News and Notes - June 2 2014

Ryan Pike
June 02 2014 11:17AM

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It was a quiet weekend for the Calgary Flames but a fairly busy one in the hockey world, as we now know that the Los Angeles Kings and New York Rangers will face-off in the 73rd best-of-seven Cup Finals.

By wonderful coincidence, the Flames won the season series against both the Kings and Rangers. That and a toonie gets you a cup of coffee nowadays.

Let's catch up on a few things, shall we?

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Weekend Open Thread: Possession Anchors and Balloons

Ryan Pike
May 31 2014 08:30AM


As we all revel in the awesomeness that is the Chicago/LA series (and last night's game in particular), why not finish off the last of my brief possession look-backs?

Who makes their teammates consistently, considerably better at driving the play? Conversely, who was an absolute drain on the life-force of the team's offensive drives? That's what I tried to dig into here.

My approach was rather simple: anybody who played 100 even-strength minutes together was compared. Players that increased (or decreased) another's Corsi by 10% or more (compared to that player apart from them) were noted and listed here, listed from biggest to smallest differences made. Your mileage may vary.

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The 2014 Flames Fifteen - #12 Brett Kulak

Ryan Pike
May 30 2014 08:00AM

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Brett Kulak has quietly carved out quite the understated junior career. He might also be considered a late-bloomer. Calgary's fourth round selection in 2012 kind-of fell off the radar, being chosen after such high-profile picks as Mark Jankowski, Patrick Sieloff and Jon Gillies in that draft.

But he's played more professional games (14!) than any of 'em already, and he's seemed to improve his play and his profile since getting picked.

Kulak is #12 in this year's Flames Fifteen.

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Two to Consider: Kane LaFranchise and Brett Olson

Ryan Pike
May 28 2014 08:15AM

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In the aftermath of a 2013-14 AHL season that saw the Abbotsford Heat make the playoffs, lose in the first round and then move to Glens Falls, there were quite a few obvious bright spots. Max Reinhart continued his progression. Corban Knight translated his two-way NCAA prowess to the AHL (and even had a nice NHL audition). Markus Granlund and Joni Ortio brought Finnish flash to the NHL during their brief recalls. Heck, Michael Ferland was a wrecking ball before he got hurt.

But two AHLers were bright spots for the Heat to the point were I think that Craig Conroy or Brad Treliving, or whoever's in charge of minor pro players nowadays, should try to retain them for the Adirondack Heat. I'd probably throw NHL two-way deals at these guys.

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Happy Anniversary!

Ryan Pike
May 26 2014 08:00AM


On May 25, 1989, the Calgary Flames beat the Montreal Canadiens by a 4-2 score in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Finals. The win clinched the series for the Flames and, 25 years later, stands as the club's lone championship triumph in three trips to the dance.

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