Top prospect Poirier poised for pro debut

Three more of the Calgary Flames' 2013 draft choices – left winger Emile Poirier and defencemen Keegan Kanzig and Eric Roy – have joined the Abbotsford Heat after their junior seasons ended.

Poirier is on the road with the Heat and could make his pro debut Thursday vs. the San Antonio Rampage, while Kanzig and Roy will practice with the rest of the team's "black aces" in Abbotsford.

Poirier, a first-round selection (22nd overall), is coming off a huge season with the Gatineau Olympiques of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, racking up 43 goals and 44 assists – along with 129 penalty minutes – in 63 games.

"He had his first practice today," head coach Troy Ward said Wednesday from San Antonio, noting that Poirier brings first-rate finishing skills. "We're looking forward to getting him into one of these three games (on the road trip), or two maybe. We'll see how it goes."

Forwards Markus Granlund and Trevor Gillies are also traveling with the Heat after extended injury absences, and Ward expects both players to also get into the lineup at some point this week.

On Monday, the Heat assigned goalie Olivier Roy to their ECHL affiliate, the Alaska Aces, leaving recent signee Doug Carr as the backup to Joni Ortio.

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