August 09 2013 09:17AM
One of the more interesting debates that has arisen of late, particularly with the improvement in Calgary's drafting, is how to rate prospects. For example, when I say that Johnny Gaudreau is the best Flames prospect, what does that mean and how do I come to that conclusion?
In the interest of throwing fuel on that particular debate, over the next while we'll be touching on a few different methods of assessing young talent. To kick things off, let's look at NHL Points Equivalence, or NHLE, one of the most relied-upon statistical measures used to evaluate prospects, particularly across different leagues.
August 07 2013 09:06AM
Providence College freshman John Gilmour ended his first year of college in a rather unique way – by being drafted by an NHL team. The native of Montreal – who in no way is related to Doug Gilmour – is a teammate of 2012 Flames draft picks Mark Jankowski and Jon Gillies, which most likely got him on the club's radar.
The finance major put up 13 points in 38 games as a freshman, but was generally regarded as a solid two-way blueliner rather than a stellar offensive threat. But if the Friars are expected to take a leap forward in the NCAA pecking order this season, Gilmour will be relied upon to maintain his defensive stance while pitching in a bit more offensively.
The 198th pick in the 2013 NHL Draft was in attendance at Flames development camp earlier this month, where I had the chance to speak with him a bit.
August 06 2013 11:15AM
No strangers to drafting defenders from the WHL, the Calgary Flames snapped up Eric Roy of the Brandon Wheat Kings in the fifth round of the NHL Draft. A native of Saskatchewan, Roy is generally better known for his offensive skills than his defensive acumen – he had 17 goals (second-best on the Wheaties), but a minus-32 rating (second-worst).
Heading into the 2013-14 season, Roy will be one of a handful of Wheat Kings drafted by NHL clubs and, along with team captain and Islanders first round pick Ryan Pulock, will anchor a very young defensive core. While he's still quite raw, he's got a lot of potential and already has his offensive game rounded out. If he can shore up his defensive zone play, he could be quite a steal as a fifth round selection. Compared to his first-rounder teammate, Roy's much more of a work in progress in a good way.
I caught up with Roy in early July at Flames development camp.
August 02 2013 10:07AM
With all this chatter about the recent signings from the Calgary Flames, there have been a few questions in the comments about the AHL affiliate of the Flames, the Abbotsford Heat. In the interest of fostering discussion of some of these future Flames, here's a quick glance at the Heat's prospective players.
As per usual, things may change in the intervening weeks so a more in-depth examination will follow as we approach the start of training camp.
August 01 2013 12:10PM
The last 18 months have been full of ups and downs for Vancouver Giants defenseman Brett Kulak. His team made the playoffs in 2011-12, firmly in the middle of the WHL's Western Conference pack but were upset by Spokane in the first round. Kulak was then drafted by the Calgary Flames in the fourth round of the 2012 NHL Draft and he was able to compare himself against the team's other defensive prospects at development camp. The NHL lockout eliminated the chance to play in any pre-season games, but instead he returned to the Giants.