August 11 2015 01:30PM
I have been an advocate of dealing Dennis Wideman and replacing him with Cody Franson for most of the off-season. With Franson lingering into August as an unrestricted free agent, my interest in the Flames swapping him in for Wideman has doubled, given the fact his initial contract demands have likely lessened over time. There's a chance Franson goes relatively cheap to whoever signs him now, which is good news given the fact he was arguable the best UFA defender on the market this year.
I've learned that my Wideman strategy doesn't hold universal appeal. A wade through comments sections or message boards shows a wave of support for the current Flames, as well as lot of skepticism about the value of Wideman. In this article, I'll look at a side-by-side comparison of the two and discussion my reasoning for the hypothetical switch up.
August 11 2015 11:01AM
Two players epitomized last year’s force-fed mantra of “always earned, never given.” Those two players were Josh Jooris and Garnet Hathaway.
Who saw that coming?
Jooris, on the one hand, had professional experience and a rather underwhelming rookie season in Abbotsford, but made the Flames out of sheer will. On the other hand, Hathaway came into camp on an AHL contract and by the end of the season had earned himself a shiny new two-year entry-level deal because of his stellar work ethic.
It may sound cliché, but will and determination are the only reason these two are where they are today.
August 10 2015 03:30PM
It may be August, but World Junior chatter is just beginning, as development camps have concluded both here in Calgary and in Lake Placid. Calgary saw Hockey Canada host a mini-tournament involving Canada, Russia and the Czech Republic, while Lake Placid hosted the United States, Sweden and Finland.
So based upon how things have gone thus far, let's take a brief gander at which Calgary Flames prospects could be headed to Finland at Christmas for the World Junior tournament.
August 10 2015 01:30PM
Well, Citizens, we’re into August, which is a wonderful time to be alive as a human. But if you're a hockey fan, every day is grueling fresh hell until AT LEAST mid-September, as those last wretched few days before training camp begins slowly wilt away, a fading memory aptly correspondent to a season that encourages fading memories.
As far as the blog game goes, it is THE PITS. Content is at a premium (you may have noticed all the pieces inviting you to re-live prior seasons in which your Calgary Flames toiled in over the past decade. Don’t worry, I didn’t read those either). But fear not, fellow work procrastinators, the mighty Flames Nation has you covered, as today we begin our fabled Top 20 Prospect Profile, where we go deep on the best young talent this organization has to offer.
Your boy Flooby is up first. I’ll be profiling young Rushan Rafikov in the number 20 spot. If there's anything you’ve ever wanted to know about the Russian defender, well boy howdy, uh, you’re still going to have to wait, because the goods on Rafikov are so tightly under wrap that I felt like I was going back under the Iron Curtain to obtain it.
August 10 2015 11:00AM
To build on a previous post: the Flames came from humble beginnings in regards to centres, which is to say, they had none. At all. For years, cries of "Please get Iggy a number one centre!" went unfulfilled, and instead, the Flames tried different strategies.
Remember Alex Tanguay the centre? What the hell was that?
It goes without saying that these different strategies never worked. Craig Conroy was one of the best Jarome Iginla ever played with (and all love and respect to Connie, but...), and it was only once Iginla was traded away the Flames were able to draft a future potential number one in Sean Monahan.
And then Sam Bennett a year later.
Too late for Iggy, but one thing's for sure: Calgary is no longer asking wingers to play down the middle.