Flames Needs and Wants Heading Into The Draft



As we barrel head-long into the off-season, the 2013 NHL Draft approaches rapidly. Estimations of what your Calgary Flames will do at the draft, in terms of picks, can be guided in terms of what they’ve said publicly on the subject and what they’ve done in the past.

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Based on GM Jay Feaster’s public comments, the Flames have identified their specific needs: size and grit, centers and a physical presence on their blueline. They won’t necessarily try to fill those gaps just at the draft, but those thoughts are in the back of their mind.

We can filter that needs assessment with the draft tendencies/value the club has established under the new regime. Jay Feaster has been at the helm of the Flames through two drafts and has made 12 selections, the last seven at the recommendation of John Weisbrod, who heads all scouting.

The Flames have chosen two goalies, four defensemen and six forwards. By source league, that’s four from the USHL, five from the WHL, one from the QMJHL, one from Finland and one from Quebec prep school. There’s some evidence of the club varying its sources a bit and trying not to select too many of the same “type” of player.

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Based on interviews and conversations with Flames management and scouts, the team values hockey sense the most, followed by character, skill and skating. In other words, if you think the game really well – or the scouts say you do – you’re high on the Flames scouting list.


I’ve mentioned Ottawa 67s pivot Sean Monahan recently. He’s reasonably big, and arguably he’s the best of the non “Big 6” (Jones, MacKinnon, Drouin, Lindolm, Barkov and Nichushkin). He was also a very strong player on a lousy team and would have been a very high pick even in the 2012 draft had he been eligible.

But don’t sleep on Edmonton Oil Kings Curtis Lazar, the London Knights Bo Horvat or Regina’s Morgan Klimchuk. Horvat in particular has been a strong player on a great London Knights, and one that drives the club’s offense. Lazar isn’t as crucial to Edmonton’s success, but has one of the best, most accurate shots in this draft class.


I will continue to tout Ryan Hartman of the Plymouth Whalers until the draft, as I think he’s great.

Andre Burakowsky of Malmo is a bit less gritty, but has arguably more skill. Corey Pronman (of the vaunted Hockey Prospectus) quoted a source in his analysis who pegged Burakowsky’s “work ethic as equal to his skill level.” That’s a good sign. Swedish forward Jacob de la Rose, of Leksand IF, is also said to be excellent as a physical, two-way player, but projects more as a second rounder.

Another name to keep in mind is Adam Erne out of the Quebec Remparts. The Flames have seen quite a bit of him (via scouting Ryan Culkin), and he’s said to be big, fast and physically strong. He’ll be available in the mid-to-late first round.

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This is where this first round shines. There are a lot of big, physical defenders available in this year’s draft.

Rasmus Ristolainen is arguably the best. He’s Finnish and has played in the SM-Liiga all season against grown-ass men, as a 17-year-old, and done quite well. Another high-level defender is Darnell Nurse, of the OHL’s Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds. He’s big, physical and is Donovan McNabb’s nephew. And both of his parents are athletes, too. Nurse is roundly considered the best defender available after Seth Jones.

Outside of those two, standouts include London’s huge Nikita Zadorov, Kelowna’s Madison Bowey, Everett’s Mirco Mueller and a pair of USHL blueliners – Steven Santini of the U.S. National Development Team and Ian McCoshen of the Waterloo Blackhawks. Both players are committed to join Johnny Gaudreau and Bill Arnold at Boston College for the 2013-14 season, so they are no doubt on the Flames radar.


I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention two key things about high school kids.

First, there’s a few decent lowly-ranked, long-term project type high school prospects out of Minnesota that stand out in the Central Scouting rankings. Jacob Jackson had 56 points in 25 games with Tartan High School, while Zach Glienke of Egan High School had 60 points in 25 games, and is 6’3” and 190 pounds. Either could be worth a shot in the seventh round.

Second, the best high school kids in the draft are supposedly Tommy Vannelli out of Minnetona High School in Minnesota – he’s a decently big defenseman – and Connor Hurley out of Edina High School, also in Minnesota, who’s a center. Vannelli’s committed to the University of Minnesota, but may play a year with the UHSL’s Tri-City Storm before he heads to college. Hurley’s joining the Muskegon Lumberjacks of the USHL next year and then heading to Notre Dame.

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  • seve927

    Santini was originally ranked down in the mid second round, but the latest from ISS had him at 17. I’d use the St. Louis pick on him if he’s available. He’s as close to a sure thing NHLer as there is IMO. The last pick will likely be used in a trade, is my guess. Otherwise a Hartman, Erne, or Compher would be a pretty sound pick.

        • McRib

          Ryan Hartman had a good playoffs teams are so high on him right now… Some people have him as high as 12th. Also I have never seen Adam Erne below 20th anywhere except on ISS, Red Line Report has him 10th and JT Compher had a great U18s for the USA, teams always reach for guys who perform well in that tournament. Mark Scheifele was a 15-20 pick until the U18s and he went 7th.

          Not a chance in hell we get Hartman or Erne with that third pick we will be lucky to get them with our second pick. Compher is doubtful, as Chicago is taking the hometown kid if he is there and Pittsburghs pick is more likely to end up at 30th than Chicago’s is as it stands.

          Considering Hartley’s relationship with Patrick Roy “they talk to each other once a week as Hartley was his mentor coaching”, I think Erne is a basic lock to be our St. Louis pick. I also don’t see very much trading picks up or down this draft is waaaayyyy to strong to be throwing away picks to move up or down a spot or two. I agree with your guys but just with the second pick not the third, lol.

          • seve927

            I want Santini enough to risk losing any of the other guys. Other guys I like that I’ve seen rated low – Pulock, Morrissey and Petan in that order. If none of those are available, I’d definitely consider trading that pick (the Burmistrov situation comes to mind).

          • McRib

            Ryan Pulock is all over the board he is someone that could fall to us, also Petan could be availble at 30. I like Santini as well but there are soooo many solid defenders in that third pick range (Hagg, Santini, Bowey, Vannelli, Theodore, McCoshen, Morin, Mueller, etc). and I just think our second pick is high enough to catch someone falling like Morrissey or secure a Erne. You wan’t to secure Santini I wan’t scure Erne maybe we get them both! Haha. it looks like Baalzamon would agree as well…

            It sucks we gave up that second rounder to Montreal because that is basically a guy who would be a first rounder any other year. All of these defenders are not going to go in the first, let alone a guy like Connor Hurley who is being buried by Major Junior, USNTDP guys.

          • seve927

            Santini is just the only guy that really screams NHLer to me. I have complete confidence in him, other guys are just good prospects, 50/50 type guys (no to Morin).

          • BurningSensation

            Ryan Pulock is someone I think the Flames could definitely use, but he could go literally anywhere from just inside the top 10 to the end of the first.

            As for that 2nd rnder we gave to Montreal, I won’t miss it. The Bourque+2nd+fringe prospect for Cammalleri and Ramo (and significant $ savings) has worked out just fine IMO.

          • BurningSensation

            I think Cervenka is probably a legit top 6 NHL fwd (not a center though – that enough is perfectly clear now), but he had too many obstacles to prove it in the shortened season;

            – blood clot thing
            – conditioning
            – Hartley
            – language/acclimation

            I though he looked like a much better player over the course of the 2nd half than he did in the first.

            That all said, I’m not mourning his departure.

            If Ramo proves to be even a slightly below average starting NHL goaltender (something we didn’t get this year), I will be pleased. As long as he doesn’t crap the bed outright, he’s an asset.

      • Truculence

        Hartman and Compher will moste definately be available for our 21st or 22nd pick, unless Feaster the whiz snaps up one of them with our sixth. Hartman has a very good chance of falling into the second round, as well.

        I would love to see (6)Monahan, (St. Louis)Erne or Mantha, and (pitt pick) Bowey or Morin.

        • McRib

          Mantha is another all over the board pick along like Pulock. He scored a ton this season and he has a big frame, but some say that is all he is capable of doing. He scares the crap out of most, if he is not scoring he’s not that effective. Slow first step, not a lot of compete he is a lot of peoples first choice for a bust this year. If he falls to the Flames third pick I would roll the dice on him, but would take Erne all day with that second, he just project’s better at the next level. Curtis Lazar is also a bazaar person to predict. I’d take Pulock with the second wait it out on the other two.

          As for Hartman…. Everyone is in love love looooovvvveeeee with him I just don’t see him going past the 15-20 range. He’s one of those guys that is every teams second choice. The way he plays the game, despite his size you just know he is a player, shows up every night, great compete, honestly I would be elated to get him with the third but its very doubtful, imho. If Hartman didn’t play on the USA World Junior Team we would have gotten him, but everyone saw how good he was there at the top level. He’s everyone “Flying under the radar pick”, so to me he aint flying under the radar.

  • McRib

    Nice article your bang on, I think the first two picks should be forwards and the third should be a defender, considering the best talent available in each picks range.

    Also Nikita Zadorov has done nothing in the Memorial Cup for me, but the flames don’t draft Russians anyway. How is this kid so highly regarded?? Minus a couple inches and give me Bowey anyday!!!

    1 – Monahan, Lindholm 2 – Erne, Hartman, Horvat, Lazar, JT Compher 3 – Bowey, Vannelli, Theodore, McCoshen

    • BurningSensation

      re: Zadorov – that may be so, but I have a feeling some team will step up and pick him fairly early based on day dreams of him being the next Chara. Not to say I don’t like him, I do, but he’s a project.

      Starting to come around on Lazar, I sometimes wonder about how high his offensive ceiling will be, but he’ll probably be gone by the time Calgary picks at 22.

      Still not sure bewtween Lindholm and Monahan. Without seeing both of them play, it’s just guess work, but I’ll be pleased with either of them.

      Don’t get too excited about Wotherspoon yet. He’s promising, I agree, but rushing D-men into the NHL is even worse than rushing forwards.

      All-in-all, I’m stoked for this draft. I’m going to go with the assumption that the Flames, choosing picks over prospects at the deadline, must have their eyes on several players that they strongly believe will be NHL’ers and still available when they pick.

      • McRib

        Oh, I know every year a big defenseman goes top 15 because “he could turn into the next Chara”. Hahah. Honestly its like clockwork one every year since 2004, Boris Valabik, Sasha Pokulok, Ty Wishart, Keaton Ellerby, Tyler Myers, Jared Cowen, Erik Gudbranson, Jamie Oleksiak, Hampus Lindholm… And still only one Chara, Lol. Considering Zadorov is Russian and will bolt at the hint of adversity… Not for me, Haha.

        You know who Curtis Lazar reminds me off…. Ryan O’Reilly!!! Haha. He is a toolsy second line centre that puts up 65 points every season, I think he could still be around at 22, he is all over the board. People have the same concern you do with undefined scoring, would like him at 22. P>

  • seve927

    My board looks something like this

    6th: Lindholm

    21/22/whatever: Adam Erne

    29/30/whatever: Steve Santini

    67th: Linus Arnesson (biggish mobile swedish defender)

    97th: Taylor Cammarata (if he’s still there).

    I could see the Flames going Cammarata in round 3, actually. Not sure if Santini will be around for the Pitt pick, but I think the Flames likely take him if he is. Imagine a pair of Sieloff and Santini (or even Wotherspoon and Santini, though that’s not quite as physically terrifying).

    • McRib

      Speaking of Wotherspoon…. WOW, he has looked good this playoff run and Mem Cup. He has rock solid coverage and I think he has more offense to give if a team ever lets him go with it. IMO, he has a decent chance to make the Flames out of camp. I liked him in the World Juniors but he is even better now.

  • Parallex

    I’m kind of wondering if the Flames might end up getting all Swedes in the first round With Lindholm, Burakowsky, and Hagg all falling roughly in line with the Flames three picks.

    My own board would see the Flames grabbing Barkov (or Lindholm should he not be there) and I’d really like to see the Flames grab Samual Morin with one of their late 1sts… tantalizing upside given his size, and Kerby Rychel with the other late first. For the Third round I’d take a flyer on Cammarata.

    Couple of other names… Andrew Copp & Mark Yanis look like decent 7th round grabs. They’re both 18yo NCAA Freshmen who put up decent numbers.

    • McRib

      Haggs stock has really fallen since Connor McDavid burned the crap out of him at the U18s, can you blame him? Haha. I could see him being around for our third pick. Honestly as Ryan said there are A LOT of good defenders to choose from in our third picks range… Hagg, Santini, Bowey, Vannelli, Theodore, McCoshen, Morin and Mueller. I don’t understand how Theodore is so low on peoples lists after a 50 points season that guy has Mike Green written all over him. Vannelli and Bowey are my favorites, Red Line Report has Vannelli 26th and is someone most NHL teams seem to like more than the ISSs of the world.

  • seve927

    another thing I was thinking would be to package the St. Louis and Pitt picks as high as they’ll go, then package that pick with another asset to gain another high pick (let’s say Buffalo’s 8th for the sake of insanity) and take Nurse or Ristolainen. A big physical defender IN ADDITION to the center taken at 6th would be a big help.

    Maybe one too many steps, and probably not possible (what do the Flames have that could turn a ~12/15th pick into an ~8th pick?). I just like the idea of getting Lindholm + Nurse out of this draft.

    Of course, we could always just hope for Aaron Ekblad next year…

  • BurningSensation


    Shea Theodore is someone who should definitely be on our radar late in the 1st. Speedy puck moving D-men are the new ‘must-have’ in the NHL.

    But then i wonder, might it not be possible for us to get the actual Mike Green out of Washington instead of trying to draft the ‘next’ Mike Green? Washington has some upcoming cap issues (unless I’m mistaken), and Green has had two bad years running injuries wise that have depressed his stats. Given his big ticket, there might be a deal the Flames can make to give Washington future picks/cap-relief in exchange for the puck-rushing Green.

    Adding Green to the Flames D-corps without a significant subtraction would help all our D-men slot into better places on the roster.

  • Parallex

    This is why we do not package our 1st’s to move 2-3 spots. Lets see what falls to 6th. Now it seems the Oilers want Monohan real bad, Lindholm is more of a Gagner type of player they already have. You have to wonder if Lindholm & Monohan fall to 6th, maybe Oilers would give us their 2nd to swap places & assure them of the player the really want. Then Feasty takes Lindholm 7th like he probably would have taken 6th anyway & gains that extra 2nd. I cant wait for this freaking draft to unfold, the drama starts after the Colorado pick.

      • SmellOfVictory

        What do you base that comment on? He looks similar to me… Maybe an inch or two bigger. But all reports say he isn’t the quickest, but is shifty, and feisty along the boards/in tight and has great hands. Not the greatest shot.

        Ganger isn’t the best comparison you could find, but far from “nothing like”. Unless you see some scouting reports I haven’t seen.

          • Rockmorton65

            Well, I have heard the comparison in the type of skill versus a premiere shutdown style type of game Monohan plays. Both have #1 line C ceilings, its just Lindholms type of game is redundant on the Oilers versus what Monohan would bring to their lineup. That may be worth a 2nd to ensure they get their player. That was my point, If Oilers were picking 6th & Monohan & Lindholm were avail, who do you think they would pick/covet? With the Flames, either/or is quite fine with us.

          • Rockmorton65

            Followed this a ton and based on reading a million articles the net net I have come to is Lindholm and Monahan are both projected as solid #1 centers …. but Lindholm has more upside and could turn out to be above average #1 center ….. same floors and more ceiling for Lindholm.

          • RexLibris

            Lindholm and Gagner are not really comparable in terms of strengths and weaknesses.

            Lindholm is a stronger two-way player at this stage of his development than Gagner was at the same age. This may or may not translate to a higher defensive ceiling. He is also considered an above-average skater whereas Gagner’s own father told him that while he would never be a jackrabbit he could work to become a really fast turtle.

            The Oilers would probably take one or the other (being Monahan) and the rhetoric suggests Monahan is the favourite behind Barkov. That being said, the rhetoric 48 hours before the draft last June was that it was Murray all the way.

            For my money, if I’m MacTavish, I listen carefully to what Frank Musil has to say about Lindholm, or offer up the pick to Philadelphia for Couturier.

  • BurningSensation

    Lindholm should be the target. But it sounds like Nichuskin will go in the top 5 now, which means if a team really likes Lindholm in the top 5, there’s a greater chance that Barkov could fall to us. Either way, picking from Barkov, Lindholm, and Nichuskin. I really like the idea of Burakowsky with our second pick, Adam Erne is fine there too. Even someone like Hagg I wouldn’t mind. I think Hartman shouldn’t be looked at until our last pick but I’m sure some team will like him enough to take him early teens of the first round. If Hagg is available with our third we should take him. I also like McCoshen as well. I don’t care where the picks are from as long as we don’t go off the board.

  • T&A4Flames

    I’m a big fan of Bowey. I haven’t read many bad things about him, in fact, maybe none. He seems to have improved each year as well.

    I was high on Pulock but the fact that he is all over the place and some of the reports on him have me concerned. He seems somewhat like a Phaneuf but not as big. He has a big but wild shot and that is his biggest asset I’ve read.

    Santini would be a great late 1st early 2nd rnd pick. His O seems to be lacking but that could come.

    I’m not opposed to trading down our PIT pick for a couple of early 2nds. I think we could pick up a couple of really good D men. I also really like Justin Bailey for adding to our RW depth. Good 2nd rnd’r IMO, if Hartman is gone.

  • _DBG_

    After watching some videos between the two I gotta say, Lindholm looks like he has much more upside as number one center over Monahan, who looks more like a really good number two defensive center that can score a bit. So I really hope the flames take Lindholm as a player to build around.

    With are second pick I’d hope Ryan Pulock is around but I’d be fine with Lazar or Pavel Buchnevich.

    Third pick hopefully either Mirco Mueller or JT Compher.

  • McRib

    Here goes nothing, my final list of the 3 players the flames should take in NJ… Only reason I chose Monahan over Linholm is for some reason I think Lindholm goes to Nashville and I don’t think the Flames would ever take a Russian. If guys like Pulock/Lazar/Morrissey/Ristolainen fall that’s another story.

    1) Sean Monahan 2) Adam Erne 3) Madison Bowey

  • Matty Franchise Jr

    How many of our draft picks will make (or should I say “should make”) the team next year? I figure probably only the guy we pick at #6. With that pick we should pick for the teams most urgent CURRENT need: Centre.

    With all other picks, I think we should draft the best player available, regardless of position (except G – waste of a draft pick in my opinion). By the time they are ready to play in the NHL, our needs could very well have changed.

    • T&A4Flames

      Honestly, I hope none are on the team next year. The only exception may be Barkov if he were to fall to us. Still, he has to complete his mandatory military service (1yr) before that I would assume. So even he is unlikely. They need to develop properly. Rushing them to the NHL doesn’t usually help.

  • T&A4Flames

    I am really hoping Lindholme slides to us. I would take him over any center not named Mckinnon in this draft. Our next 2 picks will be huge. If we pick 2 future quality NHLers, that would be such a great boost. If neither develop, it will be beyond terrible considering what we gave up for those 2 picks. The scouts have a ton of pressure on them this year.

    • T&A4Flames

      In our situation, we can’t trade a potential impact player for what appears to be a 3rd liner. And, a guy already asking to be traded makes one wonder.

      • Rockmorton65

        He could be another Turris. Seems to be a similar deal. Highly regarded prospect who is under performing, wanting to play where he can be used properly. Might be worth inquiring about, but not with the StL pick. I like the thinking that uses our two later firsts to pick up young players a little further in their development. Teams with cap/FA issues may be open to picking up a first in this draft.

          • Rockmorton65

            I think it would make sense if the player we acquire has already shown potential. I’m not saying Burmistrov is that player, but making a move like that could take some of the risk out of the equation.

    • T&A4Flames

      I don’t think it would cost you that much for Burmistrov.

      But I do like the idea of going for him! A 21 year old semi seasoned prospect would fit perfectly into the rebuild (assuming he isn’t a complete bust, which he might be) But I’d rather trade away one of our vets and keep our 1st rounders (hopefully using them together to trade up somehow).

      • T&A4Flames

        I agree. Considering that its now public that he wants out. Someone also said that WNP would likely prefer roster players to picks. Maybe they would take Stajan and Butler for Burmistrov and a 2nd. We could also add a prospect like Byron or something.

        • RexLibris

          You are on smack if you think us getting rid of our absolute garbage will net us burmistrov. There is no way they would do that. Remember there are 28 other teams to help drive up his price regardless of what he tells anyone…

        • RexLibris

          Buffalo seem to really like Barkov or Nichushkin. If either fell to us at 6th, would you take the #8 & 16 picks for our 6th pick. That would be awful tempting.

  • please cancel acct

    For our second pick.Erne/Compher/Horvat/Hartman/Wennburg.I also think those first four will be gone by21-22,and that we’ll need to settle for Wennberg.

    third pick Santini/Vanelli/Klimchuk Bowie

  • RedMan

    I don’t know where elseto put this, so i guess it’s here.

    I am sure happy for and proud of Jarome…

    I really hope he wins a cup In Pitts.

    Gos bless him.

  • Jeff Lebowski

    I’d like to see skill, size, skating. A right shooting D (compliment Brodie down the road)right shooting centre (we have a lot of skilled left shooting LW).

    So I hope Calgary lands:
    I’d be happy with Rychel or Hartmann too.

    As Gillis noted, the league is shifting to a more physical style, while still demanding ability. A guy like the Kings Jake Muzzin is the prototypical D men I’d like to see obtained by the Flames.

  • Franko J

    Going into the draft this is who I think the Flames should target (as it stands right now):



















    Del la Rose















    Any of these players I would like to see in a Flames uniform in the future.

  • cunning_linguist

    Assuming the big 4 are taken (Mac/Drouin/Jones/Barkov) by the time 6th rolls around, we MUST take Monahan. The Flames finally have the opportunity to get a blue chip, prototypical number 1 center. Something we as an organization haven’t had since Niewendyk. My biggest nightmare is that a Sven or JG develops into a star winger and the Flames spend a decade trying to acquire a number 1 center. No knock on Lindholm, who has a higher ceiling than Monahan, but if we project our top line to include the smaller wingers we seem to love drafting, then we need to give them some size and range up the middle. If the Iginla era taught us anything, it’s that centers like Monahan are nearly impossible to come by without the draft.

    • First Name Unidentified

      Agree with you that it’s that size factor that sort of sways me to Monahan over Lindholm, but it’s a tough one to predict.

      I would love Zykov and Hartman with our 2nd and 3rd first rounders.

      Lots of compete, good skaters, they play physical, can play a 2-way game and they can score and Zykov is already 210 lbs.

      Erne, I think, will be gone by 22.

      Erne and Gauthier, btw, are 2 more guys that seem to have very different scouting reports depending on who you read.

      • icedawg_42

        I always cringe when I hear “skating needs work”, which I’ve heard about Monahan. Personally I’d rather give up the 4 inches in height for the uber high-end work ethic Lindholm reportedly has.

        • piscera.infada

          I hear you, but my impression from everything I’ve read on him is “average NHL skater.” Which means he’s not slow, just not above the pack. But his size, compete, work ethic, hockey IQ, character, 2 way game, faceoff ability and ability to make those around him better (which I LOVE to hear) should mitigate that. It’s not like he’s a poor skater.

          I really don’t know. To truly judge you need to see these guys live several times, test them physically, get behind the scenes assessments from those close to them on a regular/daily basis, etc.

          Lindholm is ranked higher in every list I’ve seen, so maybe that’s all there is to say. Yet, it’s funny, you read the reports and Monahan’s always seem more glowing than Lindholm’s. In THN a scout says Monahan has 1st line potential and lindhol only 2ns line potential, yet Lindholm is ranked higher.

          I’m torn. And confused.

          • RexLibris

            It is a tough place to be in, facing the prospect of your team making a decision between two very good prospects and worrying over making the wrong choice.

            That being said, from my perspective, Flames fans have a pretty good spring/summer ahead of them if this is the major concern right now.

            As an Oilers’ fan, I’d be happy with either Monahan or Lindholm and can’t really say that I clearly prefer one over the other. It’d make for one heck of a good prologue to a new BoA if we included a draft-debate into the mix.

        • SmellOfVictory

          “I’d rather give up the 4 inches in height”

          It’s actually more like 2 inches, and Lindholm actually out-weighs Monahan at present by about 6 pounds.


          “In THN a scout says Monahan has 1st line potential and lindhol only 2ns line potential, yet Lindholm is ranked higher”

          Where is this? I haven’t seen that. Until recently THN ranked Lindholm ahead of Monahan. The switch happened for seemingly no reason at all at a completely random point of the season IIRC.


          The ONLY concern about Lindholm for me is Calle Jarnkrok–was the Redwings prospect carrying the mail? Given how fanastic Lindholm looked at the WJC, I’m willing to believe that he helped Jarnkrok at least as much as Jarnkrok helped him.

          As for Monahan, it’s all about the skating. When people try to make up a comparison for Monahan, it’s always a player (Bergeron, Toews) who is actually more like Lindholm. It’s understandible how difficult it is to find a comparison for Monahan. All the players in the NHL I can think of with similar skillsets are better skaters, and they’re often smaller too.

          For me, the Monahan comparison has to be someone like Backes or Hanzal. That makes me wonder what Monahan’s offensive ceiling actually is.

          The caveat, though, is that Monahan really hasn’t grown into his frame yet. I wonder if, when he does, his skating will improve by virtue of him actually having proportional muscle to his height. Because right now, he’s out-weighed by a player two inches shorter than him (Lindholm).

          • Jeff Lebowski

            Backers is a phenomenal skater. Monahan is not yet (according to reports) Will he? I think he can get marginally better.

            I think the comparison is Couturier. I’m personally not impressed by this. Calgary’s top pick should be about production.

            Defensive prowess can be obtained other ways.

            Remember Langkow? Good player no doubt, but nobody wanted him as a number 1 here. Remember Sutter’s three 2’s quote?

            It’s really hard to obtain offensive talent. Cheap, young, offensive talent is what Calgary does not have much of.

            Monahan could be, but I don’t think blue chip when I read about him. I think Couturier.

            Lindholm v Monahan is really tough. I’d just ask Calgary’s scouts, who is more naturally skilled?

            I mean how do the lists compare player v player in determining ranking? Is it merely offensive ceiling? How does one rank a defensive hitter over a smaller offensive guy then? Do paper physical attributes tip the scales ie Monahan is 2 inches taller so he gets the nod over Lindholm? I’m curios how they decide on rankings. Especially after the top 5.

          • Jeff Lebowski

            Yes, they have Lindholm ahead of Monahan. Can’t recall the exact quotes, but it’s something like “probably only be a 2nd line center” for Lindholm and “1st line center” for Monahan. Unless I’m crossing over scouting reports, but I don’t think so.

          • Jeff Lebowski

            Monahan – I’ve seenhim as heavy as 185lbs, but his fram sugegst he will definitely be bigger than Lindholm.

            As for a comparison – Couture, maybe?

      • piscera.infada

        As far as Lindholm-Monahan, the difference seems largely negligible in my eyes.

        Monahan: 6’2″ 170 lbs.
        Lindholm: 6’0″ 192 lbs.
        (Both figures from Hockey’s Future)

        Honestly, I’m happy with either. I just think at this point in the Flames rebuild you want the guy with the higher offensive ceiling. The Flames have been a defense first team for two long, and while I agree that a defensive aspect is hugely important, I just want the Flames to realize that putting the puck in the net is the way the league is going – especially if we are going to be playing in front of a young d-corps.

        In everything I’ve read defensive ceiling is pretty similar between the two, size is pretty similar between the two, Lindholm is the better skater, Lindholm projects as a better offensive player.

        So I take Lindholm if he’s available. But I’m not going to shed a tear if it’s Monahan. I really like the guy – and seeing him in Edmonton is something I would hate.

  • First Name Unidentified


    can you please do a profile on Freddy Gauthier?

    I am absolutely infatuated with this kid from whatever i’ve heard/read about him so far. He is the real deal when it comes to big, 2-way centres.

    However, I doubt that he will be available at 21 or 22. If he is, we HAVE to draft him.

    • First Name Unidentified

      He has a good game for sure but there are questions about how his offense will translate to the NHL. I say we do a profile on Burakowsky. Seen him as high as 12 to as low as 34 or something like that. Also it sounds like we’ll be picking 21 if Detroit can win their next game.

    • Parallex

      Gauthier is the guy that I think the Flames need to stay far far away from.

      He smells like Nemisz to me. People are focusing way to much on the size and aren’t bothering to ask why this guy with such a height and weight advantage on his peers couldn’t do better then 6th on his team in scoring. YMMV but a guy with the size of a large man, playing against boys, on a potent team ought to be dominating not putting up just decent stats. If this really is the deepest draft since 2003 then I think Gauthier is the 2013 Hugh Jessiman.

      • Truculence

        Maybe because it was his rookie year, and he was only 17? You have to wait for the draft +1 year to get a better idea of most of these guys after the top 10.

        That being said, the prospect reports are all over the place. REdline scouts and the Hockey Writers absolutely love the guy and his potential. Corey Pronman and others have their doubts. I guess all we can do is wait and see.

        Would be a great haul for us with the Pitt pick, imo.

  • icedawg_42

    Tough to say who would be the better pick at 6 between Lindholm and Monahan (for me it HAS to be one of those two, assuming Barkov is gone by then, which he will be) Both are big kids, skilled, centers, supposedly hockey IQ is through the roof. I’d be happy with either, but watching highlights etc, I lean just a tad towards Lindholm.

    that said, completely carrying a crap team also tips the scales in Monahan’s favor. Looking forward to Kent’s profiles on both (hint hint)

    For the record, whichever one the Flames get, it p*sses me off that the cOilers will likely grab the other.

  • Jeff Lebowski

    @ Cunning Linguist.

    Although I have posted about this before and although there is clearly no consensus among fans about who should be taken between Monahan and Lindholm, I agree with your reason for Monahan completely. If we can’t move up and get Barkov then we have to take the center with size. based on his weight and age, Monahan clearly has room to grow.

    One thing that is confusing is the player comparisons I am hearing. Some have compared Lindholm to Sam Gagner, some to Bergeron. Both players seem really tough to acurately project but if Monahan can improve his skating???

    Could be a really tough choice at six. Do we pass on Zetterburg and end up with a Hanzal. Or do we pass up a Bergeron and end up with a Gagner. I can see this going wrong no matter who we pick.

    That said:

    Cal 1st + an offensive winger (we have enough of them) – maybe Hudler or Tanguay to Nashville so that we can ensure we get Barkov. Guy has Kopitar written all over him. A steep price to pay but Barkov could be the rock that this team can be built around.

  • everton fc

    Nurse would be a good pick, though he needs to learn to scrap a little better, and put on some muscle and weight.

    I also have liked Eric Roy of Brandon for some time. He’s big, and could be a sleeper. 6’3″, 190 lbs already. Can score. Can play physical. I like him a lot.

    Speelers: Another little scrapper, a forward who could be a sleeper 3rd/4th liner, is Jerome Verrier. In fact, he’d be a good pick up for the Oilers. Maybe! I think he has the potential to be another Derek Dorsett, whom I’ve always liked (how do we pry him from the Rangers?! I actually think he’s better than Prust)Another, similar player from the QMJHL – Adam Chapman of Gatineau. Austin Carrol out of Victoria/WHL is another guy who could add grit to the Flames. Zach Pochiro with Prince George is another fiesty guy I think has potential, but I’m not sure he’s draft eligible.

    Justin Hickman of Seattle’s another possible sleeper with grit. I’m talking 3rd/4th line guys for the future. Perhaps Verrier’s a bit better than that, but probably a 3rd liner, “max”.

    • Parallex

      Given the pedigree and the reportably high skill level I would guess that he goes in the second round. I think that’s where folk have him pegged to go anyways. First round talent in a third round body split the difference.

      If he’s there I think the Flames should strongly consider taking him. I guess the third round is my small guy flyer round given that I’d also take Cammarata in that round.