FGD: Joni Love Hartley

bookofloob
February 27 2014 02:53PM

joniloveshartley

Just go ahead and let that image sink into your slowly mushed out brainholes.

Do you guys remember the Calgary Flames?!?!?! I know, I know, I tried too, but it's February 27th and the Olympics are over and we have to get through this together.

The good news is, your Flames are back in action tonight against the Los Angeles Kings (of Los Angeles), and that means taking a 2-0 advantage in this season's series up against a team that was as cold as the temperature in Calgary before the Olympic break and a team that is sure to be as cold as the temperature in Calgary on Sunday when we were all obviously outside waiting to get into the bars at 4:30 in the morning like the good hockey lovin' Canadian drunks we all are.

So strap in, Citizens. The road to the June Entry Draft resumes today, and all the Kings horses and all the Kings men....suck.

The Flamiest Flames Who Ever Flamed

Torch

As always, Flames lineups provided by our good friends at Daily Faceoff, Canada's #1 trusted provider of Faces Off. (Unfortunately, in this case, they've gotten it wrong. More on that in a second)

  • Galiardi - Backlund - Hudler
  • Cammalleri - Monahan - Colborne
  • Bouma - Stajan - Jones
  • Byron - Granlund - Westgarth
  • Giordano - Brodie
  • Russell - Butler
  • Smid - Wideman
  • Berra

Hey, remember when we didn't have to worry about Kevin Westgarth slowing down a couple of fast, young forwards with promise?

This is what a roster looks like when your team is bad/injured. Lee Stempniak, who has not been traded yet despite what some people hilariously thought they had broken on Sunday on the twitter machine when his name no longer appeared on the roster, is not active due to personal reasons (SPECULATE TO YOUR HEART'S DESIRE), while Curtis Glencross continues to work out the kinks in his ankle and Brian McGrattan remains injured with acute shitty hockey player.

Poor Kris Russell is saddled with Chris Butler on the second pairing and by the end of this game may be considering reneging on his sexy new contract if this keeps up.

The part of this where Daily Faceoff got it wrong was in goal. It's been widely reported (and actually confirmed by the Flames) that Joni Ortio is getting the start in goal tonight, making his long awaited and hotly anticipated NHL debut (so is Markus Granlund, but there's no retro TV show that I parodied his name into, so whatever*). Ortio has been lights out and Abbotsford this year, and Reto Berra is still ailing from an injury in Sochi that makes it impossible for him to glove a puck, so Ortio gets the nod, and that should be pretty great.

*I still love you Markus Granlund and am excited to see you play

Los Reyes de Los Ángeles

Daily Faceoff, y'all.

  • Toffoli - Kopitar - Williams
  • Pearson - Richards - Carter
  • King - Stoll - Brown
  • Nolan - Vey - Lewis
  • Muzzin - Doughty
  • Regehr - Voynov
  • Mitchell - Greene
  • Quick

Hey, there's a lot of pretty bad hockey players on the Kings! Things are starting to make sense now.

Los Angeles, of course, has six players returning from Sochi, two of which did the only thing that matters, neither of them being Dustin Brown. I don't have a lot to say about the Kings, but I CAN tell you Robyn Regehr scored a goal last night, so it's either that bad or that good in LA right now. Probably a sign of the apocalypse.

Playoff Implications

The NHL Entry Draft will take place on June 27th-28th, 2014, in Philadelphia, PA.

Players To Watch

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Derr, Granlund and Ortio. We've seen all these other old and busted players. I guess specifically Ortio, because I imagine Westgarth is going to coat his line in his usual brand of suck and Granlund's line will see scant minutes and do nothing of note outside of taking a few offsides waiting for Kevin to get into the play with his big, dumb, lumbering body, so really, the focal point is on Ortio and how he reacts to some questionable defending against some pretty good gold medal winning shooters (also Dustin Brown).

And hey, give Mike Cammalleri a watch too. It might be one of the last few tines we see him in a Flames jersey until whatever team acquires him in the offseason trades him back to Calgary midgame next January. Either way, Cammy, it's been a treat, and we love you, and may your toothless grin forever resonate around the great game of hockey.

Dotting The I's

This is obviously the Flames first game back after the break, but also the first in a string of 10 games over 17 nights, which is a lot of hockey and fast. The Flames season is essentially over despite whoever tells you the team is still gunning for the playoffs (which people in large print publications not mentioned here ARE saying), so it's just jockeying for position now in reference to lottery picks and all that junk that I don't care about.

My prediction for the rest of the year is that the Flames legitimately spoil one good hockey team's quest for a playoff spot, and there's a very good chance it could be the LA Kings. Mostly because my other bolder but far more hilarious if it comes true prediction is that the Flames end up finishing higher than the Kings in the standings. A win tonight goes a long way to making me look like a genius, so, uh, Go Flames Go.

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The Book of Loob is the Nation's resident expert in flim-flammery and twaddle. An unabashed Flames fan, when BoL is not intellectually bankrupting Flames Nation, he can be seen rooting for Blair Jones, often to excess, at Book of Loob. Follow him on twitter here.
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#2 Dr. Philosophy
February 27 2014, 03:55PM
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I find your brand of whimsy unentertaining.

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#3 beloch
February 27 2014, 07:32PM
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Tuning in at the appointed hour for hockey and being treated to Basketball is like showing up at a ski hill when the lifts have all broken down.

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#4 KelownaFlames
February 27 2014, 03:19PM
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All mentions of Westgarth and McGrattan were 100% awesome.

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#5 Funkyjaman
February 27 2014, 08:33PM
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Burke looking like Mamma Fertelli from the Goonies. Rough.

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#6 RexLibris
February 27 2014, 08:36PM
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Funkyjaman wrote:

Burke looking like Mamma Fertelli from the Goonies. Rough.

He deserved an Oscar for that work. Totally under appreciated.

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#7 Baalzamon
February 27 2014, 08:51PM
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? wrote:

Brown exposed Berras only weakness; his inability to stop pucks

Um... Ortio?

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#8 RexLibris
February 27 2014, 08:06PM
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mattyc wrote:

I see Brown has scored to make it 1-0. Does anyone have any insight into that goal?

Yes. Sutter told the bench to shut things down for the remaining 50-odd minutes of the game immediately afterwards.

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#9 Baalzamon
February 27 2014, 06:14PM
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@beloch

Rebound control is the best part of Ortio's game. Of course, he's never faced NHL shooters before, so...

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#10 beloch
February 27 2014, 05:30PM
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Re: Ortio

Things to watch for: Rebound control. Berra has none, so it's going to be interesting to see if Ortio has some since this is something a Finnish goalie of his pedigree should have in spades! If he does, it will also be fascinating to see how Calgary's defenders react to the puck winding up in the corner after the first shot instead of dangling seductively in the slot for the opponents forwards like we're all used to seeing!

Rebound control is one thing that sv% doesn't fully capture. A goalie with poor rebound control might have the same sv% as a goalie with great rebound control, but by constantly giving up primo scoring chances after the first shot he effectively increases both the quality and quantity of shots he's facing. A goalie who controls rebounds well would actually produce the same GAA with a lower sv%!

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#11 ?
February 27 2014, 08:40PM
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I hate how in basketball the final minute of the quarter takes around 5 in real time. Like someone just lose already

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#12 MichaelD
February 27 2014, 08:59PM
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@Aussie Flame

Early? are we excepting them to go deep in the playoffs

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#13 beloch
February 27 2014, 10:15PM
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2 goals against and a 0.916 sv% against the Kings is a very respectable NHL debut for Ortio. Quick was a badmofu tonight though.

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#14 TheoForever
February 27 2014, 03:43PM
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@bookofloob

Stempniak is expecting twins.

Well, his wife is.......

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#15 beloch
February 27 2014, 05:16PM
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Re: Westgarth

His possession stats were actually okay over the last three seaons. His Corsi On was -3.16, -5.49, -2.73. His Corsi Rel for those seasons were -8.3, -13.9, and -4.0, so clearly he was being carried by his linemates. This year Westgarth's Corsi On has plumetted from -2.48 with the Canes to -17.97 with the Flames and his Corsi Rel is down to -21.8! That's hideous! However, look no further than Big Ern for the reason why. McGrattan's Corsi On is a truly craptastic -29.8 and his Corsi Rel is -23.9. Yes, big Ern is so bad at hockey he's even dragging Westgarth down! (I love McG's character, but it's pretty clear he's the worst possession player on the team by far right now.)

I didn't mind the Westgarth acquisition too much at the time because the price was low and Westgarth's stats indicated he was a clear step up from McGrattan. If one goon must be played each game, swapping Westgarth in for McG makes the team better on paper. Unfortunately, Hartley inexplicably decided to play them both!

Tonight, there is no McG. That means Westgarth, as a somewhat lighter anchor than McG, is all that's going to pull the fourth line down. Byron is actually pretty good at possession and is accustomed to tougher competition than the fourth line traditionally sees as well. Quite frankly, if Granlund can pull his own weight out there this line might get some minutes. Playing with Byron and Westgarth is a far better opportunity than playing with Westgarth and McGrattan!

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#16 mattyc
February 27 2014, 07:51PM
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@piscera.infada

Sounds like reason #8797 to buy NHL gamecentre and an IP proxy.

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#17 mattyc
February 27 2014, 08:17PM
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They sure do have a lot of time outs and video reviews in the NBA...

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#18 mattyc
February 27 2014, 08:44PM
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Did Burke say anything interesting? Apparently TSN will be showing hoops until tomorrow morning.

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#20 piscera.infada
February 27 2014, 07:47PM
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@beloch

TSN 2 man.

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#21 beloch
February 27 2014, 09:34PM
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Ortio looks firmer now, but the team is playing well in front of him. Granlund has been stealing pucks and getting shots on net. So far, he looks like he belongs in the league. He's had 5:24 so far, but I wouldn't be surprised if he doubles that in the third.

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#22 beloch
February 27 2014, 09:37PM
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@Aussie Flame

I hope you're talking about the epic bitter beer face on Sutter in that bench closeup. A gif of that would be hilarious.

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#23 Carlizzle
February 27 2014, 10:16PM
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Trailing going into the final period and LA outshoots Calgary 11-2, nice push back.

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#24 Hat
February 27 2014, 10:20PM
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@Carlizzle

They were probably tired from doubling LA's shots through the first two. 23 shots through two periods is quite the feat for our squad. It wasn't so much of a push back as they finally relented.

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#25 Baalzamon
February 27 2014, 10:24PM
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No finish for Finnisher, but a decent debut nonetheless. Not bad for Ortio either, .917 and he didn't play his best game.

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#26 Ryan Pike
February 27 2014, 03:18PM
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Kings are slightly favoured by the odds-makers tonight. Over/under on Bodog is 5 goals.

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#27 mattyc
February 27 2014, 07:57PM
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I see Brown has scored to make it 1-0. Does anyone have any insight into that goal?

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#28 Baalzamon
February 27 2014, 08:26PM
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mattyc wrote:

I see Brown has scored to make it 1-0. Does anyone have any insight into that goal?

Chris Butler passed behind the net to Kris Russell for no reason, and Russell spontaneously combusted in the corner, resulting in a giveaway.

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#29 ?
February 27 2014, 08:42PM
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Baalzamon wrote:

Chris Butler passed behind the net to Kris Russell for no reason, and Russell spontaneously combusted in the corner, resulting in a giveaway.

Brown exposed Berras only weakness; his inability to stop pucks

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#30 Aussie Flame
February 27 2014, 08:52PM
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It may be early, but I'm calling best fgd title and image of the year.

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#31 RKD
February 27 2014, 09:23PM
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Nice to see Granlund and Ortio making their NHL debuts. I still want to see Corban Knight make an appearance.

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#32 ?
February 27 2014, 09:46PM
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Baalzamon wrote:

Um... Ortio?

In that moment in time, they switched bodies in order to preserve Ortio's purity :)

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#33 RKD
February 27 2014, 10:19PM
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Sutter's face is partially paralyzed after getting smoked in the face with a puck. True story.

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