July 21 2015 11:00AM
In looking at the Chicago Blackhawks, New York Islanders, Los Angeles Kings and St. Louis Blues - four clubs who were able to rapidly improve their underlying numbers in the space of two seasons - we were able to determine some common factors that led to their big gain.
Coaching changes, elite draft picks, home run trades, internal development and decent UFA signings were common factors to one degree or another across each of these teams. In this final article, we'll look at how the Flames compare to these clubs in an effort to determine if Calgary can be the next "Big Gainer" over the next couple of seasons.
July 21 2015 01:30AM
Core, noun. "The central or most important part of something."
To go further: "The part of something that is central to its existence or character. An important or unchanging group of people forming the central part of a larger body." Thanks, Google!
It's that last sentence there that's most relevant to sports. In hockey, core players are particularly apparent: they're the guys teams lock up and never let go of. Superstars changing teams is a rarity in the modern day NHL, often dealt huge contracts to keep them in the same team. And it's usually the team they started with.
As a rebuilding team, the Flames' core is only just now starting to form. Identifying who they are is important: these are the guys you're going to be spending most of your money on, and the guys who will hopefully be leading you to the Cup.
July 20 2015 01:18PM
The Calgary Flames have a lot of forwards. This isn't a bad thing by any stretch, as options and competition are usually things you want to have. But with competition comes tough decisions, and the Flames are most certainly going to face a number of those between now and the end of training camp. Let's try and break down how those decisions might go. Let's also marvel at my creativity and ingenuity when it comes to the picture I've decided to use for this article.
July 20 2015 11:00AM
There's been an awful lot of chatter lately about the Calgary Flames and their arena project. Ironically, the chatter has been about the lack of chatter about the arena project coming from the Flames organization.
But when you think about the bigger picture, about the Canadian economic and the political landscape, the radio silence may make a bit of sense.
I think the Flames are waiting to see how the political landscape sits after October's federal election.
July 20 2015 07:59AM
With the Calgary Flames' first arbitration hearing of the summer involving Lance Bouma just two days away, both sides have filed their cases with the League office. As expected, there is a pretty decently-sized gap between the two sides.
In #Flames arbitration case against Lance Bouma, club offers $1.5M, player requests $2.5M.— Tim Wharnsby (@TimWharnsby) July 20, 2015