When the Calgary Flames visit Capital Centre tonight, it will be a homecoming for the Flames' new assistant coach, Guy Charron.
Charron, one of the few memorable players of the Washington Capitals' early days, will be making his first appearance at the Centre since his retirement as a player in 1981.
Charron spent five seasons wearing the Capitals' No. 15 after earlier service with Montreal, Detroit and Kansas City. He holds an unenviable record: 12 seasons in the National Hockey League without ever appearing in a Stanley Cup playoff game.
After leaving Washington, Charron was a player-coach in Switzerland, served as general manager-coach of the Quebec Remparts junior team for two years and for the next five years was an assistant general manager and assistant coach for Team Canada.
"Throughout my career, I've been a lot of places, but the longest time with one team was the Washington Capitals," Charron said in a telephone interview. "I had some great moments there. I played in three world championships while I was with Washington. I never thought as a young boy I'd play in the NHL at all and to play 12 years was a great accomplishment.
"Everybody's goal is the Stanley Cup and it wasn't there for me. That's one record I'd rather not have. But I was destined to be a key player for expansion teams. The players with the Calgary Flames are most aware of my work with the national teams and they can't believe, when I was with Montreal and Detroit, that I never got into a playoff. The year I was in Montreal was the first time in 24 years they did not make the playoffs."
Zezel Says He's Ready
Washington's Peter Zezel skated through yesterday's workout at Mount Vernon and pronounced his left ankle fit for service. Zezel will center the fourth line, between Nick Kypreos and either Alan May or Steve Leach. . . .
A slap shot by Bob Rouse caught goalie Mike Liut on the side of the head in practice. Liut fell like a tree, but was up quickly and figures to have nothing more than an earache.