November 20 2014 10:34AM
1. At the quarter pole
This is beginning to defy explanation, really. That's all you can say about it.
We're almost all the way through November and the Flames sit SIXTH in the National Hockey League, with 26 points from 20 games. They're only three points back of the league-leading Canadiens, who have played the same number of games against a much tougher schedule.
I am incredulous. Plus-10 goal differential, only six regulation losses, nearly unbeatable both home and away. They've taken points from eight of their last 10 games. It defies explanation.
November 13 2014 10:02AM
1. Let's talk about it
Last week I inadvertently set off yet another fire storm by having the audacity to suggest the Flames' winning ways weren't well-founded in "The Process" that successful teams actually have when it comes to winning over 82 games or more. I seem to recall that a lot of people suggested the Flames are closer than I think to being a competitive team in the NHL.
I wonder two things about this:
November 06 2014 09:00AM
1. You don't want to hear it
So here we are with the Flames still, against all odds, winning their games, and starting to look like they could be this year's Avalanche: A team that dramatically overperforms its underlying numbers by getting every bounce for an entire season. Yeah, it's still relatively early, but we're almost 20 percent of the way through the season and the Flames are tied for second in the division, ahead of San Jose and Los Angeles (somehow).
October 30 2014 10:03AM
1. It continues
Last week I talked about how the Flames' winning ways should remain upsetting to fans, and people largely did not want to hear it. Lots of talk about how this team was never bad enough to finish in the bottom five, and so on.
Well, the Flames have three points from their last three games (a humbling of the Hurricanes, a loss to the Capitals in which they looked overwhelmed, and a shootout loss really deserved to get more against a suddenly bumbling Montreal side). The Flames remain in the playoff hunt as a consequence: tied for a wild card spot with 12 points from 11 games, but technically sixth in the West as it stands. Which, if you'd prefer the team win, has to be considered a good thing.
October 23 2014 09:00AM
1. A bad start
The Flames have started the year as a club that has gone better than .500, winning nine points from its first eight games, including the overtime loss on Tuesday night.
This cannot be seen as acceptable.