Joey MacDonald Hits the Waiver Wire

Kent Wilson
November 02 2013 11:00AM

 

 

The Flames decision to claim Joey MacDonald off of waivers last year was understandable - with Kiprusoff hurt and a collection of career AHLers and Leland Irving to choose from otherwise, grabbing a seasoned (albeit mediocre) veteran was defensible.

I never understood, however, why they decided to re-sign him this off-season. A 33-year old career back-up/below replacement level tender isn't a useful asset from any angle. He's not trade-able and he's not going to get better.

After a rough night against the Wings yesterday and boasting an .885 SV% to startr the season, Joey Mac is going back from whence he came - the waiver wire. My guess is he isn't picked up by anybody and is shuttled to Abbotsford to battle it out with Joni Ortio. I expect Reto Berra to be called up for the Chicago game tomorrow.

Berra, by the way, had a hot start to his year in Abby, but has cooled a bit recently with his SV% sinking to just .908. Of course, he has only played in 9 games in NA, so we really can't be sure what his true talent level is. Worth a look at least.

UPDATE (via Ryan Pike): courtesy the official AHL and ECHL sites: G Reto Berra and D Chad Billins are recalled to Calgary, G Laurent Brossoit is moved from ECHL Alaska to AHL Abbotsford to back up Joni Ortio.

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Former Nations Overlord. Current Fn contributor and curmudgeon For questions, complaints, criticisms, etc contact Kent @ kent.wilson@gmail. Follow him on Twitter here.
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#51 coachedpotatoe
November 02 2013, 08:01PM
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Baalzamon wrote:

Another win for Ortio. 35 saves, three more in shootout. Blair Jones with two goals and the shootout winner.

Just what I was going to report, add both Grandlund and Knight also scored in the shootout. I wonder if there will be a call up from the forward ranks to meet them in Chicago, Rhino also had an assist for all those haters.

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#52 EugeneV
November 02 2013, 08:26PM
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@HongKongHockeyFan

They have to give Stajan enough ice time to give him SOME trade value. (soon hopefully)

While at the same time they need to assess Colborne by giving him ice time, and of course at the same time they need to give Monahan enough ice as well.

This leaves Backlund where he is currently, a 3rd line center on a team without a 3rd line.

Backlund is a year older than Colborne with 150 more NHL games, so the team should know where he will slot in going forward. (maybe on another team)

Seems pretty clear to people who WATCH THE GAMES WITH THEIR EYES (not just with advanced stats which only complement the eye test) that he will not score enough to be a top 6 on a Cup winning team

Remember that WE ARE REBUILDING and that Backlund is only a piece of a puzzle and he is replaceable with a free agent when we actually need a 3rd line center

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#53 HongKongHockeyFan
November 02 2013, 09:02PM
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@Chad and EugeneV

Chad, I think you have hit the nail in the head about your assessment of Backlund's skill set. I still think his ceiling may be a bit higher, however, I believe it is hard to tell given Calgary's wingers, which are mainly second or third liners most nights. Though I have to give props to Hudler, he has been playing great this year.

EugeneV, I hope your wrong about management bumping up Stajan's minutes to lift his trade value because I'd rather see the Flames winning games at this point in the season, which has shown to be the case when he is not in the line up. As I mentioned before, I just don't think he is tradable asset given the lower salary cap. I just hope we don't resign him.

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#54 beloch
November 02 2013, 10:44PM
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Just watched the Oiler-Wings game... Man. Watching a slaughter like that really gives you some perspective.

1. Hartley is a GOD compared to Dallas Eakins.
2. It is a long way down to rock-bottom from where the Flames currently sit.
3. We should be thankful for the job Feaster's been doing.

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#55 acg5151
November 02 2013, 11:44PM
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Alaska Aces fan here. My friend watched the game that Brossoir played and he was pretty impressed. Him leaving won't affect AK too much because we already have Guggenberger but both it sounded to me like Brossoit and Ortio were both solid for the Aces. A lot of teams have worse goaltending prospect pipelines than Calgary right now.

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#56 Burnward
November 03 2013, 12:02AM
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Dear Current Calgary Flames,

THANK YOU FOR NOT BEING THE OILERS.

Sincerely,

My Sanity

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#57 aloudoun
November 03 2013, 01:20AM
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Just when it seems it can't get any worse for the Oilers… it does. I honestly can't think of how they can possibly fix this. They have no depth, no defence, no goaltending and no character or drive on that team. The culture of losing is hard to break... Happy to be a Flames fan right now :)

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#58 ngthagg
November 03 2013, 06:15AM
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Bringing Berra up to the NHL makes a lot of sense. It's so difficult to predict NHL goalie success from play outside the NHL that I firmly believe the only way to go is to give goalies time in the NHL. Ramo/Berra will be a better fit with Hartley as well. His win-you're-in, lose-you're-out strategy makes sense now.

Regarding Backlund, I have no problems with him on the fourth line. There are excellent reasons for Stajan, Colborne, and Monahan being ahead of him (some of which are outlined above). It's his linemates that I object to. Young defensively responsible centers are not common enough for us to give up on Backlund. Surely we could find some wingers that can play a similarly defensively responsible style of hockey, while at the same time provide opportunities for his scoring to develop! We can't afford to go the route of the Oilers and only develop players with top line potential.

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#59 ChinookArch
November 03 2013, 06:59AM
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aloudoun wrote:

Just when it seems it can't get any worse for the Oilers… it does. I honestly can't think of how they can possibly fix this. They have no depth, no defence, no goaltending and no character or drive on that team. The culture of losing is hard to break... Happy to be a Flames fan right now :)

Yup. Time to rebuild the rebuild.

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#60 coachedpotatoe
November 03 2013, 07:10AM
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ngthagg wrote:

Bringing Berra up to the NHL makes a lot of sense. It's so difficult to predict NHL goalie success from play outside the NHL that I firmly believe the only way to go is to give goalies time in the NHL. Ramo/Berra will be a better fit with Hartley as well. His win-you're-in, lose-you're-out strategy makes sense now.

Regarding Backlund, I have no problems with him on the fourth line. There are excellent reasons for Stajan, Colborne, and Monahan being ahead of him (some of which are outlined above). It's his linemates that I object to. Young defensively responsible centers are not common enough for us to give up on Backlund. Surely we could find some wingers that can play a similarly defensively responsible style of hockey, while at the same time provide opportunities for his scoring to develop! We can't afford to go the route of the Oilers and only develop players with top line potential.

This of course would mean rolling four lines. I still don't how a guy like Hartley can't get this especially with a team in rebuild mold.

With a skilled but two way forward like Stemp injured for at least two more weeks his replacement needs to be a similar forward; by now it has to be clear that if you play McG or Jackman that you limit your forwards you can play. Bring up a kid who can skate and has some offensive upside and has demonstrated he understands how to play a little d. Heck even bring up one of the journeymen forwards as one last look; Byron, BJones or even the big guy we have given up on(brain cramp I can't remember his name) Anything has to be better than watching this.(except watching the oilers)

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#61 coachedpotatoe
November 03 2013, 07:29AM
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With the Leafs losing another center last night I wonder if Burke will put his nose into looking at another trade.

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#62 ChinookArch
November 03 2013, 07:29AM
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For the most part, Hartley has done some very good work, since taking over. While the results are ultimately a credit to the players, Hartley has been a steady hand. Two complaints remain, first I'd like to see him trust, and develop the younger players, and sit vets that simply don't deserve the TOI they've received. This I think would improve, if he fixed the second complaint: his appreciaton of goons. By simply re-jigged the 4th line, and created another 3rd line with tons of speed, the team would impove. By my eye Calgary has enough talent to have 2 solid 2nd lines, and 2 solid 3rd lines.

By cutting McGratton from this team, and replacing him with GlenX on the forth, we end up with a dangerous and gritty 4th line, with the added benefit of elevating younger forwards up the rotation. Also, Backlund actually has a hockey player as a line mate.

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#63 coachedpotatoe
November 03 2013, 07:36AM
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ChinookArch wrote:

For the most part, Hartley has done some very good work, since taking over. While the results are ultimately a credit to the players, Hartley has been a steady hand. Two complaints remain, first I'd like to see him trust, and develop the younger players, and sit vets that simply don't deserve the TOI they've received. This I think would improve, if he fixed the second complaint: his appreciaton of goons. By simply re-jigged the 4th line, and created another 3rd line with tons of speed, the team would impove. By my eye Calgary has enough talent to have 2 solid 2nd lines, and 2 solid 3rd lines.

By cutting McGratton from this team, and replacing him with GlenX on the forth, we end up with a dangerous and gritty 4th line, with the added benefit of elevating younger forwards up the rotation. Also, Backlund actually has a hockey player as a line mate.

Who replaces GlenX on that line? So you leave the Monahan and Colborne lines alone, have Backs with Bouma and GlenX and Staj, with DJ and??? a call up from Abby.(Youngster or Journeyman) I would be fine with that.

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#64 coachedpotatoe
November 03 2013, 08:23AM
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I have been looking at the Heat roster and thinking about all the anger towards Byron/Butler trade for RR; hard to believe that Byron is only 24 and many have totally given up on him. Nemisz is only 23 and he has also been written off by many. While I'm not advocating that they are great they are having decent seasons in Abby. By the way for all the Rhino haters out there he is now up to -4 but has points in the last 3 games.

Looking at the Heat roster boy are they young on the back end. Ortio has played well in his three games, won them all; two as a starter one in relief. Up front Knight is becoming a good pro and Grandlund seems to be adjusting to north american ice. BJones might be doing enough either to het out of Hartleys dog house or to have a trade value.

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#65 Scruffyfish
November 03 2013, 09:19AM
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coachedpotatoe wrote:

Just what I was going to report, add both Grandlund and Knight also scored in the shootout. I wonder if there will be a call up from the forward ranks to meet them in Chicago, Rhino also had an assist for all those haters.

I recall Reinhart had a mediocre year in AHL last year but was very impactful when brought up. Perhaps he is better than appears.

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#66 BurningSensation
November 03 2013, 09:26AM
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beloch wrote:

Just watched the Oiler-Wings game... Man. Watching a slaughter like that really gives you some perspective.

1. Hartley is a GOD compared to Dallas Eakins.
2. It is a long way down to rock-bottom from where the Flames currently sit.
3. We should be thankful for the job Feaster's been doing.

I love this assessment, in particular, #2.

When the Oilers bottomed out it was because they were utterly awful (to the complete surpise of their management) - and despite 3 1st overall picks (and the gift of Justin Schultz), the roster remains awful.

In contrast, Feaster started rebuilding the talent pipeline when he came on board, but he did so while keeping a stable of decent vets and making a run at the playoffs. Lots of fans start counting the rebuild at the Iggy trade, but it really began much earlier with the Regehr trade (which was not as bad as many have suggested).

Now that the MacBackup experiment is over (and kudos to the Flames for giving the vet a legit shot before letting Ramo take over), we can see if Ramo can be a league average goalie.

And if he is, we are WAY ahead of the Oilers

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#67 SmellOfVictory
November 03 2013, 09:41AM
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beloch wrote:

Just watched the Oiler-Wings game... Man. Watching a slaughter like that really gives you some perspective.

1. Hartley is a GOD compared to Dallas Eakins.
2. It is a long way down to rock-bottom from where the Flames currently sit.
3. We should be thankful for the job Feaster's been doing.

Absolutely. I love Hartley as a coach; the only thing he does that drives me nuts is his treatment of Backlund. Everything else is above average, or at least average (e.g. dressing goons, which every coach in the league does).

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#68 SmellOfVictory
November 03 2013, 09:44AM
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BurningSensation wrote:

I love this assessment, in particular, #2.

When the Oilers bottomed out it was because they were utterly awful (to the complete surpise of their management) - and despite 3 1st overall picks (and the gift of Justin Schultz), the roster remains awful.

In contrast, Feaster started rebuilding the talent pipeline when he came on board, but he did so while keeping a stable of decent vets and making a run at the playoffs. Lots of fans start counting the rebuild at the Iggy trade, but it really began much earlier with the Regehr trade (which was not as bad as many have suggested).

Now that the MacBackup experiment is over (and kudos to the Flames for giving the vet a legit shot before letting Ramo take over), we can see if Ramo can be a league average goalie.

And if he is, we are WAY ahead of the Oilers

Have to disagree on the Regehr trade. That trade was terrible. It would be palatable if there had been no 2nd rounder going to Buffalo for Byron, but as it stands it's pretty gross.

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#69 Baalzamon
November 03 2013, 09:54AM
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Blair Jones is currently averaging nearly four shots per game. Even Horak doesn't approach that pace. (Jones also has 7 points in 7 games, which is also nice)

I think it may be time for a Knight callup. No points last night, but he's been real steady for the Heat.

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#70 T&A4Flames
November 03 2013, 10:43AM
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aloudoun wrote:

Just when it seems it can't get any worse for the Oilers… it does. I honestly can't think of how they can possibly fix this. They have no depth, no defence, no goaltending and no character or drive on that team. The culture of losing is hard to break... Happy to be a Flames fan right now :)

And apparently no interest in trading anything of value (which seems limited to begin with at the moment). The only value they may move would be their 1st but given its current position, maybe not that either. Hemsky, yea, he should bring the top line D they want.

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#71 T&A4Flames
November 03 2013, 10:44AM
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Anyone hear if Joey Mac cleared waivers or not?

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#72 T&A4Flames
November 03 2013, 10:45AM
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coachedpotatoe wrote:

This of course would mean rolling four lines. I still don't how a guy like Hartley can't get this especially with a team in rebuild mold.

With a skilled but two way forward like Stemp injured for at least two more weeks his replacement needs to be a similar forward; by now it has to be clear that if you play McG or Jackman that you limit your forwards you can play. Bring up a kid who can skate and has some offensive upside and has demonstrated he understands how to play a little d. Heck even bring up one of the journeymen forwards as one last look; Byron, BJones or even the big guy we have given up on(brain cramp I can't remember his name) Anything has to be better than watching this.(except watching the oilers)

Knight would look good beside Backs. One can move to the wing. Backs played wing beside Berglund in Sweden during the lockout and killed it.

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#73 seve927
November 03 2013, 11:29AM
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Justin Azevedo wrote:

he's garbage and anyone who thinks otherwise is wrong. i'm sure he's a great guy but he doesn't help you win hockey games.

Just curious Justin, what would the coaches response typically be when your mom pointed this out?

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#74 Veggie Dog
November 03 2013, 11:31AM
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SmellOfVictory wrote:

Have to disagree on the Regehr trade. That trade was terrible. It would be palatable if there had been no 2nd rounder going to Buffalo for Byron, but as it stands it's pretty gross.

Can we stop beating the Regehr dead-horse. It was in a different era when we were saddled with so many NTCs and high cap contracts that we were up against it. Regehr was past his best, and we unloaded Kotalik on the hapless Sabres. Even if Sutter is mindlessly attached to him, we would not be appreciably better with him, and in any case, that ship sailed 2.5 years ago.

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#75 Caleb
November 03 2013, 11:35AM
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T&A4Flames wrote:

Anyone hear if Joey Mac cleared waivers or not?

cleared

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#76 Justin Azevedo
November 03 2013, 11:36AM
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seve927 wrote:

Just curious Justin, what would the coaches response typically be when your mom pointed this out?

I don't really care what the coaches response would be, honestly. until macdonald goes above .915, i'm right. also, I think you should probably consider never commenting like that again.

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#77 Justin Azevedo
November 03 2013, 11:40AM
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@Veggie Dog

I don't think there's any reason to let it go considering buffalo got more in return for him than the flames did even though he was considerably worse in buffalo

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#78 SmellOfVictory
November 03 2013, 11:47AM
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Veggie Dog wrote:

Can we stop beating the Regehr dead-horse. It was in a different era when we were saddled with so many NTCs and high cap contracts that we were up against it. Regehr was past his best, and we unloaded Kotalik on the hapless Sabres. Even if Sutter is mindlessly attached to him, we would not be appreciably better with him, and in any case, that ship sailed 2.5 years ago.

The other dude brought up the Regehr trade, so I responded. Kotalik also has absolutely nothing to do with Byron.

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#79 ?
November 03 2013, 11:56AM
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Veggie Dog wrote:

Can we stop beating the Regehr dead-horse. It was in a different era when we were saddled with so many NTCs and high cap contracts that we were up against it. Regehr was past his best, and we unloaded Kotalik on the hapless Sabres. Even if Sutter is mindlessly attached to him, we would not be appreciably better with him, and in any case, that ship sailed 2.5 years ago.

Still, BUF got 2 second round picks for a broken, slower, and older Regehr than the one the Flames traded to them. If Kotalik was killing the Flames' return to such a degree, the owners should've tried to loan him to a European league team, demoted him to the AHL, bought him out, or just eat up the remaining term on his contract.

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#80 seve927
November 03 2013, 12:02PM
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Justin Azevedo wrote:

I don't really care what the coaches response would be, honestly. until macdonald goes above .915, i'm right. also, I think you should probably consider never commenting like that again.

It was intended to be funny. Sorry to have offended you.

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#81 SVENSANITY
November 03 2013, 12:13PM
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I firmly believe that you need to give a goalie more than a few games in the NHL before you just throw them away. I understand that we're in the business of winning and results are the outcome that drives decisions. However, we are in a rebuild, management has admitted as such. If anyone in management believes this team can sneak into a playoff spot they're not giving themselves realistic expectation and setting realistic goals for this season. Ultimately, Ramo and Berra need to be given games as a tandem they should each have gotten 41 games. Play them in Hartley's little 5 game stretches so they can get a rhythm going and you're going to get a more realistic ideal of what you have. If one proves to be significantly better than role with that pick but until they do just rotate them 5 games in 5 games out and let them gain some confidence in their abilities.

Personally i feel like Ramo has looked okay. He's been hung out to dry on a few goals and he's had one or two weak ones go in as a result of bad positioning which I blame the transition to a smaller surface for. These things can be ironed out though. He has the instincts and reactions that cannot be taught. The fundamentals he can work on. The issue will be confidence and if your god damn coach pulls them out every other game you will end up ruining a goalie.

@WW Trade Gaudreau for Scnieder?... I don't care if you're the drug kingpin of the south west come at me bro! You crey-crey

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#82 Veggie Dog
November 03 2013, 12:14PM
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@SmellOfVictory

I didn't mean necessarily you only, I was just replying to Regehr talk in general. Also, of course Kotalik is part of it. He was in the package. He was expensive, and rubbish. At least Byron is cheap and rubbish.

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#83 kittensandcookies
November 03 2013, 12:22PM
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@BurningSensation

You love this assessment? Virtually every team looks good compared to the 29th place Oilers. Might as well compare the Flames to a junior team.

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#84 BurningSensation
November 03 2013, 12:28PM
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SmellOfVictory wrote:

Have to disagree on the Regehr trade. That trade was terrible. It would be palatable if there had been no 2nd rounder going to Buffalo for Byron, but as it stands it's pretty gross.

I think we 'lose' the Regehr trade - badly - until you factor in that it was the ticket out of cap-relief hell.

Kotalik's contract in particular was weapons grade radioactive.

It was that move though, dealing aging vet, and a huge amount of money to get younger (if not actually better), that defines Feaster as seeing the forest for the trees.

The team was carrying a ton of bad contract money, and in that one move Feaster gave the team breathing room to make changes.

Every move since has been to make the team younger, and/or to collect picks prospects.

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#85 Steve
November 03 2013, 12:58PM
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Bolland injured, we have the solution!! Matty for a 2nd :) Get on it fleester!

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#86 Steve
November 03 2013, 01:03PM
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@burningsensation

Don't forget the langkow deal for steps, that freed cap space as well could return us some young assets if feaster moves steps at the deadline. 2 draft picks could be a realistic return if he continues to play well. That was a good move on feasters part.

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#87 Baalzamom
November 03 2013, 01:13PM
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Steve wrote:

Bolland injured, we have the solution!! Matty for a 2nd :) Get on it fleester!

Call now and your Butler is free.

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#88 exsanguinator
November 03 2013, 01:41PM
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First off, why the hell is Granlund such a hard name for people to spell? It drives me nuts.

Second, the Regehr trade: was good at the time, got rid of him before he truly cratered in Buffalo, got replacement level players at the time for him and got rid of Kotalik's toxic contract. At worse this was an even trade.

Third, (Regehr part 2) the fact that LA got him for 2 second rounders is clearly a trade that had Dutter's finger prints all over it. You can't use that as a measuring stick for the Flames trade. In my mind it was a bad trade for LA and it was an even trade for the Flames. Two separate situations.

And lastly, here's hoping that Ramo and Berra can hold the fort until Brossoit is ready. I like that the Flames rewarded Mac for his play last season but 2 years is 1 year too long. He's not a starter, never will be but a one year deal to reward a guy that did a reasonable job in a pinch would have been fine.

I also want to add that these deals for some players that have such a divided reaction (Wideman, Hudler, heck, even Macdonald) the one thing that unites these moves are the teams that they have come from. Winning teams, with teams that buy in and have measurable success.

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#89 suba steve
November 03 2013, 02:52PM
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@exsanguinator

Joey Mac is on a 1 year deal ($925,000).

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#90 exsanguinator
November 03 2013, 03:41PM
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suba steve wrote:

Joey Mac is on a 1 year deal ($925,000).

Oh, I thought for sure he was on a two year deal. Hooray fact checking!

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#91 Ed Wailin'
November 03 2013, 10:09PM
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re: reggie trade

bear in mind that at that point in history we absolutely reeked of desperation to other gms... it was a ballsy move with no potential PR upside but it removed the handcuffs of "cap hell" allowing the rebuild/"retool" to begin.

also, I'm stoked on Russell right now, keep it up guy!

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