This is one of the funniest movies known to mankind. The humour is subtle but deliberate and there are more underlying messages than Wilson counts scoring chances in a week’s worth of Flames games. Does this clip remind you of anything or anyone that we talk about often on this site?
Much like the poor bugger in the clip, teetering on the brink of death, but not quite there, the Calgary Flames have been teetering between wins and losses, but always maintaining the stench of mediocrity, which we all know is a slow painful death.
I’M NOT DEAD YET…
Indeed the Flames are far from finished. It is still early in the season and Calgary is not far enough from the pack to say they can’t make up ground in the standings and turn this thing around before the search and rescue becomes a search and retrieve. However, there is going to have to be something that comes from this team, some spark of life that shows the fan base that this season, this team is worth supporting and fighting for.
If we see John Cleese’s character as Jay Feaster, and the Eric Idle as any willing GM in the NHL, we see that no matter how much the Jay man wants to strike a deal to get rid of some dead weight, there just isn’t a buyer in the market… right now. Why not now? Well the simple explanation is that people just don’t want to take on dead weight, and no matter how good of a job you do with lawyer speak Jay, GM’s can still see the crap all over what you’re offering.
I have no doubt in my mind that Feaster is probably working the phones almost every day, but there is little incentive for a team that is doing well to find any need or value in any Flames player as we speak. When talking about any move the Flames make, the overwhelming factor has to be something that will benefit this team in the future, more than it benefits it at the moment. There is no instant fix, because the Flames cannot trade their marketable players to teams that are in the same state as Calgary, it does them absolutely no good. The Flames can also not trade their marketable players to elite contenders because they simply don’t need them…for now.
YOU’RE NOT FOOLING ANYONE…
At the beginning of the year, Feaster and company did their best to convince a sceptical and impatient fan base that the Flames were a better team and, a legit playoff contender. He went so far to call out the skeptics that were advocating a full blown re-build, similar to that of the Edmonton Oilers.
"I’m sorry – Edmonton finished where last year, caller? Want to wager on where we finish relative to Edmonton this year? I’m tired of this question, I’ll tell you very honestly. I’m getting a little sour. how many teams… every year, for the last 10 years, five years, eight years, have finished in the bottom five, bottom seven, bottom 10? They’ve had to pick anywhere from No. 1 to No. 10 year after year after year after year, and they still wander in the desert. And they’re no closer to getting out than they were 10 years ago."
Jay might be eating his words this year, and crow will be just the appetizer. Now I’m not saying that the Flames GM was feeding a line to the media and to the fans. I honestly think he believed in what he said then, and probably still does. I believed Jay as well. I liked the bold move, especially when he told the public to ”Write it Down”, when talking about the Flames return to the post-season.
The start of this season has been a polar opposite of Jay’s claims though, and so far his boasts of a head-to-head record with the Oilers is looking like a lot of hot air.
Will this continue? It’s not likely. The Edmonton Oiler will probably not continue their early trends and will eventually begin to slide in the standings. Is that going to matter to their fan base? Not in the least! They play a very exciting brand of hockey and the fans see what is in store for the organization in the near future. Flames fans on the other hand leave each game feeling more frustrated and filled with more and more contempt. Rather than seeing a not very talented team, giving it their all, and playing exciting hockey, they witness a bunch of stiffs playing through the motions like they don’t really give a damn.
Does this fall on Feaster and/or Sutter? Many of you will say it does, but I don’t agree. This is a problem with the players through and through. I chatted with Pat [Steinberg] on overtime last night and he brought up exhibit ‘A’ on this point. The Flames pathetic powerplay is a Jekyll and Hyde story. The PP that is executed during games is not the system that is being implemented or run in practices. Why not? This is not a fault of the coach, and certainly not the GM. When you run a system over and over again in practice and then when it comes to game time, the players take it upon themselves to implement a different style, the knocks and criticisms have to fall on the players and the leadership.
You can wait. Flames fans won’t need to wait until next year, after the numerous contracts expire and all that money comes off the cap, but you will need to wait longer than you would like. As the trade deadline approaches, there will be more teams looking to shore up their rosters to make a playoff run. That’s when Calgary will have more leverage in trade scenarios. Teams will then be looking at Calgary for missing pieces to their puzzles, and this is when will most likely see the possible departure of people like Bourque, Moss, Jokinen, Kiprusoff and even Jarome Iginla.
Honestly, don’t expect any tinkering moves, they are a waste of time and resources at this point. As Pat said on overtime, the Flames cannot make a trade just for the sake of making a trade. The only deal we are likely to see happen buzz-wise or sooner-than-later, would be a deal to move Bourque; and that can’t come soon enough. All other assets are pretty much locked until the Flames have some bargaining power.
As for the fan base, we might as well get used to this frustration and aggravation for a while. News is all over twitter right now about the Kyle Turris signing in Phoenix, and with that comes the speculation of where he will now end up. At 2 years and $2.8M combined, I’d like to see the Flames take a shot at him. That being said, Bourque is the only name that comes to mind, and he would be a good fit for the Coyotes, reuniting with Daymond Langkow. On the flip side to that coin is the fact that there are probably a lot of teams interested that have more to offer the Yotes than Calgary does, or is willing to give up; so don’t get to excited.
On the topic of excitement, wouldn’t it be nice if Flames fans could experience this level of excitement over someone in our line-up? Have we ever been THIS excited about anyone??