Flames Hire Hartsburg and Jamie Pringle



As expected, the Flames announced the hiring of Craig Hartsburg today. I suspect Brent Sutter was the catalyst for this choice given their past associations. Hartsburg has had some rough times as a head coach in the league, but his resume is pretty solid otherwise. It’ll be interesting to see what role he takes with the club.

Also hired today was Jamie Pringle as a "video analyst". He apparently spent three years doing similar work for the Florida Panthers prior to joining the Flames. Calgary sure likes ex-Panthers don’t they?

Also of note are floating rumors the Flames are heavily pursuing an AGM. One name who Bob McKenzie suggested was Ryan Jankowski, previously of the New York Islanders. It also wouldn’t surprise me if the suddenly unemployed Rick Dudley’s name popped up on the call list as well.

  • Emir

    I’m not sure how I feel about the signings. Brent obviously trusts the guy but his short comings has a head coach do make me nervous. I do trust Brent so I’m sure it will be fine.

    the idea of Dudley as agm does make me worry. He has had a good tenure with the thrashers and nothing to show for it. Unable to hold onto top talent in Atlanta is my biggest concern. So I’m not sold on having a guy like that in our org, unless he can convince otherwise (sort of like feaster did.) I would rather see somebody else because feaster is on a short leash by us due to his past, so he really needs to bring in the right guy or else we will pay for it dearly watching the 90’s repeat themselves again.

  • Michael

    I think the Flames suffered from a relatively
    inexperienced group of Asst Coaches, so the addition of Hartsburg may be a good move.

    He has history with Sutter, and his experience and x’s & o’s style might help add some structure to the power play and the defensive side of the game. Hartsburg was not a good head coach, but from what I’ve heard is better suited as an Asst.

    I wish the Flames were hiring people (and players) from winning organizations. We constantly seem to attract the opposite …

    • icedawg_42

      “I wish the Flames were hiring people (and players) from winning organizations. We constantly seem to attract the opposite” … .

      YES – I’m a believer in ‘winning pedigree’, and it seems like since the big Toronto trade/Flames Apocalypse, most of the imports are of losing pedigree. AARGH.

  • Sanintarious

    Sort of off topic…there has been rumors on some sites that Tanguay has been offered a contract of 2 years 4 million. Seems like a bit of a slap in the face to me….But its getting pretty worrysome that they haven’t signed him yet. I’d be very disapointed if they let a guy go who got 65+ points….Cammy all over again…sigh

    • icedawg_42

      I have heard Feaster twice make the comment that because of the CAP rules and something I think he calls”tag” rules it might not be possible to have Tanguay signed before July 1st, but that everything could be worked out and the contract ready to go for signing July 1.
      My understanding is that teams are limited as to how much they can go over the salary cap before July 1 even though their season is over.
      I think that is what the Flames are dealing with, but I don’t totally understand the details–maybe someone out there has a better understanding than me.

      • icedawg_42

        At the trade deadline, I thought re-signing Tanguay would be a slam dunk and that Glencross would be gone to free agency….now I think I may have had that backwards. Still hoping Feaster can get it done. Folks – if Tangs does sign here, just brace yourselves for yet another NMC.

  • icedawg_42

    Video guy also responsible to provide bird’s eye view coaching during the game too if i’m not mistaken. I think something will get done with Tanguay – or at least I hope so. I still expect Hagman and Kotalik to be shipped to Abby or Europe. As far as Dudley – I think he’d be “ok”…he built a decent young core with not a lot of money, more of a hockey guy than Feaster too by my reckoning. All in all, plenty of change, and looking like at least off the ice they’re putting some distance between themselves and the Darryl era, so i’ll take the wait and see approach. Change is good…or, at least in this case, required.

  • Bob Cobb

    10, I just wanted to help you get to double digits in case you get paid by way of amount of volume and traffic or comments made to the site and as such this story will have no impact on my life whatever but thanks for trying.

    • Vintage Flame

      Wow! That you actually consciously sat down and took the time to write out that post, is astonishing.

      Seriously dude, you have some pretty major issues. There is hating a team and mocking them… and then there is you. Seek therapy to resolve what ever issues you have with this world before you start receiving strange requests from your dog, to do stuff.

      Find a friend Bob.. or better yet.. get a girlfriend, you’ll be a much happier person to be around.

  • I would guess that Hartsburg will be in charge of the defensemen, unless he is the new goalie coach.

    If the Flames have the chance to hire Dudley as the AGM and dont they are idiots. One of the brightest and most underrated hockey guys out there. Cup in Tampa and the cup in Chicago were due to a lot of the work that he did.

    I would offer Tanguay up to $3M for as long as Iginla’s contract is for. Tell him that he is with the team as long as Iginla is. I would even give him a modified NTC whereby his NTC is in effect with Iginla on the team, but if Iginla is ever traded that his NTC would be lifted. Who knows, come this January when the team is in 15th spot Iginla might decide he wants to play for a team that has a chance. Much bigger package back if you send Jarome and Alex together.

    • T&A4Flames

      I completely agree with everything you wrote. At the start of the season when everyone was on the “trade Iggy” train I admit I pondered the return on a Iggy/Tangs trade. I like Tanguay, but he needs Iginla as much as Iginla needs him to maximize the potential at this point in their careers. Hitching them together via Tangs contract makes sense. As for Dudley, that’s exactly what I was thinking when I 1st heard ‘Peg wasn’t taking him.

  • I haven’t vetted Dudley so I’m not sure what I think about his abilities.

    I think part of the issue for him is he wants to be a head cheese and not an assistant. That said, being employed is better than…not. So we’ll see.

    • SuntanOil

      Dudley may not be employed, but that 4 year extension is now being bought out over the course of 8 years, so I don’t think Dudley is in a hurry to become employed in a market so far from his home in Atlanta.

  • Michael, totally agree. Just looked at Hartsburg NHL pedigree:
    He was an assistant for 3 years in Philly on some pretty crappy Flyers teams from 90-94. (forgot 1 year with a sub 500 North Stars Team).

    Then he coached the Hawks, great first season, lost in the 2nd round and went down from there. 2.5 average seasons in Anaheim, making the playoffs, once, losing in first round. Then assistant for couple years back in Philly for a good Flyers team. Then of course, didnt finish a season with the Sens. As for the Jr ranks, decent. 2007-08 was good season in the Soo, with team of mostly 19 year olds, made it to OHL finals. Other than that, he’s only made it out of the 1st round one other time. So not a great pedigree, unlike what some want to say.

    Sutter has said he wanted a winning NHL coach, not him, and looking in the mirror, not Brent. Two years in NJ, lost in first round each year on some really good teams. 2 years in Calgary, out of playoffs. In 7 years with Red Deer, he only made it out of the 1st round 3 times, (all in his first 3 of 4 seasons). In his final 3, missed once, didnt get out of the first in the other 2.

    The Flames need experienced WINNING coaches, managers and players. Out of the current roster (minus the players who went on the 04 run), only 3 players have ever gone deep in the playoffs and 2 of them only went once. A couple of the “star/veteran” players have little or no NHL playoff experience (one has no playoff experience at any level, except for one playoff run as a Wolf).

    The organization really needs to think to itself, are we going in the right direction? My thoughts are sadly no.

  • Emir

    Three of the sites consulted were these, but a few other were looked at as well and I don’t have their URLs.




    reason I dug deeper was because after reading the posts that followed mine I realized I was wrong about my information used in the previous post. I thought he had been in Atlanta as GM for a long period of time but he was not at all.

    So after considering those three articles what I can see is that Dudley is a guy who comes into a new situation, trades everything in site, and then is gone a couple of season later. So if the flames are looking for a shock & awe GM who will be trading to try to improve his team, then he is what we want in the fold. As for drafting Dudley has brought in a couple of good players, Horton & Booth, but has also drafted a lot of busts out of Europe. If anything he kind of reminds of what Darryl brought to this organization. So if the org. is looking to go in a new direction then it makes no sense to bring this guy in. Unless we want to pursue a Darryl Sutter style GM approach and hope that another 5 years of this works. But Dudley typically stays at a post for 2 years so he won’t be around long…

    Long story short, if this team is looking to bring young guys up and develop from within, he is not our guy, And that’s what i think the flames are moving towards so I don’t see the fit again.

    Also, Dudley did not do anything of substance to help create the Sens of the late 90’s, however it can be said that he did do something to create the lightning team that won the cup under Feaster’s tenure there. Feaster was the GM following Dudley and inherited his team.

    So for those reasons, I hope we consider a better suited candidate who is skilled at spotting talent & has capabilities to help in the draft and provide valuable hockey intel to a trade (which Dudley does.) I think that who we hire needs to provide both parts (drafting & trading) and not just one side (drafting or trading.) Failure to do this will result in a repeat Darryl Era (trade only GM) or a team that can draft well and just trade the players away (ie. the 90’s flames Org.)

  • Emir

    for clarification on that last paragraph if it seems confusing to you, I am saying that Dudley is a good GM for trades but does not know how to develop from within.

  • Wasn’t Feaster Dudley’s assistant in Tampa? I thought I read somewhere that when Dudley was fired and Feaster took over that their relationship was not that great. If that is the case then I don’t think that Dudley would come to Calgary as the AGM to Feaster.

  • RKD

    I hope this hiring proves fruitful for the Flames. I wonder if they considered bringing back Jim Playfair as an assistant coach?

    If Dudley is hired as AGM, I wonder if he and Feaster would team up to move contracts to sign Brad Richards because of the Tampa connection.

  • Vintage Flame

    I’d like to say I’m happy about the Hartsburg hiring, but I can’t say I’m happy or disappointed. I know there are a lot of comments about the Flames needing to bring in the winning pedigree and that Hartsburg doesn’t really carry that tag with him, but I kind of like the move anyways. The guy definitely knows his stuff and it’s all going to be a wait and see attitude anyways.

    We have to wait and see what feaster does at the draft, does he draft #13, does he trade 1 or both of the 2nd picks, what contract is he going to unload or try to unload, what happens July 1st, do we sign Tanguay??

    Honestly, until training camp comes along and we see how Sutter and Hartsburg coach what ever team is iced by Feaster and the AGM to be named later, no one can really say for certain what Hartsburg’s effect or contribution to this team will be.

    as for Dudley.. same sort of deal. I like the comments made that possibly Dudley would be a cog in attaining Richards, but until Jay offloads some dead weight, it’s not even a possibility, if it ever was in the first place.

    I like the idea of the Flames getting a hold of DeBoer, I just hope it doesn’t lead to the problem of too many chiefs and not enough Indians.*

    [*No racial slur intended, just seemed the only fitting cliche at the time of this post. My Apologies if I offended anyone with it’s use… Unless I offended icedawg, then I don’t care ;)]

    • icedawg_42

      WOW – you actually took the time to honor us with this schlock?? – there…offense right back at ya 😉

      I dont see a scenario with Richards coming here. Im ok with Hartsburg – like I said before I’ll withhold judgement until I see how it goes. The thing I am liking right now is the change. I was not shy last season about my praise of what Brent did with this team – I think he’s done an excellent job squeezing the best out of this mediocre roster – in fact I think they just burned out at the end of the season because they were playing far above where they should have by all rights. The REAL personnel problems with this team are on the ice. I hope that ownership is willing to bend over and take it for the team, and send Hags and Kotalik..somewhere. Stajafail is like that picture of the dogs playing poker – absolutely horrible, but always there for some reason – I cant see any way of getting rid of him, and his salary and term are too high to bury him in the minors.

      In other words – If the next season starts with the same roster, the end of the season will bear largely the same result.

  • “The definitions of responsibility may have been blurred in the past, but the picture is pretty clear now.

    Feaster and Sutter stress communication, and the duo also has the ear of president Ken King and the NHL club’s ownership group.

    “Not that you’re always going to agree on things, but to have such a very strong but resourceful discussion coming to an outcome on decisions … with myself and Jay and Ken, the three of us do work close together,” Sutter said.”


    I found this very telling. So much for Ken King not wanting anything to with hockey ops and just “managing people.”

    • icedawg_42

      I think (That is to say I HOPE) that means more along the lines that Brent Sutter has more input to player personnel decisions rather than KK having input into what happens on the ice.

  • I think we will sign Tanguay, but your comment on having it backwards is interesting. If you listen to Warrener on the Fan (the most honest media voice I’ve heard in along time), he’s always stated that Tanguay would not be a slam-dunk to re-sign. He obviously has the inside knowledge on him and the obvious assertion is that Tanguay will go to the highest bidder. Of course, that all could’ve changed after his TB experience, but still, interesting to see what happens there…..