Postgame: It’s Over



I’m sure some people will be disappointed with the Flames’ 5-2 win today, as it drops them to 13th overall draft-wise; but I don’t care. It was nice to see them come out with a respectable effort in the team’s last game of the year.

The Recap

The period started off well for the Flames, as Akim Aliu would get his first ever NHL goal courtesy of Luca Sbisa’s skate. The goal wrapped up a nice shift for Aliu, as he crushed Cam Fowler with a hit moments before his goal. Aliu would get in on the action again, as he lined up Fowler with another hit, creating quite the scrum in front of the Flames bench. Of note: Mike Cammalleri was right in the scrum. Love that guy. The end result would be a 4 minute power play for the Flames, but nothing would come of it. As the period was winding down, Henrik Karlsson made a pretty nice split leg save to keep the Flames up. Even though the Flames would generate 7 shots in the period, none of them would be counted as chances. The Ducks had 5 chances on 8 shots.

The second period was quite tepid until a strange sequence around the 11-minute mark: the Flames scored on the play, as Curtis Glencross buried a back-door shot-but Mark Giordano would get a “high-sticking” call for his skate hitting Andrew Cogliano in the face. The following few minutes could only be described as sublime-the Flames would take 3 more penalties, with two of those being iffy as well. As a result, Anaheim would tie the game up on the power play as Bobby Ryan would get his 30th past Karlsson at 13:33. The Flames would respond before the end of the period though, as Jay Bouwmeester would get his 5th of the season on a one-timer-and just 24 seconds later, Anton Babchuk would add to the total with his second of the year, also on a one-timer. The two teams would tie in the shot count with 9 apiece. The Ducks would win the chance count, 6-8.

Period Three was a real pressure cooker…ahah, ok, no. It was two teams that really didn’t care anymore playing an easy period. Aliu would get his second of the game just before the 8 minute mark on another lucky deflection-but as the old adage goes, they don’t say how-only how many. Lee Stempniak would pot his 14th of the season about 10 minutes later off of a nice pass from Blair Jones. Bobby Ryan would finish it off, making it a bit more respectable for the Ducks with 27 seconds left. 

The Stars

1. Akim Aliu

2. Bobby Ryan

3. Henrik Karlsson

The Final

Not too much to say after this one except that we’re all done for this year. The post-mortems and analysis will come, but it’s nice to finish off the season on a winning note.

  • RexLibris

    Congratulations to Aliu. He deserved a better fate than Downie and I hope he begins a new career. If he stays a Flames then he might give me a reason to perhaps, maybe, not cheer against the Flames in the post-season as hard as I normally do. 😉

    Anyway, nice to see the fans rewarded with a win to end the season. Not sure it helps the draft position, but that’s another worry for another day.

  • loudogYYC

    Let the dissecting & speculation begin. Gotta say, I am really intrigued with the thought of Aliu playing shotgun for Backlund & Baerschte. I like his game & I like the fact he scares the crap out of me so you wont see me throwing my jersey on the ice in front of him 🙂

    My consensus with Cammi. Love the guy & so what his cap hit is too high, with a youth movement, overpaid players like Cammi & JBO wont hurt this team & they are very neccessary to be competitive while the youth grows.

    I like the thought of having guys like Jackman & Jones on the ice too. This is going to be a real interesting off season. Forget about signing Grossman, Philly locked him up at a 3.5mill cap hit today. Maybe Carle?

    • jeremywilhelm

      Well, lets give the kid a chance. I think he’s more than a 4th liner if he can keep his focus. If we continue to go the path of drafting smaller more skilled players like Bears & Gaudreau, this guy will be a huge presence on the ice if he grows into an Ott type of player. Sorry for trying to be a little positive on this toilet season we’ve had. Yeah I know, he’ll probably show up in training camp over weight & out of shape & not only not make the club but gets cut loose in Abbotsford. There, is that more realistic & keep everyone happy.

  • Vintage Flame

    I was at the game today and I too felt happy for the kid Aliu to not only pot his first, but also get his second… even if they came with some help from sloppy play from Hiller.

    All that aside, during the game, Kent asked me how Aliu looked live and in colour, and based on what I saw, Justin is pretty bang on. I too see him as that tweener player but he could possibly move up to someday be a capable 4th liner. I see that as about it though. As Wilhelm said, he does need to work on his skating.. a lot. Right now his is a player that likes to play on the periphery, but will move in to deliver the big hit when given the chance. He needs to translate that into hockey plays as well, and then he might find a spot on the 4th, someday.

    One thing I really liked about him, is his ability to get under the skin of the Ducks, like within minutes. He has an edge to go with his affinity for the big hit. Not sure if anyone got to see on TV what led up to the misconducts he took with Parros, but Aliu went right at the Ducks bench and bombed a wasps nest in there. He definitely can be a sh!t disturber.

    We’ll see what Ward can continue to do with him in Abby.

  • Truculence

    The fact that Ward has taken a kid who just a while earlier wasn’t even considered and ECHLer and has transformed him to a kid that people WANT to see in the NHL is just amazing in and of itself. We need Ward in Abbotsford, and we need to keep him there for as long as we can. It’s really nice to have an asset like that, that young players will listen to and will work hard for. If he can continue to develop the next generation(Reinhart, Ferland) than we can set ourselves up for at least a few of our picks making the jump to the NHL.

    Also picking 14th kinda sucks, yeah if we lost these last two games we would be picking 12th or so, which is a little better. But we did pick up Baertschi at 13th last year, so you still can find some gems that late, but looking back to 2005/2006 and on, it is not a bed of top flight NHLers in that picking area.

  • Vintage Flame

    Well if you wanna look at positives the Flames actually improved their standing position this year (9th this year, 10th last year). And it’s always nice to go out on a high note, picking 14th is not much different than picking 11-12.

  • Truculence

    I like Aliu. He can hit, fight, and is a big presence in front of the net, which he attacks with aplomb. If he can improve his skating and defensive coverage in the off-season, he might stick with the big club next year right of the bat. And it`s not like he is just a goon like triple L or Ivanans. He was actually a point-a-game producer in his last two years in junior, and has found the back of the net in the AHL more often than a lot of our other, more highly touted, rookies.

    To me, he is a very interesting rookie that can easily develop into a Jackman, Clutterbuck or Ott type player -just bigger and meaner. In other words, he doesn`t just project as a goon, although he is a more than capable pugilist.

  • RexLibris

    I’m with Justin on Aliu’s ceiling. That being said, if he can turn into a 4th line disturber, those players can be hard to find, so long as they are effective in the game.

    On another note, the Oil Kings are up two games to none on Brandon but Ferland had a goal and an assist in the game.

    The Flames WHL prospects right now have Baertschi in 2nd overall in points, Ferland in 39th, and Laurent Brossoit is the 2nd ranked goalie with a save % of .928 and a GAA of 1.83 (playing behind a stacked defensive group).

    As for drafting 14th overall, it’s a dog’s breakfast in the draft rankings between 5th and 15th right now, so they could walk away with anyone from Olli Maatta to Slater Koekkoek. One thing seems pretty certain though, is that Alex Galchenyuk won’t get past Washington’s Colorado pick at 11th.

    • SmellOfVictory

      If Galchenyuk does last until 11th and the Flames lose out on him because they decided to win two meaningless games, I’m going to poop on Cammalleri’s doorstep (I blame him most for the past two wins).

  • beloch

    More good news on the Baertschi front:

    6 points in his last two playoff games! So far he’s at 17 points in 6 games over the entire playoffs. The kid has kicked it up a notch to almost 3 PPG! Maybe his stint with the Flames taught him some tricks, or maybe he just likes the playoffs!

    Given what the Flames have for top-6 forwards right now, Baertschi could easily wind up on one of the top two lines next season. Now if only Backlund could pry some of those snake-fangs out of his neck over the summer…

  • beloch

    Hate to be a downer, but the Flames succeeded in getting the 14th overall pick, which is the maximum worst draft pick you can get while still missing the playoffs… Way to go boys. Nobody will remember these last few games that made us feel better for the week, but we will all remember missing the playoffs in 2011, and another middling prospect. Hopefully we can pull a rabbit out of the hat and get another Baertschi as opposed to what a middle round pick usually equates to which is a prayer and a hope.

    The Oilers did get Eberle 22nd, and Ottawa got Karlson 15th. So there is indeed hope. We need elite talent though, not solid role players or 2nd liners. I just pray our scouting dept gets this year right, I think its imperative we grab a steal this year to somehow right the ship… I’d still like to see Iggy and Kipper traded to try and get a few more prospects and picks in the system and start this thing over properly.

    Now to cheer for LA! (this season wouldn’t be half bad if the Nucks bow out in the first round).

  • First Name Unidentified

    I’m very excited that the Canucks will be playing the Kings in round 1. The Kings do have the potential to hurt all the pinky princesses and put a solid dent in ‘Nucks’ playoff run. I believe in Daryll’s capabilities as a playoff coach. Thanks to the Sharks for winning against LA in their last regular season game.

  • beloch

    You know, I notice we had the highest point total of teams not making the playoffs this year. That means we were a couple of bedwettings against edmonton and columbus away from making the playoffs, and then who knows? I wonder if it might be worth another shot with the same cast, try and get younger and cheaper gradually. We can suck in a couple of years, but for now, I say go for it.

  • beloch

    Just listening to the interviews by Butter & Iggy, the winds of Change(awesome song by the Scorpions) will be blowing & it seems for the first time Iggy declared he’s not interested in a rebuild. Wonder if trading Kipper sends that message to him & he opens up the number of teams come next trade deadline he would accept a trade to. Butter also insinuated major player changes are big time necessary for this team to move forward.No hiding on the cusp & mediocrity anymore, King & Ownership have some big public decisions to come forth with. Like what Johnson said in the Herald today, this is going to be one of the biggest summers in the history of this franchise. Put your seatbelts on, this could get a little bumpy.

  • RKD

    I went to the Flames website again to watch the Iggy interview. His comments spoke volumes: “I don’t know if I want to be part of a rebuild.” and “I’d be lying to you if I said I want to be here for a full rebuild.”

    You can’t blame Iggy, he turns 35 on July 1st and his window to win a Stanley Cup keeps shrinking every year the Flames miss the playoffs.

    He and Kipper deserve to win a Stanley Cup. How much longer are these two guys going to keep missing the playoffs?

    What really is a rebuild? The Oilers traded Ryan Smyth got some less than stellar returns sucked for a few more years and have three top forwards in the NHL. The Oilers never moved Horcoff or Hemsky.

    Based on the ridiculous asking price for Rick Nash: a goalie, a first round pick, a prospect and a roster player. There’s no reason to believe Iggy and Kipper won’t net you a first round pick each, a prospect each and a roster player.

    Two first round picks would badly help this franchise. If you don’t want to trade Iggy or Kipper, then with all the free money you have this off-season you need a major overhaul of the team. How many more years does this team keep looking for a #1 center? Time to develop your own players, no more band-aids and recycling of players year after year.

  • RKD

    As an Oiler fan I could not be happier. The Oil could draft first overall, no worse than third. The Flames are a year older, drafting in a poor spot, and have little talent coming up the ranks.
    Looks like the Flames are about three years behind, in an inevitable rebuild!!
    Like I said 15 years ago, the Flames will not match the Oilers cup total in my lifetime!!

    • loudogYYC

      get a goalie, two top-pairing dmen, and 3 bottom six forwards and then you might make the playoffs.

      until then, kevin lowe and tambo are still running your team.

      • the forgotten man

        The Oilers young talent…Hall, Nuge, Eberle, along with this years pick, a brand new state of the art arena equal a bright future in Edmonton.
        The Flames can keep their old team, and their old building!!

        • beloch

          The new arena is years away and the young talent is rapidly approaching free-agency. In the salary-cap era, teams need to capitalize while their talent is still cheap. The Oilers haven’t shown any signs of doing that. Last summer they said this would be their season to rise from the ashes, but it didn’t happen. Will it happen next season?

          Once those kids reach free agency they will be *expensive*, and keeping them will take money the Oilers simply don’t have to spend given how many other parts they still need to build a winning team. My prediction is that they’ll be forced to trade one or more of the kids for picks just so they can tread water while they wait for the magical rise to happen.

          The future of the Oilers is far from certain.

          • Reg Dunlop

            You are correct. The oil’s future is not guaranteed. They may only win 1 or 2 cups rather than 4 in the next decade. The flames, however, are certain to bottom out. Relying on trading washed up Kipper and Iggy. 1 draft pick for each, if you are lucky. Relying on Sven, the Swiss smurf,well good luck with that hahahahah.

            Heres to the start of Oiler domination in the battle of Ab. Book it.

          • Captain Ron

            Your right….Eberle, Hall, Gagner, the Nuge and especially Horc whats his name will all be big time physical threats Sven had better watch out for!


            Your guys are too scary for him. all that talent and still in what….. 28th place overall.

            Woooooooooooooooooooo Oilers Wooooooooooooo

  • RKD

    I’m glad the Flames finished the season on a winning note, sort of…… We would’ve drafted 11th, now we draft 15th. I think that makes a pretty decent difference…. Say goodbye to Kipper. Love the goalie, but if we can get a first round and a roster player for him I’ll be happy.

  • loudogYYC

    Sorry I meant 14th. Unless we get someone like Baertschi I’ll be ticked off though. We might’ve had a shot at someone like Trouba but now most likely not. Anyone see Feaster moving up in the draft this year?

  • the forgotten man

    Flames can’t even screw up losing..should’ve thrown every game since mathematically eliminated from playoffs…this just sums up how inept this organization is from bottom to top.I may have to take up watching NBA again 🙁

    If the Flames players or fans need feel good, then go get a hug from your Mom.

  • Graham

    ‘It was nice to see them come out with a respectable effort in the team’s last game of the year’

    They failed to put in a respectable effort when the games really meant something, so I don’t really care that they ‘did’ when the games meant nothing.