Backlund and Monahan are already two of the best Flames firsts (ever)

Ryan Pike
April 29 2016 08:00AM

On June 24, the Calgary Flames will head to the podium and draft in the first round for the 43rd time in their franchise's history. (Well, presuming they don't trade their pick again.)

Historically, the Flames have had a mixed record in the first round. A perusal of their first round picks reveals a group that includes players that never left Europe, players that faded away in minor-pro, one deceased person (albeit from a really tragic accident) and tons of missed opportunities. However, the Flames have also drafted a few really good players in the first round, including a Hall of Famer and several others that have gone on to really good careers.

The 2015-16 Flames featured three past first round selections: 2007's Mikael Backlund, 2013's Sean Monahan and 2014's Sam Bennett. When you take a statistical look at Flames picks, both in terms of their time with the Flames and their overall NHL careers, Backlund and Monahan are already among the franchise's best first rounders.

Here's how they stack up!

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What do the Flames have to show for their last 10 first rounders?

Ryan Pike
April 28 2016 10:00AM

Until maybe a few seasons ago, the Calgary Flames were known as a team that was bad at drafting. Like, really bad. Like, couldn't find a nut if they were a squirrel in a room full of nuts bad. Not only was their drafting not particularly great, their asset management with their first round picks – free assets that teams get from the league to help them stay competitive – was pretty awful as well.

So to take a look at Calgary's drafting and asset management, here's what the Flames have done with their last 10 original draft picks.

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Five further questions about the future of CalgaryNEXT

Ryan Pike
April 26 2016 07:00AM

On Wednesday, the City of Calgary made available their report on their evaluation of the Calgary Sports and Entertainment Corporation's CalgaryNEXT proposal. The proposed project would provide, among other things, a new home for the National Hockey League's Calgary Flames.

The City's assessment was, to be charitable, not particularly enthusiastic in regards to the project. In light of the City's response and the discussion yesterday by City Council, here are five questions we have following the report.

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20 years ago, Jarome Iginla made his NHL debut

Ryan Pike
April 21 2016 02:00PM

In something that will no doubt make many of us feel quite old, today's the anniversary of a pretty noteworthy event in Calgary Flames - and National Hockey League - history. Twenty years ago today, highly-touted Western Hockey League product Jarome Iginla was whisked from Kamloops (where the Blazers had just been eliminated from the post-season) to Calgary to make his NHL debut in Game 3 of the Flames' first round series with Chicago.

Iginla was +2 with three shots on goal (and an assist), but the Flames lost the game 7-5 en route to a series sweep by the Blackhawks.

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The City says CalgaryNEXT isn't feasible in present form or location

Ryan Pike
April 21 2016 08:00AM

Back in August, the Calgary Sports and Entertainment Corporation unveiled their concept for a new arena (for the Calgary Flames, Hitmen and Roughnecks) and combined stadium/fieldhouse (for the Stampeders). The idea was to replace the aging Scotiabank Saddledome and McMahon Stadium with newer facilities, and do to so in a centralized manner in the underutilized West Village area west of downtown.

In early November, City Council set some terms of reference for evaluating the CalgaryNEXT proposal and the city manager's office got to work on Phase 1 of their evaluation – effectively crunching the basic numbers and seeing how everything shook out. The report was made available today on the City's website.

In short? (Emphasis added.)

Administration has come to the conclusion that CalgaryNEXT is not feasible in its present form or location. It is recommended that CSEC be given an opportunity to respond to this report and that The City and CSEC work together to investigate potential locations on or near Stampede Park for an innovative new arena/event centre that benefits Calgarians. It is also recommended that Council reconfirm the Foothills Athletic Park as the preferred location for The City of Calgary fieldhouse project, and that work continue with respect to addressing the contamination issues in West Village.

So what doesn't the City like about the proposal? We dug into the report to find out.

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