Nation World HQ
July 15 2016 05:00AM
Leaf fans losing confidence in Lou, "Mandela incident" was beginning of the end for Jonathan Bernier, how do things look for Flames headed into camp, a look at Adam Larsson in Edmonton, the NHL isn't fun, finding elite talent late in the draft, how likely are goalies to "make it" and more in this week's Nation Roundup brought to you by Violent Gentlemen.
July 14 2016 02:00PM
We're deep down in the July hockey news dregs, ladies and gentlemen. So as we all wait patiently to find out when Sean Monahan and Johnny Gaudreau will sign with the Calgary Flames, and for what term and cap hit, let's take some time to ponder some other things that will undoubtedly factor into decision-making over the next while.
First up? The waiver wire.
July 14 2016 11:00AM
Brayden Burke was not drafted as an 18-year-old. His 18-year-old season (2014-15) saw him battle an early injury, get traded from Red Deer to Lethbridge, and put up 34 points in 42 games. It wasn't awful, but for a smaller guy in a good league his numbers alone weren't going to get him anywhere.
But his 19-year-old season was monstrous. As the Lethbridge Hurricanes' resurgence as a WHL power became the story in Canadian junior hockey, Burke was often the catalyst for their offense. He tripled his previous offensive totals, finishing third in the entire WHL with 109 points in his first full season in the league.
This accomplishment saw him overlooked in his second NHL Draft. What the hell?
July 14 2016 08:00AM
The Flames haven't been without a player wearing #6 since the 2004-05 lockout. As of today, they're still with a #6: Dennis Wideman, specifically.
Wideman, however, is someone whose status as a Flame could be in jeopardy. His cap hit is too high for his play to justify, not to mention the cap crunch his team currently finds itself in. He still has a useful set of skills - and if another team is eyeing them, then the Flames could be without a #6 for the first time in over a decade.
But yeah, that hasn't come to pass yet. Wideman is still here, and so is his #6.
July 13 2016 11:00AM
(Sergei Belski / USA Today Sports)
For those unfamiliar with his situation, let me tell you a story about Oliver Kylington.
During the 2013-14 season, the season prior to his draft eligible season, people that follow the draft began to hear chattering about his skills. He was considered a surefire top five pick in the 2015 Draft. But his stock began to slide throughout the 2014-15 campaign and the Flames bought low, trading up into the end of the second round to take him at 60th overall.
This might shock you, but there were likely members of the hockey world's collective braintrust that saw a teenager playing with swagger in men's pro hockey in Sweden and fixated on the flaws. After his first full season in North America – as an 18-year-old – he's a much more complete player.
And perhaps even more confident in his abilities than he was a year ago.