News and Notes from the Weekend

Ryan Pike
August 13 2012 11:14PM

Leland Irving (Resolute/Wikimedia Commons CC BY-SA 3.0)

BABY FLAMES COLLECT GOALIES

The Flames organization continued to collect goaltenders at a torrid pace this past week. After signing Leland Irving on July 27, the Abbotsford Heat followed suit with a pair of signings. The baby Flames inked veteran netminder Barry Brust on August 8 and Danny Taylor on August 10.

The signings give the Flames quite a few goalies in their pro development system. Under professional agreements for 2012-13 are Miikka Kiprusoff, Henrik Karlsson, Leland Irving, Joni Ortio, Barry Brust and Danny Taylor. However, Ortio will be on loan to TPS Turku of SM-Liiga for next season, while both Karlsson and Irving would need to pass through waivers to play in the AHL.

The Abbotsford Heat begin play in early October.

BUTLER ON CBA TALKS

Chris Butler (Resolute/Wikimedia Commons CC BY-SA 3.0)

As the National Hockey League Players' Association prepares its rebuttal to the NHL owners' initial CBA proposal, the individual players have begun to weigh in via social media.

Flames blueliner Chris Butler chimed in yesterday via his Twitter account:

“CBA thoughts...The OWNERS design a business model that allowed the players to increase compensation by growing the game/increasing revenue”

“#theplayers have grown the game to the best/most exciting/most profitable it’s been, now the OWNERS want their money back. #hedgeyourbets.”

The NHLPA is expected to submit its proposal to the NHL on Tuesday.

IGINLA'S PUCK POSSESSION

The excellent Puck Stops Here blog over at Kuklas Korner has been looking at some advanced stats metrics. Lately they've taken a look at Jarome Iginla's puck possession numbers. The numbers are not pretty.

“This past season he had the tenth worst team and zone adjusted Corsi rating in the league.  To put things simply, when Iginla was on the ice Calgary’s opponents dominated the game.  They controlled the puck.  This is particularly bad because he led the Flames in ice time among forwards, so there was a considerable amount of time the other team controlled the puck.”

They go on to detail how, surprise, Jarome Iginla is a one-dimensional player (that dimension being offense.) They also offer a rather sobering assessment of the present situation.

“Calgary lacks the depth to play him in a reduced role where he would likely be much more useful.
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Now in his third full season covering the Calgary Flames and the NHL, Ryan Pike is a Calgary native and FlamesNation's managing editor. He's trying to keep his head up, his stick on the ice and is giving it 110% every shift. You can also find his work at The Hockey Writers, the Wrestling Observer and Tough Talk MMA.
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#51 McRib
August 14 2012, 02:40PM
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Interesting that of the Top Corsi players last year it included Ryan Kesler who had a horrible season. I guess Corsi doesn't included things like flopping all over the ice, failing to break stride most nights and throwing muffins on net. Haha. His coach called him out this off-season, last year was so bad, yet he looks great on the Corsi.

Ryan Getzlaf was also included despite a career low -11, huge letdown offensive season. Where he lacked any drive and finish around the net. Basically if you don't play for a high puck possesion team you aren't included.

No matter what you do with the puck when you have it.

Only players that are interesting are players like Fedor Tyutin on Columbus who buck the trend of where their teammates finished. Obviously players on Calgary had a Bad Corsi Sutter's dump the puck in at the blueline and sit back offense created it. Iginla also has two guys draped all over him which open up ice for his teammates, yet makes it hard to have the puck consistantly.

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#52 RexLibris
August 14 2012, 02:50PM
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I'll wade in again on this one:

I don't think Iginla is a "lock" as a first-ballot hall of famer. Sorry guys. I think he is good, and he ought to be remembered for his many accomplishments, and I would rank him ahead of Sundin in terms of their overall careers, but when I see some of the guys who have and still are sitting on the outside looking in, Iginla still falls behind their accomplishments. Like I said, he probably belongs there, just not as a first-ballot certainty.

As for Iginla keeping up his current level of productivity for another 5-7 years, I'd be quite surprised if that was the case. Selanne is an example, but he is also an exception to nearly all of the rules of high-level athleticism. Like Chris Chelios, these older athletes are amazing and inspirational, but cannot be held up as a standard.

I've said this before so I'll try to keep it brief, in today's NHL market there are very few (perhaps no) teams that would be willing to give up the economic advantage inherent in a top prospect, a young star and a 1st round pick for a 35-year old winger with Iginla's habits, past performance notwithstanding.

Finally, Vintage Flame is right. Save the name calling for non-Flames fans. Like me!

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#53 McRib
August 14 2012, 02:52PM
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What I take away from these Corsi numbers, is if Hartley's systems can improve on Sutters which for any serious fan obviously had a large part in causing these low numbers.

Not sure about the rest of you but think Sutter's coaching systems were extremly painful to watch and for hockey players making millions of dollars far to simple to be succesful.

Dump it in a chase and wait for them to mess up really thats all Sutter could come up with, haha.

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#54 McRib
August 14 2012, 03:02PM
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@RexLibris

"I would rank him ahead of Sundin in terms of their overall careers" Sundin was a first ballot and he retired in a much more competitive decade than Iginla.

Iginla could finish in the Top 20 in scoring in history in a decade that will have produced no one even close in terms of offensive output. Honestly Iginla is a lock for First Ballot for the sole fact that who else is retiring in 5 years that put up nearly as many points???

Of Current Active Players in scoring only Jaromir Jagr, Teemu Selanne, Nicklas Lidstrom, Daniel Alfredsson and Joe Thornton are ahead the last two by mere points. Considering they all will retire at least five years before Iginla (Other than Thorton who will retire after) you are out of your mind to think he won't be first ballot. By the time Iginla is eligable they may not have had a first ballot for five years.

Selanne is an example of playing into his 40’s..... Haha.. So then what was Lidstrom, Roberts, Recci, Jagr, Ray Whitney, Alfredsson and all of the ever increasing amount of 40+ year olds in the past ten years thanks to improved training methods of which Iginla has always excelled.

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#55 Geoff
August 14 2012, 03:40PM
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Baalzamon wrote:

@TheLastBigBear

you're right, hockey players are paid too much. all professional athletes are.

but compared to players in practically every single other team sport ("football", soccer, basketball, baseball) hockey players are far from the most overpaid. fix the other sports first.

"All" professional athletes doesn't sound right to me. There's a reason professional curlers need to have a day job, and I think the funding for a lot of the athletes in the olympics are really low.

Why fix other sports first? How about work towards fixing them all at the same time?

Personally, I'm perfectly ok with the top 500 people in the world making millions if there is a market for it. I don't have any sympathy for them when they whine about money, but the reality is that what the players don't get the owners will just keep. It's not like the PA is fighting to lower ticket sales.

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#56 BurningSensation
August 14 2012, 04:41PM
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TheLastBigBear wrote:

1) Goalies are highly unpredictable, and the only certainty is that the Flames are going to need a new one within the next few years. I think playing the numbers game by having as many goalies as practical within the system is as good a policy as any. Especially if they are playing lots of minutes in the AHL (Taylor), KHL (Ramo), Finland (Ortio), hopefully NHL (Irving), or LNAH (Karlsson).

2) Butler's comments are valid. But I still have absolutely no sympathy. NHL salaries are too high, full stop. The owners are at fault, in a classic example of 'tragedy of the commons'. The solution is a new revenue sharing agreement that redefines how 'the common' is handled, as well as a lower salary cap. Chris Butler has already made more money at age 22 than the average person will make in their entire life. I don't begrudge him his money, but I'm not going to listen to him whine either.

3) Iginla's advanced stats are (in my eyes) mainly a coaching and management issue. The Flames have plenty of depth to give him more sheltered minutes if needed (ie Glencross-Backlund-Stempniak as a potential third line). And if they insist on playing him power vs power, then they should have gotten him one of this season's available centreman who can handle the minutes (ie Derek Roy, who went very cheaply this summer).

1. Agreed.

2. Are you a communist? The NHL makes Billions off of the labour of NHL players - the players deserve every penny they get. Butler's comment is on the money, this is a problem createdby the league, and thesolution is better revenue sharing - not another roll back of wages.

3. More or less agreed. The dump/chase methods of Butter were brutal on Iginla. I'm betting Hartley sees the light.

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#57 FireOnIce
August 14 2012, 05:35PM
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Oh man, blast from the past. Flames are bringing Steve Begin in to training camp on a pro tryout contract.

http://flames.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=639822

Might as well call around and see what Ville Nieminen is up to these days. Don't forget to place a call in to Berube and Turek while you're at it there Hartley.

We already have enough crowding on this team, we don't need to rehash the past.

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#58 T&A4Flames
August 14 2012, 06:38PM
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RexLibris wrote:

I'll wade in again on this one:

I don't think Iginla is a "lock" as a first-ballot hall of famer. Sorry guys. I think he is good, and he ought to be remembered for his many accomplishments, and I would rank him ahead of Sundin in terms of their overall careers, but when I see some of the guys who have and still are sitting on the outside looking in, Iginla still falls behind their accomplishments. Like I said, he probably belongs there, just not as a first-ballot certainty.

As for Iginla keeping up his current level of productivity for another 5-7 years, I'd be quite surprised if that was the case. Selanne is an example, but he is also an exception to nearly all of the rules of high-level athleticism. Like Chris Chelios, these older athletes are amazing and inspirational, but cannot be held up as a standard.

I've said this before so I'll try to keep it brief, in today's NHL market there are very few (perhaps no) teams that would be willing to give up the economic advantage inherent in a top prospect, a young star and a 1st round pick for a 35-year old winger with Iginla's habits, past performance notwithstanding.

Finally, Vintage Flame is right. Save the name calling for non-Flames fans. Like me!

I somewhat agree, but only somewhat. The only thing keeping Iggy from being a sure fire 1st ballot inductee is his lack of a cup. If he gets 1 before he retires, he will be.

5-7 years of solid productivity may be difficult. In order to do so, he really needs a better situation. One where he is a 2nd liner or even a 3rd with PP time. Also, do not expect it to be the Iggy of old. He has already declined in his ability to be that power forward. He needs to keep transitioning into more of a finesse player playing soft minutes.

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#59 negrilcowboy
August 14 2012, 06:45PM
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iggy is more of a liability than an asset huge contract dollars at the current time, deminished skills . how could any gm ply a trade for a third line winger at this stage. doesnt make any sense. the flames are cursed with iggy being the albatross.

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#61 44stampede
August 14 2012, 08:18PM
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Bean-counting cowboy wrote:

On Iggy - agree with everything thats been said. It's all been said before.

Re: CBA - the owners take on all the risk, half of which lose money hand over fist. The ones that do end up making some money deserve it - they took on the risk.

The players make enough money. So do SOME of the owners, but the owners are the ones that have forked out millions/billions to take on that amount of risk. Never had much sympathy for players in these negotiations. Or unions in general for that matter, but that's a point for another day.

That's right. The owners take most of the risk. The players do risk their skins but get paid very well for it. The owners may lose money. Do the players agree to pay back the owner some salary if the team loses money? If the players take some risks then they should also get more rewards. Of course this won't happen but this is one reason I have almost zero sympathy for them.

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#62 Willi P
August 14 2012, 08:24PM
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And to further Mr. Pike, I would rather see him retire as a Flame. IMO, he deserves it.

Bashing and negativity isn't going to change his game. Getting better coaching and players to handle the heavys will open it up for him. Considering what he has had to work with through the years, it is amazing what has been achieved.

So what if you "miss out" on perceived assets for a trade that doesn't exist if he retires here.

I am a fan and have been since the team was moved to Calgary, win or lose. I would rather have them win but not at the expense of simply discarding a player that has been here his whole career when he could have left in his prime and won somewhere else. No let's just dump him simply because he is getting older and you are done with him, he is only an asset.

But don't fret all of you negative posters, I am sure if he read these comments you will get your wish. I wouldn't want to stay where I wasn't wanted anymore either. If I am him however, I might just pull a Mats Sundin.

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#63 T&A4Flames
August 14 2012, 08:30PM
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negrilcowboy wrote:

iggy is more of a liability than an asset huge contract dollars at the current time, deminished skills . how could any gm ply a trade for a third line winger at this stage. doesnt make any sense. the flames are cursed with iggy being the albatross.

Wow, you are a real Iggy hater. He got his contract when he was the best player in the league and it runs out this year. Compared to the contracts players are getting lately, that was a dream contract and I would still say he is only mildly over-paid, if at all.

To say he is a 3rd line winger is just uneducated. Seriously, he has scored more than 30 goals a year for the last 11 years. Even if he only scored 20-25 goals a year he would still be a 2nd line complementary scorer on 80% of teams.

At the very least, he should get a very good prospect and a 1st rnd. pick if he goes at the deadline. I would say he would get a solid, young bottom 6er as well.

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#64 cLyde
August 14 2012, 08:59PM
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T&A4Flames wrote:

Wow, you are a real Iggy hater. He got his contract when he was the best player in the league and it runs out this year. Compared to the contracts players are getting lately, that was a dream contract and I would still say he is only mildly over-paid, if at all.

To say he is a 3rd line winger is just uneducated. Seriously, he has scored more than 30 goals a year for the last 11 years. Even if he only scored 20-25 goals a year he would still be a 2nd line complementary scorer on 80% of teams.

At the very least, he should get a very good prospect and a 1st rnd. pick if he goes at the deadline. I would say he would get a solid, young bottom 6er as well.

Gaustad got a 1st. Look what Kaberle got and Penner too. Way more value than they got.

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#65 RKD
August 14 2012, 10:02PM
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The latest on Jay-Bo is now linked with some more names.

Detroit would give up Ericsson, Filppula, and a prospect for Jay-Bo. TGTBT.

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#66 Baalzamon
August 14 2012, 11:39PM
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@RKD

lol that rumour (or one a lot like it) has been around for about 3 weeks now. The deciding factor is the prospect, but really, unless its Brendan Smith I wouldn't take that trade.

at the same time, though, I could see why Feaster (and others) would.

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#67 RexLibris
August 15 2012, 11:53AM
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For me the deciding factor on whether Iginla is or is not a 1st ballot hall of famer would be the graduating class of that year. In a year where there were other players who perhaps had not dominated the same way, or who also did not have Stanley Cup rings to their name, then I'd say he'd be a shoo-in.

If, however, he is eligible in a year with other dominant players, some of whom have championships, then my guess is he'd have to wait.

Then again, charisma and personality has a lot to do with it. Why do people like Dino Ciccarelli, Pat Burns and Glenn Anderson have to wait for years to get inducted? They were all more deserving than Mats Sundin, in my opinion. The voting members can be unpredictable.

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#68 RexLibris
August 15 2012, 11:58AM
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@RKD and Baalzamon

Why would Detroit do that deal?

I don't see that move as a win for Holland. Perhaps barely a break-even. I could be wrong, but the Red Wings are going to be needing greater contributions from their depth players now and will need their prospects and younger players to move up into positions of greater responsibility with the roster holes opening up.

Bouwmeester answers a question on the roster, but that trade would only mean creating more holes, from my perspective.

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#69 RKD
August 15 2012, 01:23PM
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RexLibris wrote:

@RKD and Baalzamon

Why would Detroit do that deal?

I don't see that move as a win for Holland. Perhaps barely a break-even. I could be wrong, but the Red Wings are going to be needing greater contributions from their depth players now and will need their prospects and younger players to move up into positions of greater responsibility with the roster holes opening up.

Bouwmeester answers a question on the roster, but that trade would only mean creating more holes, from my perspective.

Because teams like Detroit or Philly are really desperate and would take a Jay-Bo any day of the week over a guy like Ericsson.

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#70 Austin L
August 15 2012, 02:59PM
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The topic of goalies brought something to my memory. If and when training camp starts, will Karri Ramo be attending? Even if he won't play the coming season?

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#71 RexLibris
August 15 2012, 05:11PM
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@RKD

That may be true, but at what cost? Bouwmeester looks like a good fit, but if the cost goes beyond their comfort zone there are other, though perhaps less ideal, options out there.

I'm not saying it isn't possible, I don't have any access to Holland's train of thought or opinion on his own prospects and potential trade targets.

I do think, though, that he is very aware of having to balance the team's needs against the cost of acquiring the type of high-end talent to which they have become accustomed.

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#72 PrairieStew
August 16 2012, 12:43AM
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RexLibris wrote:

For me the deciding factor on whether Iginla is or is not a 1st ballot hall of famer would be the graduating class of that year. In a year where there were other players who perhaps had not dominated the same way, or who also did not have Stanley Cup rings to their name, then I'd say he'd be a shoo-in.

If, however, he is eligible in a year with other dominant players, some of whom have championships, then my guess is he'd have to wait.

Then again, charisma and personality has a lot to do with it. Why do people like Dino Ciccarelli, Pat Burns and Glenn Anderson have to wait for years to get inducted? They were all more deserving than Mats Sundin, in my opinion. The voting members can be unpredictable.

Rex - i did this a while ago over at Matchsticks

http://www.matchsticksandgasoline.com/2010/12/3/1853764/jarome-iginla-top-5-goal-scorer-of-all-time

When you adjust for scoring eras, Iggy has played in an era even lower scoring than Gordie Howe's. He is already way past Cicarelli and Anderson and certainly has been more of a leader than either of those 2 guys.

I understand the concept of a HOFer "raising the guys around you" but the flip side of that is it is hard to soar with eagles when you work with turkeys. Think of all of the Hall of Fame players Glenn Anderson got to work with.

Note I didn't even bother to compare him to Cam Neely who played in a high scoring era and had a short career and he got in, which in my view was ridiculous.

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#74 the-wolf
August 16 2012, 08:25AM
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Willi P wrote:

And to further Mr. Pike, I would rather see him retire as a Flame. IMO, he deserves it.

Bashing and negativity isn't going to change his game. Getting better coaching and players to handle the heavys will open it up for him. Considering what he has had to work with through the years, it is amazing what has been achieved.

So what if you "miss out" on perceived assets for a trade that doesn't exist if he retires here.

I am a fan and have been since the team was moved to Calgary, win or lose. I would rather have them win but not at the expense of simply discarding a player that has been here his whole career when he could have left in his prime and won somewhere else. No let's just dump him simply because he is getting older and you are done with him, he is only an asset.

But don't fret all of you negative posters, I am sure if he read these comments you will get your wish. I wouldn't want to stay where I wasn't wanted anymore either. If I am him however, I might just pull a Mats Sundin.

Deserves what? Iginla is well compensated, he's not 'owed' or 'deserved' anything that he hasn't already received.

And "so what if you miss out on assets?" Sorry, but that's pretty much how you run a team into the ground.

Seriously, what does Iginla retiring in Calgary do to improve the team? Bottom line, he is an asset. Once past the first round with him and that's not going to change anytime soon, so yeah, get whatever you can, the Iginla era is dead.

And I could care less if he reads these comments, what would his 7 million/year feelings be hurt? Who cares? Fanboy hero worship has no place in asset management.

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#75 RexLibris
August 16 2012, 10:51AM
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@PrairieStew

Good points. Although, in spite of all of this debate the whole thing is moot because none of us, to the best of my knowledge, has a vote. I guess we'll have to wait about five to eight years for Iginla's first eligibility to see what comes to pass.

Anderson's post-season performances are what I think most of his supporters felt qualified him for entry. Six Stanley Cups as a resonable contributor would have to be considered as well.

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#76 RexLibris
August 16 2012, 10:54AM
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@the-wolf

If the Iginla era is dead, does that mean that if he re-signs it will be an era of the un-dead? Zombie Iginla might be almost as frightening as Olli Jokinen on any given day.

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#77 PrairieStew
August 16 2012, 05:30PM
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@RexLibris

Anderson was clutch but one could argue the guy was never more than the 4th best forward on his team on any given year, let alone among the top 2 or 3 in the league for any extended period. He certainly contributed to 6 Cups, but ask yourself this - how many Cups does he win and would Glenn Anderson be a Hall of Famer if he plays from 1997-2012 on either the Edmonton Oilers or the Calgary Flames ?

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