Flames Waive Blair Jones - UPDATE, Flames demote Irving as well

Kent Wilson
February 16 2013 11:02AM

As per Darren Dreger today, the Flames have waived fourth line center Blair Jones, likely with the intention of sending him to the minors. 

This is a fairly surprising move. Jones is one of only two natural, NHL-ready centers currrently on the active roster (Stajan is the other). And while he hasn't put up any points, the former Lightning has been capable enough in a support role. His on-ice SH% of 2.27% probably makes him seem worse than he is, but then the Flames also have Blake Comeau who is at 3.03% but also a team worst -19.20 corsi/60 (Jones is even with a 45% zone start). 

This sort of suggests Sven Baertschi is ready to return, but then I don't know why they'd chose to demote Jones in response. Steve Begin (frequent healthy scratch) and the aforementioned Blake Comeau (who has been simply bad) are more natural candidates to sit on the waiver wire. Heck, Baertschi himself would be more suited to a plane ride to Abbotesford, either for a conditioning stint or because he was only playing 5 minutes a night when he was in the line-up anyways.

The other possibility is this is some sort of paper transaction, enacted due to some vague rule in the CBA. Even then, I don't know why it would be Blair Jones the team would choose to expose and not, you know, 34-year old free agent, no one will pick him up anyways, Steve Begin.

Anyways, let's see how this plays out. 

UPDATE - Flames announce Leland Irving has been re-assigned to Abbotsford today with Danny Taylor being recalled in his place. As predicted, last night pretty much killed any hopes Irving had of being an NHL goalie here in Calgary.

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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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#102 ChinookArch
February 17 2013, 03:03PM
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Kent Wilson wrote:

I...I don't know. And I was a Comeau defender a bit last year.

I was really excited about Comeau getting better results this year, after last year where he couldn't catch a break. To this point, beyond the first few games he's been impossible to defend. Bad decsion making, no clue where to be ont he ice, falling on many of his shifts. He has been bad.

What's interesting is that according to Feaster he instisted on a 1 year contract last offseason to prove he was better than he showed. He should have taken the 2 year offer.

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#103 Kevin R
February 17 2013, 03:05PM
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Captain Ron wrote:

I liked having Jones on our team and I agree on his 3rd - 4th line option status. This year though I thought I was watching "Jones Lite" at times when I compared him to the player he was last year. Not sure I agree on his mid round pick value though but it would depend on the buying teams situation somewhat I guess. I also firmly believe that this move has more to do with the coach than the GM. Without NHL quality goaltending we aren't going anywhere in the standings so I'm not getting to bent out of shape over any of this. What happens over the next month should go a long way to deciding what the real direction of this team is. I am predicting a busy trade deadline for Feaster as a seller.

Considering what we did to Dallas here they may be out to prove something. It could get ugly unless MacDonald stands on his head in this one. It is times like this when we really need Kipper when he is on his game.

I know, I think many are frustrated in not being let in on the direction of the team. Maybe if Feaster could be honest about where the team is and where its headed, so many of us wouldnt speculate so much & assume the worst. We shall soon see if Joey can pull a Kipper lite.

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#104 Kevin R
February 17 2013, 03:05PM
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Captain Ron wrote:

I liked having Jones on our team and I agree on his 3rd - 4th line option status. This year though I thought I was watching "Jones Lite" at times when I compared him to the player he was last year. Not sure I agree on his mid round pick value though but it would depend on the buying teams situation somewhat I guess. I also firmly believe that this move has more to do with the coach than the GM. Without NHL quality goaltending we aren't going anywhere in the standings so I'm not getting to bent out of shape over any of this. What happens over the next month should go a long way to deciding what the real direction of this team is. I am predicting a busy trade deadline for Feaster as a seller.

Considering what we did to Dallas here they may be out to prove something. It could get ugly unless MacDonald stands on his head in this one. It is times like this when we really need Kipper when he is on his game.

I know, I think many are frustrated in not being let in on the direction of the team. Maybe if Feaster could be honest about where the team is and where its headed, so many of us wouldnt speculate so much & assume the worst. We shall soon see if Joey can pull a Kipper lite.

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#105 Alt
February 17 2013, 03:06PM
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IMO the next 5 games are the season and will dictate which way the ship get,s turned.There has to be more to these moves than meets the eye,but Feaster is not exactly dazzling anyone with any detectable intellect.That statement about them targeting McDonald was just plain silliness.

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#106 Willi P
February 17 2013, 03:30PM
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Kent Wilson wrote:

Calgary Herald.

Thanks Kent.

Reading between the lines, there appears to have been a bad choice made by Mr. Jones. Can't see any other good reason for this to happen now.

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#107 Captain Ron
February 17 2013, 04:00PM
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@ Alt

Yeah Feaster does have a way of backing himself into a corner at times with some of his comments.

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#108 thymebalm
February 17 2013, 05:12PM
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You guys are so shortsighted to think that Jay Feaster didn't have a radar on McDonald. The Flames have NHL scouts that have a ranking on EVERY player playing in the NHL. Where they rank McDonald in that mix compared to their own assets likely put him on the radar for our NHL scouts when we started to have real goaltending troubles. How is that so hard to believe?

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#109 Alt
February 17 2013, 07:20PM
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thymebalm wrote:

You guys are so shortsighted to think that Jay Feaster didn't have a radar on McDonald. The Flames have NHL scouts that have a ranking on EVERY player playing in the NHL. Where they rank McDonald in that mix compared to their own assets likely put him on the radar for our NHL scouts when we started to have real goaltending troubles. How is that so hard to believe?

How about the fact that he,s been injured for a year.Seems a stretch to me that scouts were interested in that scenario

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#110 Captain Ron
February 17 2013, 08:00PM
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thymebalm wrote:

You guys are so shortsighted to think that Jay Feaster didn't have a radar on McDonald. The Flames have NHL scouts that have a ranking on EVERY player playing in the NHL. Where they rank McDonald in that mix compared to their own assets likely put him on the radar for our NHL scouts when we started to have real goaltending troubles. How is that so hard to believe?

He's a 30ish year old career backup goalie who was recovering from a herniated disc. Why would they have him on their radar? Not like he was great or anything before the injury. Also no shortage of goalies in our system that are showing some promise for the future. And then there's Ramo who will most certainly be here next season.

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#111 thymebalm
February 18 2013, 08:54PM
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Couldn't they have had a meeting that was went something like

Jay "Kipper is great, but what if he goes down?"

Weis "Well, we got all these goalies we can try but I can't give you any guarantees that they'll stick: Irving, Karlsson, Taylor, Brust"

Jay "Ok, what if that doesn't work?"

Weis "Well, if that doesn't work there are going to be a bunch of tweeners moving through the waiver wire we can grab in the short term, McDonald, Danis, some other ones, i dunno"

Jay "Ok that sounds great, Can I trade Kiprusoff yet?"

Weis "Not yet, sir. Sorry."

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