The Flames Blueline

Kent Wilson
July 11 2010 11:52AM

TORONTO, ON - NOVEMBER 14:  Alexei Ponikarovsky #23 and Matt Stajan #14 of the Toronto Maple Leafs wait to tip a shot between Cory Sarich #6 and Jay Bouwmeester #4 of the Calgary Flames in a game on November 14,2009 at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario. The Flames won 5-2. (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images)

The Flames organizational strength in terms of pure depth is the back-end. That's a source of some comfort this summer, but italso raises a number of questions moving forward into the new season. Once Ian White is re-signed, the club will have 8 NHL defenders on one-way contracts (Bouwmeester, Regehr, Sarich, Staios, Giordano, Pardy, White, Kronwall) as well as at least one hopeful who could probably make the team out of camp (Pelech).

Should White score a $3.5M deal, Calgary will have about $22M committed on the blueline.

Here's how things stand if nothing major changes between now and training camp -

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Kotalik to Sign in Russia?

Kent Wilson
July 09 2010 09:00AM

OTTAWA, ON - FEBRUARY 09: Ales Kotalik #26 of the Calgary Flames skates during the NHL game against the Ottawa Senators at Scotiabank Place on February 9, 2010 in Ottawa, Canada. (Photo by Phillip MacCallum/Getty Images)


According to Russian journalist and twitterer Alessandro Seren Rosso, Lokomotiv is considering signing boat anchor Ales Kotalik.

Should that happen, it would take immense pressure off of Darryl Sutter to find a place to stash Kotalik's burdensome contract for the next two years. It would alo render sending Steve Staios to the minors a bit more probable this October. More good news. 

It wouldn't surprise me if Sutter has gently prodded Kotalik to look for options elsewhere this summer (it's the KHL or the AHL, Ales). If that happens, Darryl will take his place next to lucky Lou in New Jersey as a guy with the uncanny ability to shed his cap errors. Of course, I'd prefer he not make them in the first place, but at least it seems he can slide out of them when they happen. 

In terms of real money, I'm not sure if this would be a "loan" where the Flames would still owe Ales his salary, or an outright "suspension" where his departure means total financial relief. First, we'll have to see if the signing actually happens and then assess the details afterwards.

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Flames Hire Jay Feaster as Assistant GM

Kent Wilson
July 08 2010 04:05PM



According to twitter reports, it looks like Sutter has found someone willing to make balloon animals. Ironically, it's Jay Feaster, the GM of the Tampa Bay Lightning team that defeated the Flames in the 2004 Stanley Cup finals.

That sounds like a good resume, of course, but frankly I'm unimpressed by Feaster. His team slid into terrible territory soon after winning the cup and his writings at the Hockey News since being deposed have caused me to both laugh derisively and raise my eyebrows more than once.

So, yeah...color me less than thrilled.

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July 8th News and Notes

Robert Cleave
July 08 2010 10:56AM


Alexander Frolov




The NHL's first week of free agency has passed with nary an ESPN special in sight, but that doesn't mean that it's been without interest. This week in the round-up, we'll review the fall-out from the Flames' attempt to recreate, well, something or other, as well as news from other clubs, and I'll have a look at the Globe and Mail's series on the potential for new Canadian franchises.


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Flames Assistant GM Job Posting
July 07 2010 04:31PM





For the Calgary Flames, the 09-10 season was akin to a ride on a rollercoaster. A season that started full of promise and hope ended as one mired in despair and regret. As one could reasonably expect after such a tumultuous ride, the fans of the team, lost and disheartened, sought guidance.

Direction came in the form of a now infamous post season press conference. Ken King, President of the Flames, revealed that the organization was in the process of hiring one or two people to assist Darryl Sutter, the GM of the team, with his duties. An ‘Assistant GM’ was on the way.

A draft and a free agency period later, nobody has been hired. This has led many in the fan base to question the motives of the announcement. Were the Flames lying to them, to get the heat off Darryl?

Relax Flames fans. The fact that a ‘New Assistant GM’ hasn’t been hired isn’t a reflection of the Flames administrations general disdain for the paying customer. It is actually a result of a simple clerical error. Instead of sending out the ‘want ads’ out to qualified candidates such as Kelly Kisio, a mail room mix-up scattered them to the four corners of the Earth. After much bribery and coercion, Domebeers managed to get a hold of the ‘want ad’.

We now present it to FlamesNation. 

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