Postgame: Advantage Darryl

Well, in his first game against his former team behind the Kings bench, it was Darryl Sutter coming out victorious against the Calgary Flames, taking a fairly impressive 4-1 win on Saturday night.  It was one of those games that was really close to begin, and fairly evenly played throughout, but after LA took their 1-0 lead, they slowly controlled more and more of the game.  It snaps Calgary’s eight game winning streak on Saddledome ice.

What Happened

I thought both teams came to play in the first period, with scoring chances generated on both sides.  It was even, both goaltenders came to play, and it looked exactly like the type of game we’d be seeing.  Los Angeles plays things very close to the vest, and they didn’t give up a ton, and when they did, Jonathan Quick was equal to the task.  Both team’s had a powerplay, but things were scoreless after one.

It took just 27 seconds of second period play for the Kings to open the scoring on an unfortunate bounce.  The puck skipped over Mark Giordano’s stick at the defensive blueline, allowing Mike Richards a breakaway opportunity.  He’d slip it under Miikka Kiprusoff for his 14th of the season.  At 3:02, Matt Greene’s third of the season came from the right point on an innocuous looking shot.  With traffic in front, the puck got by Kiprusoff for a two goal lead.  A powerplay for the Kings allowed them the opportunity to stretch the lead to three.  Anze Kopitar would score his 14th from the left side of the net to put this one a little further out of reach.  But, a powerplay for the Flames gave Mike Cammalleri a nice moment in his first game back with the team.  Anton Babchuk’s point shot was tipped very nicely by #93 for his first with Calgary and tenth of the season.

The third period was fairly low event overall, with just five scoring chances combined between the teams.  That played right into the hands of the Kings, as they’re as good a team as you’ll find in shutting things down.  Dustin Brown’s empty netter at 19:03 sealed another win for LA; they now have points in 11 of the 12 games coached by Darryl.

One Good Reason…

…why the Flames lost?  The opening minutes of the second period did them in for the most part, as the Richards goal kinda sent th team into a temporary tailspin.  The Kings scored one more in that span, added another one later on the powerplay and then shut things down in a very impressive manner.  Calgary wasn’t overly bad at all tonight, they were pretty competitive but ended up losing the game against a pretty decent opponent.  The Flames also got worked pretty well by LA’s top players, as Iginla, Cammalleri et al had trouble keeping up to the Kopitar, Williams, and Brown line.

Red Warrior

I liked Blair Jones, centering Calgary’s third line with Blake Comeau and Lance Bouma.  He saw time both shorthanded and on the powerplay, but he was pretty effective even strength, which is why he gets the nod.  Jones spent a lot of time in the offensive end and the puck was constantly on his stick when the Flames were moving north.

Sum It Up

Hey, you win some, you lose some.  The Flames played a fairly effective game overall, but the Kings are a pretty good squad, and they played better.  Brent Sutter said it best following the game: in a playoff game, if you play well for 55 but get away from it for five, you’re going to lose.  That’s kinda what happened on this night.  Now, the Flames head off on the road for a tough pair of games in California followed by a matchup with the Oilers in one week.

  • Brent G.

    I bet after the game both sutters sounded alike. Couldn’t tell from tone who won and who lost. Good on Cammy gettin that goal. Now the Flames will go on a 4 game losing streak and follow that with a 4 game winning streak. Go figure. Can someone explain this team to me?

  • Brent G.

    I can explain.Flames have a GM that is delusional,he thinks the flames are going to make the playoffs and contend,they have a coach that can’t coach and a team that is way to slow with no heart.Even if the flames makes the playoffs there is no way they are getting past any of the top 4 teams in the west.Start the rebuild now

    • Captain Ron

      We get it. Your trailers on fire so while you were bored you went to the neighbors place and borrowed his computer to comment on this site since there is little to talk about on Oilers Nation. Maybe you were able to salvage your Twinkies before it all went down. Be sure to let us know how Tambo and the boys are doing in a future troll would you.

      Now beat it.

    • Brent G.

      Hows your rebuild working out for you? Your team will be right back in the draft lottery again this year. Everyone of your players is injury prone and the ones you are drafting are just as big of pussies. Taylor Hall over Seguin really? One has won the Stanley cup and is doing awesome this year the other is one play away from getting destroyed by a concussion a la Stevens on Lindros.

      • supra steve

        Problem is (and it gives me no pleasure to say it), Oilerfan is mostly right. A good portion of knowledgable Flame fans agree, time for the rebuild. I have trouble blaming Brent though, having seen similar results with several coaching options now. As for the Hall/Seguin comparison, does anyone believe that if Seguine had been drafted by the oil/and Hall gone to Boston, that Seguin would have his cup in Edmonton and Hall would be floundering in Boston? I didn’t think so. Seguine has a cup because of his own good fortune in landing in Boston and the perpetual mistakes of the TML organization, end of story. While I’m not a Feaster basher, I am troubled by his most recent trade. Happy to see Cammi back, but still, where is this leading us? I’m still hopefull that he has a plan that allows for a rebuild of some sort. Sooner would be better then later as,like Oilerfan stated, this Flames team will get pulverized in the playoffs. Read your history books, with one exception in the past 20+ years, it’s the Flames destiny.

          • ChinookArchYYC

            While we’re looking at history: There isn’t really much of a template out there for blowing it up and sucking for draft picks (aside from Pittsburgh and Washington, but Crosby and Ovechkin are first overall generational players). How is that working for teams like Edmonton? The Islanders? Columbus? Just because you get high draft picks is absolutely no guarantee of future success.

            The problem with a scorched earth blowup for picks is that you end up with a culture of losing, the team loses a significant amount of ticket revenue, and it becomes virtually impossible to sign decent free agents without massively overpaying (e.g. CBJ).

            I imagine that Feaster is looking at Philly as a template for a retool. Yes, they sucked in 2006-2007, but you know what they picked with that 2nd overall? JVR. It is 5 years later and he is just now starting to be of any help. Richards and Carter came at #11 and #24 back in 2003. They didn’t really kick in until 2007 (Richards) and 2008 (Carter).

            It isn’t as if the Flames are awful (Edmonton). They are a middle of the pack team. If this team wins 4 more games in the first half then they are sitting in 6th, 1 point back of Detroit.

            The margin between winning and losing in the NHL is thin. I think that we are 4 players away from being a legitimate playoff team.

            Bartschi and Rheinhart are coming, the cupboard is stocked with upcoming goalie talent. Do I trade Iginla if it can garner an under-30 #1 center? Of course. Do I trade him for picks? Sounds like a recipe for a lot of looooong winters in Calgary. But hey, at least it would be easy to get tickets for the games. Anybody here remember how easy it was to get free tickets to games in 1998? I sure do.

            On another note: Has it occurred to anybody that maybe Feaster *HAS* shopped Iginla, Kipper, etc. and the offers just aren’t that good? Imagine the uproar if Feaster traded Iggy for a couple of late first rounders?

        • Brent G.

          The thing a lot of people overlook in these teams that rebuilt from the ground up is that while they did rebuild a lot through the draft, they also added some very key components via trade. Chicago is a perfect example. If you look at that Stanley cup winning team you have Toews, Kane, Seabrook, and Keith who they obviously did draft but a lot of that team was built through smart trades/signings.

          They do need to improve through the draft but by trading and adding better players is a BIG part of this. Quite frankly when you look at some of the best players in the NHL today most arent drafted in the top 5 or even top 10. Sure if you have a chance to get a Crosby a tank job will quickly be rewarded but that rarely ever happens. The teams that win are the ones that draft well beyond the lottery. There are some awesome players in the NHL today that were no where near that top 10 status. To name a few, Kesler (albeit I hate him a lot), Keith, Franzen, Sharp, etc. The problem with this complete rebuild idea is that too many times you end up with Taylor Hall. He is a good 50-60 point player but is he really going to turn things around for you?

          BTW my point in a previous point about Hall wasnt so much about the championships because of course it was more circumstance than anything, just look at the difference in their stats this year and that tells the whole story.

  • Franko J

    The thing that upset me was the crowd. On a game that should have had so much emotion they had all their emotion sucked out of them by that stupid salute to the 100th anniversary of the stampede. If you want a rockin boisterous crowd play rock or dance music, if you want a library play country music.

    • Brent G.

      It all started going downhill with that really $hitty singer singing the Canadian national anthem and sucked every bit of emotion and excitement from every person watching.


      Agreed!!!!! the fans need to step their game up!!!! Instead of acting like their at a friggin seniors home!!!! the country music had a little to do with it, but for the most part the fans at the dome have fallen off huge!!!! I personally dont feel like its a Game if I dont get kicked out,(air horn) and get everybody around me to get right into it!!!!! AND DONT DROP THE DIME ON ME WHEN IM BLASTIN MY HORN, OR WHINE CAUSE ITS “LOUD” …. Take your dress off and put some pants on guy

  • RKD

    Tough to lose, really thought the Flames were going to all 4 at home. I’ll take 6 out 8 points.

    Darryl is a great coach, 409 wins. Taken every team he’s coached to a division title. Took the Flames to game 7 of the Stanley Cup final.

    He’s brought the Kings back from the dead, they are now closing in on the Pacific division title.

    Darryl 1 Brent 0

  • Brent G.

    I love how quickly everyone jumped all over Jones when he was traded for and the Flames basically gave up nothing. He has been good in the games I have watched him and got warrior of the game. Maybe people should reserve their judgements until these players play a couple of games. There was a time Jackman was referred to as “thing 2” and he is one of the better and consistent players on this team night in and night out. Ditto for Derek Smith…It’s almost like Feaster has some idea of what he is doing and why he is trading for the people he is yet the cracker jack factory needs to find fault in all of it. *rant over*

    • I personally don’t remember anyone denigrating Jones when he arrived…aside from some sarcastic comments about he might be “the answer” after the 9-0 beat down. That had less to do with him and more to do with the timing of the trade.

  • Franko J

    In the vain of Battleship:

    Darryl got the first hit on the Flames.

    Tonight the Kings remind me of the Flames of 2004. Darryl has the team finishing their hits, pressure on the forecheck, and timely goaltending. Every game I watch Mike Richards play against Calgary, he always finds a way to score. What is it with the Flames and guys named “Richards”? Always burning the Flames.

    I believe with the return of Cammalleri the irony is that either Jokinen or Jay Bouwmeester will be moved along from the Flames. Going into next season, how can the Flames keep four players making 6.5 mill?

    Is it me or has TJ Brodie passed Giordano as the most consistent defenseman on the Flames?

    Tonight listening to overtime with Pat he mentioned that Ken King feels this team is doing different things with Feaster compared to with Darryl Sutter. I would have said to KK:
    “How is giving up a 2nd round pick any different from the last GM.?”

    Apparently with the last trade with the Canadians, does this also mean that the organization direction is to compliment and build around Iginla?

    With a new regime, favorite players are sometimes are no longer the darling choices and with that change is inevitable. Will Rammo be Kippers replacement next season?

    @ Oilersfan4

    I can explain as well, our GM may be delusional, at least has the guts to make a trade? What has Tambellini done for the Oilers? Both coaches are a saw off, don’t care for either one of them. As for comparing teams, yes the Flames may be slower than the Oilers, however, how can you compare heart? If the Oilers had heart they wouldn’t use injuries as the reason they are losing.

  • Franko J

    Pretty funny reading some of the comments on here, what with the trolling oil fan and subsequent responses from the flames boosters. Ultimately it’s all irrelevant who wins the argument as both organizations are, to put it mildly, struggling. One is stockpiling assets which may or may not develop into actual NHL players while the other continues to presume that repeating the fruitless strategies of the past 7 years will somehow get them a championship. I’m not sure which team is better off in this situation, but it’s become somewhat sad to see this deplorable state of hockey in Alberta.

    • Franko J

      My theory why these organizations are where they are?

      Back in the 80’s the Oilers were the best team in the league, therefore, Calgary built a team to beat the Oilers. Each organization pushed each other to become better.
      However, due to salary restraints and poor drafting by each team starting in the early 90’s, and with no playoff appearances against each other since 1991, their is no desire for each team to beat the other.They seldom see each other as threat to winning the Stanley Cup. That threat or measuring stick is through Vancouver now.

      Secondly, if I remember correctly, prior to drafting Toews, weren’t the Chicago Blackhawks a team struggling and pretty much in the same context as the Oilers? Dale Tallon did a superb job building the Hawks back into a strong organization and a solid team. But I bet the only thing you care about as a Hawk fan is to beat who? Detroit? Maybe Vancouver.

      Who has been the toughest team to supplant in the Central Division for the past 8 seasons? Detroit. So like the Oilers and Flames in the 80’s, the Hawks and the Wings build their teams for one thing. To beat one another. When you build a team to beat the top team on the Totem pole, I think it benefits both teams to provide a high level of winning.

  • flamesburn89

    Good summary Pat. Flames played some pretty decent hockey, had one bad stretch and it cost them. No shame in losing to the Kings, but that’s 2 points that the Flames allowed a contending team to pick up. I think the Flames have 36 games left, 18 against Pacific division teams. Can’t afford to many more slip-ups if they hope to make it to the post season. Btw, I couldn’t help but being impressed by the Kings. They were able to get some goals on the scoreboard, and basically just shut the Flames down. They kept the Flames to the outside, and had a very ‘structured’ game defensively.

  • Derzie

    Did Ottawa blow it up? No and they’re doing alright. Did Edmonton blow it up? Yes and they’re a mess. Does Detroit blow it up? No and they are always great. A blow up is not a path to anything other than change. It’s up to the architects of a team to assemble the pieces and structure. It’s clear the Flames are not blowing it up. They have a strong desire from the Ken Kings of the world to keep the seats full. They feel that a blow up would chase away the casual corporate fans that fill the majority of dome. They are right. From a hockey ops perspective, you suffer as a result. Toronto has been the poster child for this since forever. Calgary is a bit different in that the length of the season tix waiting list is hardly Leaf-size so the margin for error is much smaller. Calgary ‘fans’ will go away if the team loses. The Cammaleri move is a great heart pick but a lousy head pick. He does not fit the Sutter system. So he is either a rental or Sutter is targeted for greener pastures. I’m happy with any change. Status quo is the only option that boils my blood. The team on the ice right now differs greatly from this time last year so I’m pleased.

  • Willi P

    With regards to the game, I was quite disappointed (but not surprised) to see Brent give up on the OGI line so soon. This has been the money line for the last while. Brent is so predictable and impatient. He wrecks the chemistry of the team and then makes it easy to defend against when you stack all of your best talent (Iggy and Cammy) on one line.

    • Actually, the move was made so he could send Jokinen/Glencross out against Kopitar and then allow Iginla/Cammalleri a more favorable match-up.

      It was a sensible move. The top line was being outchanced. It didn’t yield any fruit, but it was done pretty late in the game too.

  • Derzie

    Regarding the Cammalleri trade confusion: I don’t really see it as a “swing for the fences” deal. While Cammalleri is a better hockey player, he isn’t *THAT* much better.

    We will be very happy if Cammalleri hits 60-70 points. Possibly a 10-15 point upgrade on Bourque.

    Feaster saw a chance to unload a long term contract, improve the hockey team in the short term, and bring in a possible future replacement for Kiprusoff.

    I fail to see how fielding a decent team that competes for a playoff spot really impacts the team that much with respect to a rebuild. The only real impact is picking at #10-15 instead of #5-10. Unless you are top 3, the chances of getting a future replacement for Iginla are slim.

    Is the club going to give up millions of dollars in ticket revenue just so that they can improve their drafting position by 5 or 6 spots? Especially given the fact that statistically speaking, it only really matters in the first round?

    Let me leave you with this: Is it possible that acquiring a 29 year old Mike Cammalleri is a setup move to prepare the team for life without Jarome?

    You still have to put a team on the ice during a rebuild, and the only advantage to sucking is picking a bit higher in the first round. Unless your owners are willing to *REALLY* suck (losing a ton of $$ in the process) and hope for a lottery pick (which is a risky route – Daigle, Stefan, Bonsignore, Lawton, etc. ), you might as well at least *try* to make the playoffs.

    • the forgotten man

      I think the acquisition of Cammi has taken Iginla off the market for this trade deadline. Depending on how things go will determine whether Iggy wants to stay & sign an extension of be traded at some point next summer or at the trade deadline. Iggy’s choice.

      Somebody should define blowing things up. The next month is going to tell us whether this team has any playoff hope. Even if we play well or not, if we lose to better top 8 teams like last night, we’re done by Feb 15th. So, what is stopping Feaster from blowing up the team but instead of Kipper & Iggy & JBO that everyone is saying is the preequisite for TNT, why wouldnt shopping & overpayments for the likes of Stempniak,Moss,Sarich, Hannan, Jackman, Kosto,Comeau,Babchuk be considered a significant demo job. I would even go to Oli, his cjoice & say Oli, you have had a great year, we love your game & your fit, we arent making the playoffs & we have a contender that will give us a 1st rounder for you. Talk to your wife & see if you want to go for it but know we are very interested in your services this summer(is it legal to do that?)

      If we are out of it & we get overwhelmed with an offer for Kipper, say Chicago feel they want a goalie to go on a run so they offer Crawford & a 1st for Kipper, do you do it? Or wait until summer & extort Steve Yzerman who knows Kipper fits the bill from the calibre & the $$$ for a self imposed cap in Tampa?

      Feaster is doing exactly what I would be doing, changing the $$$cap hit versus player asset. The days of healthy scratching & 3rd/4th line players being paid 3.0 to 4.0 mill is over. Cammi is a legit top 6, expensive yeah, but the direction we are heading, we’ll be fine carrying the contract next 2 years. Bourque was a 3.4mill 3rd liner, we had rookies playing top 2 lines over him, so good trade & many people are right, we still have to field a team that fans have hope if the stars align, we can challenge for a playoff spot while we develop our future Iggy. I think trading for Cammi does not change Feasters plan, in fact it sets up his plan very well. Sorry for the long rant. But when I see Oiler blogs talking about another blow it up, then I start thinking about how I define blowing things up.

  • the forgotten man

    If feaster truly wants to make a run in the playoffs this year, then Brent needs to be relieved of duties ASAP. For feaster to keep him on board reflects on the overall unseriousness of this franchise for as long as I can remember. Brent is out coached on most nights and with the overall parity in the league this makes a huge difference. Even if Brent is able to squeeze his team into the playoffs does anyone have even a smidgen of hope he can out coach his counterpart over a 7 game series? In this scenario I see Brent as an even larger liability…see Devils flameout a few years back for exhibit A…that flameout alone should have superceded Darryl’s blind nepotism in hiring butter originally. In a playoff series a good coached team actually has to adapt and adapt quickly…Brent has shown me nothing to indicate this is in the realm of possibility.
    A game changer coach is actually a game changer…seeing San Francisco go from bottom feeder to a winner again yesterday only reinforces how much impact, good or bad, a coach can have…Alex Smith was left for dead until Harbaugh showed up…maybe a new coach can teach Backlund how to bury empty net chances…that would be a start, no??

  • the forgotten man

    @Casey W

    Whoevers in charge here at flames nation needs to give Casey W a writing position. Thanks for the most intelligent comments I have read on this site for a long time. Keep up the good work. I look forward to your column!

  • the forgotten man

    Look flames fan i don’t comment to bash the team i just think they should just take a different approach.One person commented that Bartschi and Reinhart are coming WOW plan the cup route in Calgary they are going to be contenders for years to come.I just say rebuild is the only option.Just think if they trade the following what are return might look like.
    IGINLA:1ST Round pick,a prospect,and a roster player
    Kipper:1st round pick ,and a prospect

    Then u add Jay-bo,Sarich and what they might fetch with your own 1st round pick that pretty good start to a rebuild and restocking.Then tank it for a couple years and get high picks.
    Now on to the Oilers i know they suck but they are in year 2 of a rebuild.I can assure you the KIDS are not the problem its the vets.Hall he can fly and has a nice shot,Hopkins looks like the next Joe Sakic,and Eberle has the sickest hand i’ve seen.What do the flames have one aging sniper.

  • the forgotten man

    I’ve said it a number of times. Love seeing Cammy back, one of the worst non moves darryl made. Basically it was Cammy for Jaybo, and howd that work out? A “blow-up”? Basically I define it as “intellectual honesty”. Who said that? Let’s be honest there are problems. I did a quick study of the top 5 picks since 2000 and 2/3rds turned into all-stars (those that didn’t the majority came from 3 teams columbus, florida and NYI). This team does appear to have some in the cupboads but no blue chips, and no Sven isn’t a blue chip. My concern is when kipper, iggy are gone who’s to take over? No power forward or young scorer in sights, lots of “could be a decent player”. Goal? Irving/karlsson? Ramo? I’m skeptical. Why is he playing in the K? Because he couldn’t make it here. The khl is lower quality. There are numerous examples of players who do well there but can’t cut it here. Basically I believe a rebuild is needed and sutter/feaster are not the ones to be involved.

  • RexLibris

    Edmonton is often categorized alongside Columbus, the Islanders, and, at least last year, Ottawa, as teams that have “blown things up to rebuild”, with the models of Chicago and Pittsburgh being used as targets that those teams are attempting to achieve. The Islanders and Blue Jackets comparison with Edmonton is understandable, but historically incorrect. Edmonton’s ownership chose to dismantle the team and rebuild using the draft beginning in January of 2010 (and when I say dismantle, really it was less of a dismantling and more of a wait-for-a-strong-wind-to-knock-it-down). So while the team has basically been bad since 2007, it has only been in the last two years that there has been a strategy of moving veterans and hoarding picks. Case in point: the 2008 draft saw the Oilers take Eberle 22nd overall and then have to sit on the sidelines and wait until the 4th round before they had another pick. That’s not a rebuilding organization.

    Rebuilds don’t always work, but neither do retoolings. For all the talk of the Flames trying to be like Ottawa and Philadelphia on this site has anyone mentioned the success rate of those franchises? I would also argue that it is far too soon to declare the Ottawa rebuild complete. Columbus and the Islanders are horribly-run and managed teams that have squandered nearly a generation’s worth of drafted talent. They are often mentioned as cautionary tales for a reason. And there are a lot of fans in Edmonton who are deeply concerned that the team might head in that direction, but most of the teams that have committed to a long-rebuild have spent between three and five years at the bottom of the league (the Penguins chose, between ’02 and ’06 chose 5th, 1st, 2nd, 1st and 2nd, while the Hawks between ’04 and ’07 chose 3rd, 7th, 3rd and 1st).

    Each team has it’s own way of getting to the top and holding out franchises like Detroit can be a little misleading. As I have mentioned here before, the Red Wings were one of the big-market, predatory franchises that would routinely complement a good (and drafted) core that they built by suffering through the “Dead Things” era and by some very fortunate scouting. Their success has also straddled the old and new CBA and it remains to be seen how they adapt to the still-evolving new NHL.

    I absolutely understand why any Flames fan would be excited, or at least, reinvigorated with the moves Jay Feaster has made and the commitment amongst team management to make the playoffs. The window on this group hasn’t entirely closed and the desire to see just one more win, one more goal, one more success with players who have made up such an integral part of the city for a decade or more. The chances might be one-in-a-million, but like the movie says “then you’re saying there’s a chance!” and for the time-being Jay Feaster is arguably doing right by the fans in acquiring a better group of talent to give Iginla and Kiprusoff one more chance at winning something in Calgary before turning the page.

    The Hall-Seguin discussion is a pointless argument. Seguin may very well have two cup rings before Hall even sees the playoffs. Not because Seguin is a better player, but because Brian Burke made a mistake of near-catastrophic proportions. If anyone wants to create a dialogue about Seguin’s success, it should revolve around the Kessel trade, not which player was taken first.

    Finally, Hall isn’t floundering in Edmonton(14-16-30, in 35gp). He has dominated games and many times been the best player on the ice for either team. His numbers have been good to great for a player trying to carry a team without much help while Whitney, Gilbert, Nugent-Hopkins and Eberle are all injured. If any fans in this league should understand what that is like, it should be Flames fans.

  • A Small Sample of Feaster’s Agenda:

    Langkow: 35
    Regher: 31
    Hagman: 32
    Kotalik: 33
    Bourque: 30

    Byron: 22
    Comeau: 25
    Jones: 25
    Butler: 25
    Stempniak: 28
    Cammalleri: 29

    Everybody lean in real close to your monitor for this next sentence. THE REBUILD HAS BEGUN. There’s not going to be any scorched earth. It’s going to be slow and methodical and if we don’t get an absolute gem of an offer for Iginla, we’ll probably see him play the rest of his days with those same two C’s on his chest. If you require nuclear devastation, you should consider becoming an Oilers fan; they have enough scorched earth for everyone. And anyone that thinks Edmonton is in their second year of rebuilding is brand new to this circus.

    “An idealist is one who, on noticing that roses smell better than a cabbage, concludes that it will also make better soup.” – H.L. Mencken

    • RexLibris

      I’d suggest we create a subtle distinction when talking about the Oiler’s rebuild then, to help clarify our frame of reference. I would suggest that the Oilers were deliberately rebuilding beginning in January of ’10 (that is the date that most of the people who cover the team give as the date that management made a clear decision). By the same token, I would also say that many of the pieces that the Oilers are using in this rebuild can date back as far as 2004 (Devan Dubnyk). So in that regard, one could argue that fate has been rebuilding the Oilers (by virtue of poor performances and the extraordinary luck of having Darcy Regier match the Vanek offer-sheet) since approximately the time of the lockout. The management structure has also changed (despite what many would like to say) and therefore, just as Feaster can’t be held responsible for Matt Stajan’s contract, neither can Tambellini be held accountable for the loss of 2nd and 3rd round pick in 2008 (compensation for the Dustin Penner offer-sheet).

      I think Feaster has done well in balancing the roster of the Flames when it comes to age and valuable entry-level contracts. Whereas Darryl Sutter brought an almost intractable hockey-mind to the table, Feaster has more of a business angle in his approach. The only concern in Feaster’s approach thus far is that in moving Hagman he retained a small amount of the cap-hit, and in moving Kotalik/Regehr he had to “sweeten the pot” substantially which he has now compounded with the moving of Bourque. I’m not going to re-hash the Cammalleri trade, that’s, like, SO five minutes ago. So I wouldn’t characterize Feaster’s moves and positioning going into the off-season as a rebuild, but rather a renovation. He’s not mortgaging the future for the present as Sutter did, but rather, if I can take the metaphor a little further, he’s taking out a line-of-credit to make some smaller structural and cosmetic changes. I’m also in the camp that says Iginla likely finishes his career with the Flames, if not uninterrupted, then by a brief trade and re-sign next year.

      And yes, if Calgary is in any need of scorched earth, well, the Oilers still have Khabibulin and Horcoff available for a limited time only. Just dial 780-OIL-4YOU. Operators are standing by. It’s not as exciting as this guy, but what can you do.

      Oh, and out of curiosity, what is that thing on Sutter’s face in the top photo? I don’t remember seeing that before. Is he having an aneurysm or something?

      @VF, if you’re reading this: I hope you have a refillable coffee card. And might I suggest a switch to decaf or cold-brewed coffee.

  • Thats right flames fans blame the fans for why your team sucks,MAYBE its because they really do suck or maybe its the management that sucks for thinking this team is a contender when they are really a pretender.Do you really think they are better than Vancouver,Chicago,San Jose,or even St louis they would not stand a chance they would need 15 games in a series to win 4.So before blaming the fans take a look at the team there slow and old which = SUCKS

  • supra steve

    Sorry flames fans about some of my comments.As
    a oilers fan sometimes i can get carried away.Just want a good old battle of alberta again.Where both teams are good and competing.

    • Captain Ron

      The fact that you didn’t get it the first time shows a certain lack of intelligence. Perhaps I gave you too much credit and it was just your tent that went up in Flames. If you want to come to this site as an Oilers fan and chat like RexLibris does in a thoughtful and intelligent manner then I’m sure others here would engage with you and even welcome the discussion. Attempting to give us advice like your somehow an NHL team rebuild expert with dumb sarcastic comments only makes you sound like an idiot.

      Don’t try to “help us” with comments like “your team sucks and managment sucks and Bartschi and Reinhart are coming plan the parade route” and expect anyone to take you seriously. This is elementary school yard nonsense. At the end of it all you fake some sort of laughable apology. YOU might need more help than your team does. If you actually give a crap go back and read your own blather and ask yourself what did you actually add to the discussion? If you have any sense whatsoever I think you’ll realize what the rest of us already know.

      So run along now until you grow up some.

      • supra steve

        I remember coming home when I was seven after being away for 8 hours and finding my dog had s_it on the rug. I could tell Snoopy was sorry and couldnt help it, 8 hours is a long time to hold it. But when my dad saw that turd, he beat the s_it out of that dog. Thats what your letter reminded me of Captain Ron, maybe a bit harsh considering Oilerfan has already shown contrition. Now I’m off to see my therapist, thanks.

        • Captain Ron

          Steve, I’m sorry to hear of your unfortunate experiences while growing up having to see your dog being abused. I could share similar experiences from my youth. Hitting an animal only teaches them to fear you. I can assure you that I don’t fit that mold. Our family dog has been with us for nearly 10 years and is with me nearly every minute of every day even when I travel. He is an amazing one hundred pound companion extrordinaire. We have never laid a hand on him.

          I stand by what I said to Oilerfan. If he was sincere about contributing to the discussion he would have taken the hint I gave him in comment #7 that was intended as good natured humor. Instead he continued to act like a bully (see comment #37) and was treated as such. Unlike a dog who’s contrition is always genuine, I didn’t think his apology was sincere and felt the need to emphasize the point. If he has any sense he’ll realize were doing him a favor for his future. With that said I’ll try and temper my enthusiasm a little going forward.

          Getting back to hockey……

          • Captain Ron

            Hey Capt Ron! Well Molly is a slim 93 pound best friend that hangs by my feet all day because I work from home. She will be 7 & has never had a hand lifted to her & never will. Well said to the Oiler child.

            It just blows me away that they feel there future will be guaranteed heaven for decades in the next few years(Sean). I think the only guarantee is death & taxes. I can guarantee Flames will be in Hockey Heaven at some point(not saying for how long) in the next 23 years as well. When the Oilers are playing these maturing kids so much so early, thats when bad injuries can happen & this concussion syndrome is taking its toll on the best of them. Nothing is guaranteed & I respect an organization that is trying to find a balance of giving competitive teams on the ice for not only the fans but for Season Ticket holders but also balance the need to be proactive for the future. Its a tough balance to maintain year after year after year & you will never keep everyone happy all of the time.

  • Captain Ron

    I feel for the Flames.

    They are so close to being an 8th round playoff team and getting kicked out in 6 games, or a 10th placed team.

    Id rather have hell for 3 years and heaven for 2 decades then purgatory for eternity.

    • Robhouli

      There are no guarantees that 3 years of hell are going to create 20 years of heaven. Granted Hall, Paajarvi, Eberle, Smid, Peckham and Hopkins are mightily talented hockey players. When these players sign their next contracts do you seriously think they can keep all this young talent and have some veteran leadership. How can you make fun of the Flames when Edmonton hasn’t seen the playoffs for 5 years ( not 3 years of hell but 5), and it doesn’t look bright for this year…… At least in Calgary hockey still means something at the end of March, we will be fighting for a playoff spot (hopefully, LOL).

  • Captain Ron

    @ Casey Woods and Derzie:

    – Detroit sucked pretty hard to get Yzerman.

    – all of the Cup finalists since the lockout (and even before then) have drafted about half their roster. Trades and signings are important and necessary, but not as much as drafting.

    – all of the Cup finalists had 3 or 4 superstars in their 20’s when they won the Cup, including Detroit, and they drafted them all.

    – you can’t win the Cup without 3 or 4 young superstars and the only way to get them is to draft them.

    – teams have blown their rebuilds. Other have won it all. So rebuilding from scratch is about a 50% chance to win the Cup? I’ll take it. What are our odds of winning a Cup?

    – Pittsburgh has rebuilt from scratch twice and has won the Cup from each effort.

    – Cinderella teams never actually win the Cup and never go back.

    – Bad management ruins any plan and I don’t accept it as an argument against a rebuid; ie. CBJ & NYI

    – Iginla and Kipper aren’t leading us to a Cup in their 30’s and are worth more as trade bait. Fear of screwing up those trades is not an option. Boston screwed up the Thornton trade and still won the Cup, afterall. Unless you’d rather watch Iggy go for 600. Depends on priorities I suppose.

    – To emulate Philly we should’ve traded Iginla years ago. Philly stays competitive because Holmgren is willing to deal a Richards and a Carter. How does that compare with the Flames? Philly also had to suck briefly to get Van Riemsdyk and Carter.

    I’m tired of trading away the future just in order to run in place. Or refusing to move valuable assets due to nostalgia.

    I’ll just never understand the fan who is content to watch his team hope to maybe sometimes barely make the playoffs just to get pounded in the 1st round.

    • the forgotten man


      I am with you wolf on all of your points…as I earlier mentioned the flames do not have the CHEAP young talent in place to supplement the free agent and veteran signings on whom you blow your CAP load. The flames are yet embarking on another fools errand with similar results to the last 22 years. Many flames fans do not even know what sustained success can even feel like…only us older farts who were around for the mid to late 80s can appreciate sustained contending teams…I think we all suffer from a form of normalcy bias…we accept mediocrity as though that is all that is realistically our fate.

      Feasters approach to “reloading” is akin to the ol have your cake and eat it too!

      Furthermore, semantics aside, doesn’t reloading mean you actually had something to begin with??

      Onwards and upwards.

  • Captain Ron

    @Kevin R Hey Kevin, thanks for the slap on the back. Much appreciated. You do realize our dogs are a little on the heavy side for Goldens eh… He He

    @ The Wolf It’s hard to disagree with any of your points and I completely understand where you are coming from.. But a comparison between Iggy and Carter, Richards is only valid in my mind given the ages they are at currently. Neither of those players could touch Jarome when he was in his prime as they are right now. Considering the management in place at the time trading Jarome when he was in his prime would have been very risky. How would the fan base have reacted to seeing him possibly holding a cup in the air wearing another teams uniform? Consider the backlash the team owners, mangement would have had to endure at a time when the team was having a hard time filling the building already. It would have been really ugly. Jarome is a lock for the Hall of Fame where those two are questionable at best going forward. One thing appears to be pretty clear whether we like it or not the owners/managment are going to give it a go with key members of this team, add to it as best they can and go for it one last time. If we can land a top center, and another high end defenceman through free agency or trade we could be a legit playoff team. The word contender on the other hand I’m not so sure about.

    • Captain Ron

      You are correct, but then Boston fans were syaing the same about Thornton winning it all in San Jose and look who had the last laugh.

      I just think that there’s too much of a cult of personality that surrounds Iginla to the point that the team has pretty much painted itself into a corner with him for all of the reasons you’ve stated. It’s acceptable to be mediocre merely because we have a 500 goal superstar. I don’t think this team gets serious about real improvement until he’s out of the picture. Which is sad, because this team has criminally squandered an unbelieveable, once in a generation asset (I was a huge Iggy fan until game 7, 2006 – but that’s a different story).

      I’ve pretty much resigned myself to the fact that this team is not going to do a rebuild until forced to, probably in 2-3 years, or will continue to sell off certian pieces of the future while trying to work in some younger guys and make FA signings when possible.

      It may very well keep us in the hunt. What I find frustrating is that I want more. Call me greedy, I guess.

      You’re correct in that it seems obvious now that Iginla will indeed never be moved as ownership wants him to retire a Flame. Unless Iggy changes his mind one day……

      I just hope we don’t lose him for nothing, but if I had to bet, I’d say he signs a 3 year extension to match Tanguay’s term at, probably at 5 million per season.

      This is also why I wanted them to make a hard push for Spezza the last 2 years. Not everyone likes him, but he’s sure taken a step forward this year and finally would’ve given us a true #1 center. Not sure if it would’ve ever happend, and we’ll never get him now, but I just hate treading water. Rebuild or trade whatever you have to to get those missing pieces, just stop the annual battle for 8th.