POST-GAME: All Good Things are Wild and Free!

Vintage Flame
March 22 2013 08:59PM

 

They say at the moment when death is imminent there is a sort of calm that comes over the mind, that is liberating and can be described as uninhibeted  freedom.

One has to wonder how enraged Flames fans were tonight, even though the outcome was expected. What would be even more interesting is how it long it took those same fans to experience that numbness, or that wave of liberation as to what exactly is left for this team and where exactly they are going.

Justin titled the FGD: Choose Your Own Path, and I suspect he was making more reference to the fanbase than the team itself. The Flames seem stuck in a path that they can no longer determine, they no longer have that freedom, rather they are on the wild run... kind of like a runaway train?

If you're still reading this, then let's see how it all played out...

The Rundown

I don't think anyone should have been surprised that the Flames came out in this one looking extremely tentative tonight. For the first half of the period, they seemed to be afraid to take any chances in fear that it might cost them on the scoreboard.

Instead, they would play it safe, trying to make the perfect pass which in turn cost them valuable scoring chances because they held the puck far too long. They were fortunate to get their first scoring chance just 17 seconds into the game and then wouldn't see another for ten minutes.

A pretty low event period that almost got interesting when Bouwmeester walked into a slap shot from the blueline, that didn't quite find its way into the net. Almost though.. almost.

When you don't make things happen, things happen against you; and tonight would be no different. At 16:56, Jared Boll (*sigh*) would wire that sniper like slap shot that he is oh so known for, over the shoulder of a helpless Miikka Kiprusoff. In his defense though, he probably wasn't expecting TJ Brodie to cough up the puck in front of him, or for his teammates to sit and watch as, yes, Jared Boll put the Jackets up 1-0.

The Flames edged Columbus 3-2 in scoring chances, but in fairness both of the Jackets chances were higher in quality than any of Calgary's. Calgary went 65% in the faceoff circle and still got out-shot 9-7, but that's what happens when you are tentative and are looking for the "perfect" play all the time.

Not sure what was said in the dressing room during the intermission, or who did the talking, but someone needed to respond in the second period.

When you need someone to answer the bell, you rarely have to look past Curtis Glencross. Undoubtedly, Calgary's best line once again to the reins of leadership with Stempniak  doing the majority of the work and Glenx doing what #Scorface does best... pumping up that shooting percentage.

For the next 11 minutes, the Flames would bask in the glow that was their tying feat. And then reality would have them come crashing down harder than Jared Boll running Kiprusoff for the third time of the night.

Over the course of a a minute and fifteen seconds, starting at the 13:05 mark, Columbus would put three consecutively passed Kipper, stomping on the hearts and most likely any hope that was held by any Flames fan out there.

The start of the third wasn't pretty as the team came out looking like they were short-handed. Let's face it the team's play at even strength has seemed short-handed at the best of times. If the 3 goals in 1:15 wasn't enough, Kipprusoff looked absolutely shell-shocked after the opening five minutes.

It would take nothing short of a Herculean feat to dig themselves out of this one. Since the Hockey Gods are clearly not behind the Flames, there would be no Herculean anything....

I took an intermission of my own until I was snapped back to consciousness when Colton Gillies extended the deficit to four. At this point, the clock couldn't run out fast enough....

Why the Flames Lost...

I'm not sure how many different ways we can go over this. Night after night, game after game, it's the same old song and dance.

 

Red Warrior

Tonight I am proud to say we are bringing back the "Red Warrior". It's just too bad that for the second night in a row., no one really deserves it.

However, given that we are bringing back the warrior honours, I can't let it debut with no one.

So I'm going with Curtis Glencross tonight. He got the Flames only goal and has been the one guy on this team that has much of anything left to offer.

Now unlike an earlier misconception that was blatantly taken out of context on twitter earlier today, I am not saying that anyone on this team doesn't care or isn't just as troubled about the losses piling up faster than PETA can protest the latest videogame. What I am saying is that night in and night out, Curtis has come to play for this team.

For the past month.. hell, for the past 4 years, fans have taken their turns at throwing pot-shots at various players on the team; from Iginla right down to Kiprusoff. The one name I can honestly say I've never seen thrown around when it comes to effort, is Glencross.

For that reason, and twitter be damned... Tonight's Red Warrior is Curtis Glencross.

Scoring Chances

Flames chances:

BJs chances:

 

Scoring Chance Summary

Team Period Time Note Home Away State
Away 1 19:27 Iginla shot 10 16 22 7 51 72 10 24 12 5 26 34 5v5
Away 1 10:07 Bouwmeester one-timer 42 13 11 7 51 72 18 22 20 4 7 34 5v5
Home 1 6:37 Anisimov slot 42 13 11 7 51 72 18 15 22 5 26 34 5v5
Home 1 3:04 Boll goal 42 13 11 6 47 72 13 17 40 5 26 34 5v5
Away 1 0:17 Cervenka shot (PP) 18 13 6 33 72   10 20 40 4 7 34 4v5
Home 2 19:14 Johnson shot 18 19 71 7 51 72 10 24 12 4 26 34 5v5
Away 2 15:37 Glencross goal 9 24 13 6 47 72 18 22 20 4 7 34 5v5
Away 2 14:16 Cammalleri slot 18 19 71 20 33 72 13 17 40 5 26 34 5v5
Away 2 14:08 Iginla in close 18 19 71 20 33 72 12 13 40 4 7 34 5v5
Away 2 12:16 Cammalleri shot 9 24 40 7 51 72 13 17 40 5 26 34 5v5
Home 2 11:45 scramble 42 13 11 20 33 72 18 22 20 4 7 34 5v5
Home 2 9:13 slot shot 10 16 22 6 47 72 13 17 40 5 26 34 5v5
Away 2 7:24 Begin post 9 24 40 6 47 72 15 16 25 6 27 34 5v5
Home 2 6:55 Foligno goal 18 19 71 7 51 72 13 17 40 5 26 34 5v5
Home 2 6:05 Foligno slot goal 18 19 71 7 51 72 13 17 40 5 26 34 5v5
Home 2 5:41 Anisimov goal 42 13 11 20 33 72 18 22 20 4 7 34 5v5
Home 2 3:44 Johnson high slot (PP) 16 18 71 7 51 72 20 40 4 5 34   5v4
Away 2 1:08 Cervenka in close 9 24 40 6 47 72 10 24 12 4 7 34 5v5
Home 3 19:16 Brassard (PP) 16 18 71 7 51 72 18 22 4 26 34   5v4
Home 3 17:02 Atkinson in close 10 13 11 7 51 72 10 24 12 4 26 34 5v5
Away 3 16:00 Cammalleri high slot 9 24 40 6 47 72 13 17 40 5 7 34 5v5
Away 3 9:14 Cervenka slot 18 19 71 20 33 72 10 24 12 4 7 34 5v5
Home 3 8:33 Calvert drive 42 13 11 6 47 72 18 22 20 4 7 34 5v5
Home 3 6:46 Gillies goal 10 16 22 20 33 72 13 17 40 4 7 34 5v5
Away 3 4:37 Jackman drive 9 24 40 6 47 72 15 16 25 6 27 34 5v5
Home 3 1:56 Johnson shot 18 19 71 7 51 72 15 16 25 7 26 34 5v5
Away 3 1:13 Wideman (PP) 10 42 7 51 72   10 24 12 5 26 34 4v5

 

Blue Jackets Player Summary

# Player EV     PP     SH    
6 NIKITIN, NIKITA 17:33 3 5 02:18 0 0 00:56 0 1
7 JOHNSON, JACK 14:40 6 3 05:53 2 0 02:26 0 1
9 GILLIES, COLTON 12:00 0 6 00:00 0 0 00:00 0 0
10 LETESTU, MARK 15:29 3 1 00:11 0 0 02:06 0 1
11 CALVERT, MATT 11:01 6 1 00:00 0 0 00:16 0 0
13 ATKINSON, CAM 11:25 6 2 00:01 0 0 00:44 0 1
16 BRASSARD, DERICK 12:06 2 1 04:45 2 0 00:00 0 0
18 UMBERGER, RJ 12:38 4 3 04:31 2 0 00:44 0 1
19 JOHANSEN, RYAN 12:49 4 3 03:22 0 0 00:12 0 0
20 ERIXON, TIM 15:51 3 3 01:55 0 0 00:00 0 0
22 PROSPAL, VINNY 13:03 2 1 03:29 0 0 00:00 0 0
24 MACKENZIE, DEREK 12:19 0 6 00:00 0 0 00:42 0 0
33 AUCOIN, ADRIAN 17:53 3 3 00:00 0 0 00:50 0 1
40 BOLL, JARED 11:34 0 5 00:00 0 0 00:00 0 0
42 ANISIMOV, ARTEM 08:48 5 1 02:53 0 0 02:00 0 1
47 PROUT, DALTON 17:25 3 5 00:17 0 0 00:06 0 0
51 TYUTIN, FEDOR 13:54 6 3 05:37 2 0 02:26 0 1
71 FOLIGNO, NICK 12:42 4 3 04:48 2 0 00:00 0 0
72 BOBROVSKY, SERGEI   12 11   2 0   0 2

Flames Scoring Summary

# Player EV     PP     SH    
4 BOUWMEESTER, JAY 16:37 5 6 00:58 1 0 06:18 0 2
5 GIORDANO, MARK 18:49 4 5 02:13 1 0 04:34 0 1
6 SARICH, CORY 12:19 2 0 00:00 0 0 00:43 0 0
7 BRODIE, TJ 16:00 6 5 01:09 1 0 01:33 0 0
10 CERVENKA, ROMAN 14:51 3 2 02:21 2 0 00:00 0 0
12 IGINLA, JAROME 14:45 4 2 02:13 1 0 00:00 0 0
13 CAMMALLERI, MIKE 13:51 4 5 01:01 0 0 00:00 0 0
15 JACKMAN, TIM 08:37 2 2 00:00 0 0 00:00 0 0
16 MCGRATTAN, BRIAN 08:44 2 1 00:00 0 0 00:00 0 0
17 COMEAU, BLAKE 13:50 3 5 00:19 0 0 02:06 0 0
18 STAJAN, MATT 11:51 2 4 00:00 0 0 02:47 0 1
20 GLENCROSS, CURTIS 10:21 2 3 00:50 1 0 03:22 0 1
22 STEMPNIAK, LEE 12:03 2 4 00:00 0 0 02:40 0 1
24 HUDLER, JIRI 15:07 3 2 02:13 1 0 00:00 0 0
25 BEGIN, STEVE 07:50 2 1 00:00 0 0 01:51 0 0
26 WIDEMAN, DENNIS 20:35 3 8 02:24 1 0 02:52 0 1
27 SMITH, DEREK 13:17 2 0 00:00 0 0 00:00 0 0
34 KIPRUSOFF, MIIKKA   11 12   2 0   0 2
40 TANGUAY, ALEX 13:46 4 5 01:09 1 0 03:14 0 1

 

Blue Jackets Period Summary Scoring Chances

Period Totals EV PP 5v3 PP SH 5v3 SH
1 2 3 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
2 7 6 6 6 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
3 5 4 4 3 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0

Flames Period Summary Scoring Chances

Period Totals EV PP 5v3 PP SH 5v3 SH
1 3 2 2 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2 6 7 6 6 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
3 4 5 3 4 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0

 

Sum It Up

I'm going to keep this one short tonight. Here is the hard facts of reality.

The biggest thing that plagues this organization is probably the hardest slap in it's face. This team just isn't good. It's not that it's not as good as they thought, they just aren't good... period.

When the Flames are fortunate to catch a tired team that is is forced to play their back-ups on the second night of back-to-backs, they still have to be at their best and have a mistake free night to maybe pull out the "big win". However if the Calgary Flames are unfortunate enough to face a team, any team, that has it together and is on their game, then they just don't have a chance.

That might be tough to hear, but I'm sure it's even tougher for the boys to come to realize. But like I said before once the wildness of that realization comes to pass, there will be that relief, that calmness, that freedom to finally focus on what they need to do.

It's not going to be a fun plane ride home, but at least they are going home. There is no doubt now, that for Murray, Ken and Jay.. it's decision time.

Flames next opponent will be the St. Louis Blues on Sunday at 6:00 pm. Catch the game on SNET-W and the Fan 960.

E42f2ca09dfb26046c3060ff46473aff
Vintage Flame is a Calgary based sports junkie that prefers to call hockey a "religion" rather than an addiction. He believes there are two types of hockey fans. Those who cheer for the Flames, and those who don't understand the sport yet. Follow Vintage_Flame on Twitter
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#101 Kurt
March 24 2013, 09:52AM
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Jeff In Lethbridge wrote:

2 to 3 years of pain? so you are a proponent of retooling on the fly with tinkering? because, if the Flames sell off their six best (i.e. complete rebuild) then i am pretty sure you can expect a lot more then three years of 'pain'. for evidence, just look at the joke up north! what are they at, 8 years of 'pain' and counting?

Much like us Edmonton was in denial and not rebuilding for a few years of suck... So their rebuild started in 2009 making this the third year. Taylor hall was the year they traded away all vets and brought in transition players to fill in for a few years while they build.

You can't say its 8 years, otherwise you'd have to say our rebuild is already 4 years in.

I predict next year the oilers are decent/good. So that's 3 years of pure a$$ followed by 2 years of playoff bubbling followed by powerhouse for 5 years. Oilers are on track. If we start now we can be where they are now in 3 years.

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#102 RexLibris
March 24 2013, 09:54AM
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@jeremywilhelm

I've read them both, and the CoH one by Bruce McCurdy.

I feel the same way about the Ewanyk signing that I did of the Pelss signing. These players do have value and while they can be found in free agency, you usually pay more that way and have to bid against other organizations.

Internal options are almost always preferable.

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#103 RexLibris
March 24 2013, 09:58AM
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@Kurt

Sorry to interrupt, but the Oilers didn't really trade away a great number of veterans. Simply put, they didn't have many left who were worth anything.

This is partially why many Oilers fans have been saying that the Flames could have sped up the process by beginning it a year ago when Iginla and Kiprusoff had greater market value.

I would suggest that 2013 marks Year One for the Flames - with the provision that this depends on Feaster's, King's, and Edwards' next moves. If they try to pull a quick turnaround, we may need to re-evaluate.

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#104 Kurt
March 24 2013, 10:31AM
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RexLibris wrote:

Sorry to interrupt, but the Oilers didn't really trade away a great number of veterans. Simply put, they didn't have many left who were worth anything.

This is partially why many Oilers fans have been saying that the Flames could have sped up the process by beginning it a year ago when Iginla and Kiprusoff had greater market value.

I would suggest that 2013 marks Year One for the Flames - with the provision that this depends on Feaster's, King's, and Edwards' next moves. If they try to pull a quick turnaround, we may need to re-evaluate.

Ok we'll I'm not totally up to speed on oiler stuff (I try not to!). But my point stands that their rebuild isn't dragging on for 8 years like Flame fans like to proclaim. So many around here point up north and laugh and say its taking 6-7+ years. But they didn't really start a planned rebuild that long ago.

It's very much like us. We will miss for 4 years now. So do we say we are 4 years into a rebuild now??? No that's ridiculous.

I'm so tired of fans here pointing up north and saying how long it's taking and that its not working as an excuse to not do this proper. This is a pivotal point in flames history and if we just do a half a$$ed job because we don't have the guts to endure a few years of pain, or use false facts about other teams like the Oilers then we will change just enough to get back to being a perennial bubble team for eternity.

Personally I don't think I can take it... I'm so tired of mediocrity. At least in the past we could laugh at the Oilers. Now they are gonna start mocking us and its gonna suck. Lets fix this right.

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#105 Danger
March 24 2013, 10:34AM
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Derzie wrote:

John Davidson was available in the summer. Calgary ignored the slam dunk opportunity. He went to Columbus. Only appropriate that the Jackets drive the nail in our coffin on their rise back to respectability. Nobody from Edwards on down deserves to stay in their position to guide the Flames back to the light. We missed a big chance this summer.

Couldn't agree more. Only problem is you can't fire the owner!

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#106 Kevin R
March 24 2013, 10:52AM
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RexLibris wrote:

Sorry to interrupt, but the Oilers didn't really trade away a great number of veterans. Simply put, they didn't have many left who were worth anything.

This is partially why many Oilers fans have been saying that the Flames could have sped up the process by beginning it a year ago when Iginla and Kiprusoff had greater market value.

I would suggest that 2013 marks Year One for the Flames - with the provision that this depends on Feaster's, King's, and Edwards' next moves. If they try to pull a quick turnaround, we may need to re-evaluate.

Curious Rex, if the Oiler rebuild technically start in 2009-10, what players do they have today & be considered part of the new team moving forward? I think Horcoff, Hemsky, Gagner, Whitney, not sure who else. There were really no high end assets to trade to jump start it quicker. Saying this because we are seeing the Flames at the same crossroads as the Oilers. So if we consider a major rebuild for the Flames, how does that compare to the Oilers witht he pieces to start with & the pieces to kickstart it with. The players to be part of the future, & I do caveat this as being a very debatable list amongst Flame fans, would be Sven, Brodie, Backlund, Gio(I think we have to keep him), Glenx(I think he should be our next Captain), Ramo, Hudler, Wideman. I almost think we can include Gaudreau on this list because I truly think next to Sven, he is our #2 best prospect coming up & will be playing on the Flames within the next year or 2.

So at last I come to my point. Not only do I feel we have a few more pieces moving forward than the Oilers did, but look at we have for the kickstart as compared to what the Oilers did: Iggy, JBO, Kipper, Cammi, Stemps, Cerevenka(I think he can be worth a 2nd or 3rd rounder to a team like Ottawa or Dallas). Now I dont want to get into returns because thats when we turn from beer drinking buddies to throwing beer at each other. But I do feel there are at least 2 & maybe 3 1st rounders coming out of that, in an excellent draft. I think in 2 years this team can make improvements & 3 years challenge for playoffs/bubble again, except we will be young & full of potential. Now of course this is predicated on smart drafting & trade decisions by hockey people. I still dont understand people people bashing our drafting these last few years. We had the most representation the Flames have had in years at the last World Jr's & we have some decent kids all with a shot of becoming solid NHL's. Jankowski is questionable but I am satisfied about our drafting moving forward. The thing Feaster scares the hell out of me is how well he can extract overpayments out of the above list & quit signing stupid pidly contracts. The Sarich, Babchuk deals add up to a very solid 3-4 dman or a top 6 forward. Depth dmen, for what??? Nothing a Breen or Carson couldnt do.

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#107 meat1
March 24 2013, 11:18AM
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I realize that we can't fire the owner, but we certainly can stop supporting his product. These next days are crucial. The miss on John Davidson was enormous. KK and Feaster are more concerned with keeping their own jobs than making the correct organizational moves absolutely needed for some long-term success. Hartley, too, however the job of the coach ultimately is to win with the cast assembled.

I have no fingernails left and there's 10 days to go. I would feel SOOO much better if we had better management leading us. Then again, with better management we wouldn't be in this mess...

We missed JD. But I would be happy to replace KK with Brendan Shanahan, replace Feaster with Ron Hextall...but that is discussion for another day. We're about to 'dance with the one's that brought us' to where we are. Hold on tight.

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#108 RexLibris
March 24 2013, 11:43AM
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@Kevin R

"There were really no high end assets to trade to jump start it quicker."

I've been saying this since the Flames rebuild argument began. The Flames have or had assets the Oilers did not.

Oilers veterans who are in the picture at the time of the rebuild were Gagner, Smid, Hemsky and Horcoff.

The Flames veterans who get grandfathered into a new roster, in my view, are Glencross, Giordano, Hudler, Tanguay, Backlund and Stajan. Glencross will probably need to be traded further down the road. You'll need a Glencross in four years' time, but in four years' time that player won't be Glencross. Best to use him when you need him and sell high before his value crashes (Kiprusoff as an example). Tanguay has limited value and the team that provides the most for right now are the Flames. Same with Stajan and Hudler. Those three are the line you roll out to face the murderer's row of opposition. They're older and can handle it, the ice time won't cost them any developmental lessons, and it provides breathing room for any younger players.

Baertschi needs to spend an entire season in the AHL. Don't rush him. Fill his roster spot with a half-way decent UFA (LW version of Stempniak, for instance).

Same with Gaudreau. Let him finish his college career. I wouldn't put on the Flames roster for four years. The AHL roster in three years, perhaps. You have everything to gain by letting them mature slowly, and everything to lose by rushing them.

"Now I dont want to get into returns because thats when we turn from beer drinking buddies to throwing beer at each other" lol, agreed!

I don't think that any team will be willing to forfeit their 1st or even 2nd in this year's draft to the extent you mention.

Let me put it this way: when the last CBA was ratified with the salary cap, the successful teams were those that prioritized the draft and understood the value of a continual pipeline of talent.

Fast forward eight years and those same lessons apply with recent history being a very persuasive tutor for the slow kids at the back of the class (Leafs, Oilers, etc). With the cap set to drop next year, I don't see why it would be in any other team's interest to give up those picks, especially for this draft year.

A savvy GM would negotiate higher draft assets by offsetting the term: delay the year involved in exchange for a move up.

This brings us very close to discussing returns, which we've agreed is verboten, so I'll move on to Feaster and his habits.

He seems to prefer to create complex packages in the belief that diversifying the return protects against the risk of a failed trade. Think of the Cammaleri deal, for example. Including the 2nd got back Ramo. Not a bad exchange, but I suspect that if one were to break the deal down into it's component parts, Cammalleri for Bourque straight across would have been possible. And Ramo for a 3rd round pick, or lower, is probably closer to market value at the time. Remember, Lindback went for a 2nd at the time, and he was playing in the NHL as a backup.

Then look at the Regehr deal. Feaster felt he had to include his toxic asset in Kotalik wrapped in an incentive, the 2nd round pick, all under the pretense of the Regehr move so that he could return Smith and Butler - a 3rd pairing defenseman and an AHL level prospect/project.

Then let's look way back to the Brad Richards deal, probably the best comparable we have for Feaster dealing a franchise player. He got back Mike Smith (considered a bust until coming to Phoenix and working with Sean Burke), Jeff Halpern (recently put on waivers), Jussi Jokinen and a 4th round pick. The pick was traded to the Oilers and became Kyle Bigos, a college defenseman.

Now, I'm not certain that Feaster is the one doing the real negotiating on this alleged Iginla deal, but I would suggest that looking at those trades, and weighing that against the Flames management's preference to avoid a total rebuild, one cold expect that if any assets are moved they are going to be in exchange for a variety of assets returning in pursuit of a more immediate benefit.

Feaster has not made a habit of prioritizing draft picks as compensation for relinquishing players.

I will be most interested in seeing not just what Feaster does, but what he attempts to do. This will communicate the management's ultimate strategy and reveal the results of their internal assessment of the team. If they try a quick fix, then we know they believe the problems to be superficial. If not, then they have ascertained that the issues are more systemic.

April should be a very emotional month for Flames fans. In all sincerity, I don't envy you the next six weeks.

Draft day could be another story, though.

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#109 RexLibris
March 24 2013, 11:51AM
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@Kurt

Getting the fan narrative right in the beginning is important.

Fans in Edmonton knew when things really began, and it drove me insane how those outside would say that the team has been rebuilding for ten years.

You don't rebuild a team by offer sheeting Dustin Penner, or trying to trade for Dany Heatley, or giving Marian Hossa a 10-year contract offer.

That is what teams do when they are in denial, and a good portion of that was due to the ownership issues with the Oilers at the time.

The EIG saved the Oilers. They deserve more credit than they may ever receive, but financial restrictions caused a kind of incipient short-sightedness that became habitual.

The end result was that Robbie Schremp, Taylor Chorney and Robert Nilsson were considered some of their best prospects.

Not a good place to be.

The Flames rebuild may start this April. Depending on what their management does by way of trade. If they prioritize the draft and publicly acknowledge that they need to take some time to straighten things out, then set the clocks.

If not, if they purport to be able to quickly set things right with a few deft moves and signings here and there...

If they couldn't trade well or sign high-end free-agents before, why on earth would they be able to do it now?

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#110 Kurt
March 24 2013, 12:15PM
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RexLibris wrote:

Getting the fan narrative right in the beginning is important.

Fans in Edmonton knew when things really began, and it drove me insane how those outside would say that the team has been rebuilding for ten years.

You don't rebuild a team by offer sheeting Dustin Penner, or trying to trade for Dany Heatley, or giving Marian Hossa a 10-year contract offer.

That is what teams do when they are in denial, and a good portion of that was due to the ownership issues with the Oilers at the time.

The EIG saved the Oilers. They deserve more credit than they may ever receive, but financial restrictions caused a kind of incipient short-sightedness that became habitual.

The end result was that Robbie Schremp, Taylor Chorney and Robert Nilsson were considered some of their best prospects.

Not a good place to be.

The Flames rebuild may start this April. Depending on what their management does by way of trade. If they prioritize the draft and publicly acknowledge that they need to take some time to straighten things out, then set the clocks.

If not, if they purport to be able to quickly set things right with a few deft moves and signings here and there...

If they couldn't trade well or sign high-end free-agents before, why on earth would they be able to do it now?

Agree completely Rex. My big fear is that mgmt/ownership will try the Toronto style fast track rebuild. That's for sure the overwhelming sense I get from fans. People have given in to the reality of rebuilding but want to do it fast and with very little pain. Some people are talking about doing it smart and being back in the playoff hunt NEXT year... Sigh.

For some reason we seem to fear an Oilers rebuild like the plague.... Maybe I'm more supportive of a deep/proper rebuild because I have a lot of Oiler buddies. I have witnessed their emotional response firsthand. Before Taylor hall they were beat down and dead (like us now). The past few years, of scorched earth rebuild have been laughable to us outsiders. But my Oiler buddies are jacked. Sometimes frustrated yes, but generally so excited and hopeful. I want that hope. I think we will be surprised with how exciting it is to cheer for Jonathan druin or Nate McKinnon instead of some old declining veterans.

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