August 29 2016 10:00AM
Glen Gulutzan has a handful of challenges ahead of him as the new Flames coach.
Perhaps no single obstacle is as big as the bottom end of the Flames blueline rotation. Brad Treliving has so far been unable to clear out any of the clutter from positions 4-6 on the club's back-end, leaving his new bench boss with an unsightly mix of aging players who all have the same problem: they can't defend.
To crystallize this problem further, we'll concentrate on Dennis Wideman. At $5.25M, Wideman is expensive. He still has some offensive chops, but his defensive game is rapidly swirling around the bowl. In the proper circumstances, Wideman could probably be an asset for at least one more year, but beyond that, you need two very obvious things: shelter at even strength and a partner who can do the defensive heavy lifting.
The first is possible. The second is the problem.
August 26 2016 10:00AM
The Flames are entering 2016-17 with different coaching, maturing youngsters and much better goaltending. It's not unrealistic to expect the team to take a very real step forward.
But Calgary improving over last year's roster isn't enough. They also have to improve relative to the rest of the Western Conference in order to have a real shot at the playoffs. Last season, the Flames finished with 77 points, good for 12th in the West and 10 points back of the final Wild Card spot (Minnesota). That means they will probably have to leapfrog at least four teams and improve by 10 points to have a real shot.
With that in mind, here's how things are shaping up in the West heading into the new season.
August 25 2016 08:00AM
The Calgary Flames picked Tyler Parsons 54th overall in the 2016 entry draft.
At the time it seemed an odd choice. The club had picked Mason McDonald 34th overall just 12 months earlier and already had bluechip goaltending prospect Jon Gillies in the system. The organization seemed set when it came to hopefuls in the crease.
But things start to make more sense when you take a closer look at Parson's results. The best goalie in the OHL, Parsons helped backstop of the juggernaut London Knights to a Memorial Cup despite being relatively young.
August 17 2016 12:37PM
According to SportsNet today, Johnny Gaudreau confirmed he will participate in the upcoming World Cup competition, whether or not he has a contract in place with the Flames. They report Gaudreau purchased additional insurance to cover himself during the tournament.
August 15 2016 12:55PM
It's not exactly the free agent signing(s) Flames fans are waiting for, but the team announced today they have re-inked 23-year-old defender Tyler Wotherspoon. According to the team site, the contract is a one-year, two-way deal, which is to be expected for a guy entering the "prove it" phase of his young career.