T.J. Brodie returns to Flames two weeks after collapsing at practice
29-year-old defenceman in lineup for Monday's game in Pittsburgh
The Calgary Flames announced defenceman T.J. Brodie was activated from the injured reserve list and was in action against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Monday, two weeks after collapsing during practice on Nov. 14.
Brodie practised for the first time Sunday after a brief hospital stay and further testing. Team officials stated the tests showed positive signs and Brodie has joined the team on its road trip.
The 29-year-old now has a newfound appreciation for the game.
"After everything [that happened] it sort of gives you a different outlook," said Brodie following Monday's practice. "One thing I noticed is you have to try and enjoy the game more. It's a game — it's supposed to be fun, and playing professionally it's easy to treat it more as a job.
"We'll see what happens tonight and go from there."
Coach Bill Peters had said Brodie would be a game-time decision against the Penguins.
"He's real good. He looks good and he's a game-time decision but it looks promising," Peters said.
Flames captain Mark Giordano expressed his relief and revealed Brodie's eagerness to get back in the lineup.
"After what happened with T.J. for this past week to have gone as smoothly as it has, it's honestly a boost," Giordano told reporters on Sunday. "Put hockey aside, we're really happy to see that as players, teammates and friends.
"He's been texting me and he's been ready to play now for a few days. Hopefully we get him back soon, going through a skate and pre-game skate is another test for him but he looks great."
The Flames' former fourth-round pick (114th overall in 2008) has eight assists in 21 games and is averaging 19:12 of ice time per game.
In a corresponding move, the Flames sent Brandon Davidson back down to the Stockton Heat (AHL). The Flames sit sixth in the Pacific Division with an 11-12-3 record.