at No. 24 overall in the 2020 NHL Draft. “Not only being here and helping the Heat win and trying to do what I can to help the team, but I also think for my personal development, it’s amazing being able…

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