FGD: THE JETS, SON!

Byron Bader
January 16 2014 02:55PM

Tonight, after a brief two game road trip out east that saw the team travel roughly 8,000 km in three days, the Calgary Flames (16-25-6) return home for one game against the Winnipeg Jets (20-23-5) before going out on another two-game road trip. Puck drops at 7 pm MT on Sportsnet West.

In their last game, the Flames lost their eighth game in ten games, going down 4-2 to the Nashville Predators on Tuesday night. These stretches are expected from a team penciled in to finish in the bottom 3 at the start of the season.

The Jets, much better than the Flames on paper, haven't been much better than the Flames statistically. They are three games under .500 on the year and are 4-6-0 in their last ten. The problems have been ample for the Jets this year. Ryan Lambert talked about this at great length recently.

For me, the conference move this year might be the biggest issue. Moving from the horrible Southeast division of the subpar Eastern conference to the newly formed Central Division of the Western Conference has really hurt their bid for decency and a playoff appearance.  

Rather than facing Florida, Tampa and Carolina multiple times a year, the Jets now find themselves in a conference with Chicago, St. Louis, Colorado and Minnesota. As a result, the Jets currently sit 12th in the West. The Jets, in an attempt to curb part of the storm, rid themselves of head coach Claude Noel and put Paul Maurice in his place late last week. However, regardless of the coaching change, they'll probably still finish no higher than 11th in the West. It's a tough conference.

The Flames and Jets met once already this year, out in Winnipeg. The game was entertaining and was mostly a back and forth affair. The Flames eventually skated away victorious, winning 5-4 in the shootout.

Let's get to the line-ups!

THE LINE-UPS

Via www.dailyfaceoff.com

  • Hudler - Backlund - Galiardi
  • Bouma - Stajan - Stempniak
  • Colborne - Monahan - Byron
  • Westgarth - Street - McGrattan
  • Brodie - Giordano
  • Smid - Butler
  • Wideman - O'Brien
  • Berra

Backs is now on a back-to-back-to-back goal scoring streak (I'm going to keep on adding a back to it until he stops his streak). Amazing stuff on his end. Every line he's played with recently has looked the best by a large margin. I'm not sure what got into his coffee but I like it.

Looking at the third line, I'm curious how Baertschi would be doing currently on a no pressure spot on the third line with Monahan and the speedster, Byron. Colborne's been ok but Sven really brought some vision at times and I would like to see him back up in the near future. Although, as I write that I check Sven's stats in Abby and they have been very underwhelming.

Wideman is being deployed on the 3rd pairing with Shane O'Brien currently. That's...well... that's interesting. I figure he'd run a little bit more favorable than Smid and/or Butler but Hartley must see something. Can't wait for Russell to come back, that is for sure.

THE OPPONENTS

  • Ladd -  Little - Frolik
  • Thorburn - Scheifele - Wheeler
  • Setoguchi - Jokinen - Byfuglien
  • Wright - O'Dell - Peluso
  • Bogosian - Enstrom
  • Stuart - Trouba
  • Pardy - Ellerby
  • Pavelec

That's a different line-up than I was expecting. Evander Kane is out with a hand inury, rumor has it he tried to hold too many stacks of $100 bills this time around and seriously sprained something. Byfuglien is doing the Brent Burns and playing forward rather than defense currently. That third line is an intriguing one to me and I'm curious how it looks.

Pavelec I imagine will get the pipes.

SUM IT UP

Tonight's match-up features the 12th and 13th best teams in the Western Conference. Two teams that are in desperate need of a win. Perhaps the Jets more so as, on paper, they're expected to win more than they do. But this is a Flames blog damn it and the Flames' wins is all we care about. Who cares if those Jets fans want to see their team in the playoffs? It won't happen this year so let's do it Flames. Let's obtain victory.

The two teams combined for eight goals last time out in a good old game of river hockey.  Fingers crossed for another one of those beauties.

Fb039371a1a1b706383cb72243cb4446
Byron has a background in psychology, economics and business and is a business researcher/data analyst by day. His love for hockey is as deep as the ocean is wide. Tell him your questions and let him into your heart. Twitter: @Baderader
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#1 Lordmork
January 16 2014, 03:22PM
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"Let's obtain victory" is truly a battle cry for the ages. If men don't go to war with this on their lips, they should.

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#2 Scary Gary
January 16 2014, 03:39PM
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I'll be there, cheering the flames on through this rebuild; heck tonight might even be a decent game, there are some sub-plots. New coach for the Jets and an interesting third line with Byf; Backlunds scoring streak and will our sheltered third line be exposed (don't get me started on our fourth line)?

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#3 mattyc
January 16 2014, 04:26PM
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Byfuglien is continuing to play forward and not defense.

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#4 cunning_linguist
January 16 2014, 04:53PM
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Flames need to lose this one 6-5 in regulation. Monahan will have a 5 point night, assisting on all 5 of Backlund's goals, to balance out his statistical imbalance between goals and assists. A massive fight will then break out, the aftermath of which sees McGrattan, Westgarth, Galiardi, Butler and O'Brien suspended for the next several games, forcing the Flames to call up Reinhart, Corban Knight, Markus Granlund, Tyler Wotherspoon and Mark Cundari or John Ramage to take their places. After the game, Butler will be traded to Safeway for a Bulova watch or Hoover bagless vaccuum cleaner, a deal the grocery chain will soon come to regret.

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#5 mk
January 16 2014, 05:04PM
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Back to Back's back-to-back-to-back goal streak: do you think he is finally hitting his stride? Is this FINALLY the year the points (40-45ish?) start to match up with his solid play?

Its been a while, but when he was drafted, I remember people saying he was more of a goal-scorer than a play-maker, with both of these skills being secondary to his 3-zone play. Yay? :)

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#6 Baalzamon
January 16 2014, 05:58PM
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@cunning_linguist

lol

Safeway Manager: "Why does the new guy keep giving things away?"

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#7 Kent Wilson
January 16 2014, 05:59PM
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Wideman is being deployed on the 3rd pairing with Shane O'Brien currently. That's...well... that's interesting.

He's struggled a lot since coming back. Being paired with not-Russell or Brodie seems to hurt Wideman.

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#8 T&A4Flames
January 16 2014, 06:46PM
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Klesla back on waivers. Anyone else think that he could 'A' fetch something at the deadline if he's healthy and has a good showing in CGY? Or 'B' be a good candidate for a reclamation project (and cap floor assistance) for a 1 year contract next year this allowing us to move guys like Butler or even Smid for a bigger price?

He's certainly a Burke type player at 6'3" 225lbs.

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#9 T&A4Flames
January 16 2014, 06:48PM
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Hey Kent, when are you guys thinking of doing a deadline primer?

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#10 Lober
January 16 2014, 06:50PM
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The things I would do to get Kane on the flames. Even though he is hurt..

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#11 Jeff In Lethbridge
January 16 2014, 07:09PM
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@cunning_linguist

you must have a time machine! thats amazing! i hope it comes to pass!

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#12 mattyc
January 16 2014, 07:18PM
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nice rebound Berra... geeze...

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#13 Beerzebub
January 16 2014, 07:23PM
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This could get ugly.. We need truculence.

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#14 MontanaMan
January 16 2014, 08:08PM
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Back on the ranch in Montana and not able to see any recent Flames games. Life is good! Watching this game on TV tonight, I feel for some hard working guy shelling out $500 a game to watch this. We all know this is a rebuild and that it will take time and patience, but this is painful. Post Oilympic games will be giveaway tickets from season ticket holders.

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#15 Lober
January 16 2014, 08:10PM
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Patrick Roy Jr. aka Ben Scrivens has let in has let in 4 goals on 26 shots if you needed something to smile about!

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#16 Walter White
January 16 2014, 08:13PM
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mk wrote:

Back to Back's back-to-back-to-back goal streak: do you think he is finally hitting his stride? Is this FINALLY the year the points (40-45ish?) start to match up with his solid play?

Its been a while, but when he was drafted, I remember people saying he was more of a goal-scorer than a play-maker, with both of these skills being secondary to his 3-zone play. Yay? :)

Sell him while he looks good on paper.......

Does anyone have his face off % handy?

WW

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#17 Beerzebub
January 16 2014, 08:22PM
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I hope the line of Westbarf-Street-Grats line stays so we get the most out of Ben. Why won't they bring in Granlund?

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#18 Walter White
January 16 2014, 08:26PM
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Walter White wrote:

Sell him while he looks good on paper.......

Does anyone have his face off % handy?

WW

Let me help you out; 46.8%

McGrattan; 50% westgarth; 50%

WW

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#19 bubba
January 16 2014, 08:33PM
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if Burke will get a haircut , the flames will start to win....trust me on this

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#20 SB
January 16 2014, 08:48PM
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Have the flames won a game wearing their new jersey ??

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#21 Danglesnipecelly
January 16 2014, 08:49PM
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Random stat, I know circumstances are different with new teammates but Jokinen, Iginla and J-Bo would be 2,3,4 in scoring on current Flames roster with Jokinen and Iggy both tied for team lead with 13 goals.

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#22 Carlizzle
January 16 2014, 08:53PM
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Beerzebub wrote:

This could get ugly.. We need truculence.

Too late. We already have the truculence and it is 4-0 on 16 shots which translates into a .750 save percentage for Mr. 5-13.

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#23 RKD
January 16 2014, 08:55PM
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Great, of all the players why does it have to be Jokinen who gets a goal and an assist on us? Talk about rubbing salt into a wound.

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#24 Carlizzle
January 16 2014, 08:55PM
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SB wrote:

Have the flames won a game wearing their new jersey ??

No.

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#25 Jeff In Lethbridge
January 16 2014, 08:56PM
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all i came here to say is, Flames are sucking.

that is all

out!!!

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#26 Walter White
January 16 2014, 08:56PM
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SB wrote:

Have the flames won a game wearing their new jersey ??

We should call it the "Ekblad jersey"........

WW

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#27 bubba
January 16 2014, 09:03PM
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the haircut , it's the key

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#28 the forgotten man
January 16 2014, 09:06PM
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When is "The Reto Berra Experiment" over?

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#29 negrilcowboy
January 16 2014, 09:08PM
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i think the time has come to give up on this bad lab experiment. reto berra is f#%&kin terrible.

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#30 RKD
January 16 2014, 09:11PM
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At least we won't get shutout thanks to Capt. Gio. Pat on the Fan says he expects us to see Ortio come up as well as guys like Granlund and Knight. Hope that is true.

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#31 The Last Big Bear
January 16 2014, 09:13PM
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I... feel shame.

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#32 Carlizzle
January 16 2014, 09:16PM
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negrilcowboy wrote:

i think the time has come to give up on this bad lab experiment. reto berra is f#%&kin terrible.

Terrible Un"Berra"ble. I hope that the call to Mr. Ward has been made to bring Ortio and Co. soon.

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#33 gussey
January 16 2014, 09:18PM
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Bring on the trades..

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#34 RexLibris
January 16 2014, 09:20PM
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Guys, relax.

I mean, it's not like you are Oilers fans.

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#35 Burnward
January 16 2014, 09:21PM
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I still think Berra isn't a lost cause...but it looks like he gave up on this game. That's tough to take.

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#36 Carlizzle
January 16 2014, 09:27PM
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gussey wrote:

Bring on the trades..

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAmen!

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#37 mattyc
January 16 2014, 09:31PM
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Here's a list of Flames D that look NHL calibre tonight:

Mark Giordano, TJ Brodie.

On the bright side: TJ Galiardi has looked OK tonight... so there's that...

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#38 T&A4Flames
January 16 2014, 09:32PM
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Walter White wrote:

We should call it the "Ekblad jersey"........

WW

Haha, finally something I can laugh and agree with you on.

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#39 RexLibris
January 16 2014, 09:33PM
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@mattyc

You have TWO NHL defensemen! So jealous right now.

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#40 Burnward
January 16 2014, 09:34PM
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blah

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#41 RKD
January 16 2014, 09:34PM
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That's three straight games the Flames have scored two goals. Small victories. At least we ain't the Oilers, with all those talented kids they still can't pass us in the standings. None of those talented forwards can't even play defence, that's pretty pathetic. How hard is it to backcheck, really?

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