April 15 2013 11:01PM
Now that your Calgary Flames have soundly beaten the Oilers, the goal for the rest of the season should be pretty damn clear. Play your asses off, put in a solid effort and then lose a close nailbiter. There is no shame or pride left in the final solution.
The only problem with that plan, is that no one told your Calgary Flames that; or they're just not listening.
With a line-up that feature names like Reinhart, Baertschi and now Ben Hanowski rather than the likes of Iginla, Bouwmeester and Blake Comeau (yes THAT Blake Comeau), This team went into tonight primed and ready to win it's third consecutive game; for the first time this season.
April 15 2013 01:50PM
On trade deadline day, April 3, the Calgary Flames basically threw in the towel. And yes, by that I mean the trade that sent Blake Comeau to the Blue Jackets was meant to be a watershed moment for the franchise. Combined with the deals that shipped out higher-paid, higher-skilled players named Jarome Iginla and Jay Bouwmeester, those moves were the beginning of the Flames' long-delayed rebuild and a sign to fans to prepare for some losses.
April 15 2013 11:23AM
(Steve MacFarlane is a veteran sports writer here in Calgary. Once upon a time he was a fixture at the Sun, but has since moved on to bigger and better things. We're trying to add Steve to the permanent roster here at FN. For now, we debut his first exclusive piece for us today. Enjoy!)
By Steve MacFarlane
The Youth Movement. It’s about time.
While covering the Flames on the newspaper beat for seven seasons — from lockout to lockout — the team’s biggest problem became more and more evident each year. Too many veterans playing the latter half of their careers. Not nearly enough kids hungry to prove deserving of a spot in the NHL. That much was obvious to everyone.
But it was a subtle side-effect of that lopsided mix of age and experience over youth and exuberance that I’ve always believed really caused the gradual disintegration of the team’s success on the ice: The players’ off-ice chemistry.
April 15 2013 08:27AM
It isn't terribly noble to wag your finger and say "I told you so", but I think this is an article that needs to be written. I spent all of last season doing my damnedest to defend Mikael Backlund from a growing chorus of naysayers in the Flames media and fanbase. The team was going through another disappointing season and Backlund wasn't really contributing, at least in the most obvious ways. The 23 year old was hurt all the time and whenever he was in the line-up, the puck wasn't going in the net for him. People in this city are highly conditioned to expect draft picks to bust, so it seemed like another failure in a long line of wasted prospects.
April 14 2013 02:50AM
Today started off much the same as any day when it's the Battle of Alberta. A conversation with a few of my friends that just happen to be Oilers fans (What can I say, I'm a charitable guy). The conversation involved much of the same banter that inevitably comes when the Calgary Flames and the Edmonton Oilers square off.
What really stuck in mind this time was when it was made pefectly clear to me that, "After that 8-2 beatdown, Hell would freeze over before the Flames were going to win this game tonight." I didn't really know if I should get too in depth on this one, after all, Calgary was dressing six, yes SIX, AHL minor leaguers tonight, and the Oil was bringing the full measure of the "draft pack".
Well later that day the snow began to fall here in Cowtown; and it kept falling. Could it be? Could Hell actually be freezing over? Let's see how it played out...