Shanahan Tells the Flames “No Thanks”


The Shanny intrigue ended with a whimper today when Roger Millions reported he has decided to stay on as the NHL’s disciplinarian rather than join the Flames organization.

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We can’t know exactly why Shanahan decided against the move, but it makes me at least raise an eyebrow to see him prefer what is perhaps the league’s most thankless job over moving into a senior management role here in Calgary.

It’s unclear whether the Flames are still actively looking to add a guy like Shanahan to the org or if the opportunity was tailor made for the former superstar specifically. I’ll guess we’ll see.

For now, Ken King remains on top.

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  • Michael

    Shany seemed to have a good relationship with Edwards, but I don’t see Shany as being the type to sign on merely to be a ‘yes’ man to either King or Edwards. Without knowing what the specific role or the proposed reporting structure was, it’s hard to judge his decision.
    Waiting for details on the role to emerge…

  • Colin.S

    Disappointing but not surprising, I don’t see a way that Ken King and his “replacement” could get along in a hockey ops way, until Edwards steps in and simply moves King out of the way, it’s status quo.

  • Colin.S

    Completely making up this possibility, but Mark Messier resigned from the Rangers today.

    I also would not mind Doug Wilson.

    I can’t see either happening, as I firmly believe this is an optics move driven by Bob McKenzie and others suggesting that King is middling in Hockey Operations. I think they just want another puppet in the room… spelling off some unrest at the same time. This new job likely reports to Ken King, and none of Ken Kings daily input will be impacted.

  • BurningSensation

    Am I the only one who thought this whole story was deeply, deeply strange?

    I mean, first, the Flames owners give the all-clear-ahead to Feaster and his crew, but then drop the bomb that they are looking to add a new President and to move Ken King on (which is all good news frankly).

    But then the only two names that come out of the process for hiring a Pres are league cronies Shanahan and Campbell? The first a guy who has never run anything, anywhere, the second, a guy who hasn’t run anything (except interference for Bettman) for almost two decades? What kind of search criteria did Edwards have, ‘previous experience kissing high-level ass preferred’?

    This whole story has just been bizarre.

    • Willi P

      Agreed, so no you are not the only one. If they are going to do this, hockey guy with recent experience running a club only please. I hate Burke but he would be better than either one above.

  • TheRealPoc

    Anything that moved Ken King out of a position of influence with respect to hockey decisions would’ve been a step forward for us. But I’m with Burning Sensation on this one – I don’t know what the hell’s going on here.

    • joey joe joe jr shabadoo

      Edwards can be as involved as he wants… It’s his money and his risk… I’m okay with that. He’s fronting the cash to have that right. I like having an owner that demands to see on ice success.

      King is a different story. He behaves like he owns the team when his sole purpose should be that of a CFO. He should be making sure costs are in line… marketing is effective… etc

  • joey joe joe jr shabadoo

    Hate to say it, but Calgary just is not a prime destination for hockey players or executives.

    Trying to lure a high profile hockey personality, like Shanahan, to a rebuilding team in Western Canada is a tough sell. Especially if it means he has to move from NY (where his family lives). I’m sure Shanahan would prefer to wait for an opportunity to present itself closer to home.

    At the end of the day the Flames would be wise to look closer to their own backyard at people like Bob Nicholson (for example).

    • please cancel acct

      I really like the idea of Bob Nicholson. A few years back I heard a rumor of Bob Nicholson and Steve Yzerman joining the Flames as President and General Manager respectively. Was so disappointed when that didn’t happen. We’d be in so much better a spot now.

    • ChinookArchYYC

      Money and term seems to be a wash, both new Flames are significantly younger and a bit bigger. We also get rid of 2 NTC’s which is a bonus…

      Not an exciting move but a mini step forward I would say.

    • RexLibris

      I think this is a fair trade. Tanguay may still have skill, but he has very little market value, in my opinion. The cap hit is alright, but the term is the killer and at his age.

      So long as Hartley doesn’t try and play Jones for more than 10 minutes a night he should be alright as a depth LW option, and O’Brien isn’t anything spectacular but he’s at least a break-even with Sarich. Arguably a minor improvement.

        • BurningSensation

          Agree with all of the above. Neither Jones nor O’Brien light my fire, but both represent upgrades over the departing players.

          Jones with his modicum of goal scoring, age, and checking abilities is a much better fit for the team as constructed than Tanguay, and O’Brien is at a minimum a facepuncher who can take a semi regular shift – something we can’t say about Sarich.

          I’m at a bit of a loss as to why Colorado considered this deal.

          • BurningSensation

            As we’ve seen in Calgary many times, GMs like to go with who they know and Sakic knows Tanguay. The fact that that was a really long time ago doesn’t seem to matter.

  • SydScout

    A few things bother me about this
    1. If Shanahan wants a GM job in the future, is he protecting his brand and job prospects by not joining the Flames?
    2. Do the Flames really know what structure they want? If not, they’re counting on luck to achieve the right outcome (very few orgs breed success through luck). If there is a clear job description, good. If not, more worry about their capabilities to drive the org, thus team performance, forward.
    3. Shanahan speaks to all senior leaders within hockey orgs in his current job. Did he look at the Flames, compare to 29 other teams, and see us as poorly managed?

    Red flags all over this. On the flip side, perhaps he had a late change of heart and wants to keep his wife, family and mistress happy by staying in TO (assume he is there). Also, good to see more hockey brainpower being sourced to join the org.

  • BurningSensation

    I have to say I am not surprised that Edwards wants King to move over to other Edwards properties – whatever else you may think of King the guy made Edwards a ton of scratch. If he is moving over to run the process for upgrading the Saddledome/new arena, that is definitely a place he could be very sucessful.

    But the timing of this? Weird. Especially when you could have taken a run at Davidson.

    But the real kicker for me is why would you look at Shanahan and Campbell? As a favour to Bettman? Because Bettman recommended them? Aren’t there a dozen GMs, VP’s, etc. who would be on any shortlist for being elevated to the role of President? Seriously, isn’t Joe Nieuwendyk with his Cornell background, Flames connections, and GM experience a better fit than either Shanahan or Campbell?

  • RexLibris

    Not to be a jerk, but Shanahan says he’d rather work with Bettman and remain the NHL disciplinary whipping boy than work next to Ken King and Murray Edwards.


    I was kind of hoping he’d make some video explanations of player trades and free-agent signings if he joined the Flames.

    • RKD

      In terms of salary I think it is even. If Jones bounces back a bit, and O’Brien uses his size, then I don’t see what the problem is. O’Brien was even in +/- last year on a dreadful Colorado team. If nothing else they are significantly younger, and I think at worst case this is sort of a lateral move.

      Tanguay has become a malcontent and is getting up there in age, so good riddance.

      Sarich is old, and spends tons of time in the press box. I actually like him, but getting rid of him is a plus. We all scratched our heads at his resigning last year, so what is the problem?

      • RKD

        yeah this is a total win trade. getting players 5 years younger. A guy who was looking pretty good for 3 consecutive seasons goal wise and a big tough defenseman who will likely play more than sarich did. Also got rid of tanguay who didn’t want to be here anymore

  • Jeff Lebowski

    I was for moving Tanguay if it meant moving up in the draft. Has the roster improved? This deal doesn’t do anything significant for the rebuild.

    Feaster should have got better assets for the rebuild when moving his vets.

    Sarich for O’brien. Meh
    Tanguay for Jones. Terrible.

    • BurningSensation

      A. Yes the roster has improved. Jones is a longer term asset for the team than Tanguay at this point, and while he won’t ever score 30 or win a Selke he represents a useful player to supplement the rebuild. Tanguay at his age, declining skill-set, and poor attitude – didn’t.

      B. Feaster got about as good as you can expect for the vets he moved out.

      – JBO, a 1st, a roster player with promise (Cundari), and a goaltender of unknown ability

      – Iggy – a 1st, two college age prospects with upside and some development time already invested.

      – Tanguay – an average 3rd line winger with speed and 20 goal scoring ability.

      I have to look into Jones’ possession stats to see if there is anything lurking under the surface, but in all three cases I listed I’d say Feaster did just fine.

      Afterall, he was the only GM to get a 1st rnd pick via trade for the upcoming draft, and he managed to get 2 of them.

      • BurningSensation

        “Afterall, he was the only GM to get a 1st rnd pick via trade for the upcoming draft, and he managed to get 2 of them.”

        The Stars got one for Jagr.

        • BurningSensation

          Yeah, it’s seeing things like that and the Erat for Filip Forsberg deal that really leave me wanting and frustrated.

          As I stated before, I don’t think the Iggy deal was bad, the playoffs confirm that.

          I do think more could’ve been had for JBo if we’d eaten salary.

          2 things:

          1) Does going for picks over prospects pay off? For example, if Detroit was going to give up Jarnkrok, why would we not do that?

          2) Not eating salary. What does Jay do with it? I think the time to eat it was in the JBo trade, but we will see what Feaster does with it in the summer.

          IMO, no meaningful picks or prospects would have been gotten for Tanguay, so I’m happy with the deal.

          • BurningSensation

            The Jagr for a first was conditional on the Bruins reaching the finals – whereas the Flames traded Iggy for a 1st without conditions. Jagr WAY outplayed Iggy in the playoffs. I think you have to work pretty hard to see the Iggy return as inferior to the Jagr deal.

            In the case of both the Iggy and JBo deals, I suspect that management was operating under two conditions;

            – the return had to include a 1st in this years draft (sorry Detroit)

            – the Flames were not going to eat cash or salary in the return.

            Feaster managed to move both guys, collect other assets (Agostino, Bera, Cundari, etc.), get 2 first rnd picks, and not hold on to salary or take back a bad contract.

            That’s pretty solid asset management IMO.

          • 1. generally yes. prospects who have tracked well in pro hockey generally do better than new picks coming out of junior at the ages of 22 and up I believe

            2. murray edwards sits on his wallet, which is weird because of how much cash he’s thrown away in the past few years.

        • RexLibris

          And the Blue Jackets under Howson got a conditional one from L.A. in the Carter deal, the condition being Columbus’ choice and they wisely waited until this year, and one from the Rangers in the Nash deal.

          Regier got one in the Pominville trade.

          In all, six first round picks were traded for this year.

          Feaster is one of three to have acquired one this season. The others were acquired by Howson last season.

  • RKD

    Who wants to join the Flames? Nobody, hate to be negative but I think these candidates are being told they don’t have full autonomy which any guy needs to successfully run hockey ops.

    I have a hard time believing Davidson never spoke to Calgary, we also missed out on Bob Nicholson and Steve Yzerman. These are all hockey guys with varying amount of experience, the Flames will suffer in future drafts if they don’t have hockey guys.

  • please cancel acct

    IMO This wacky idea of making Shanahan or Campbell president of the Flames, is a sign of just how little confidence the owners have in management,and rightfully so.

    Flames management has become a three ring circus, and will remain that way until a president is hired that possesses hockey knowledge, and a contract that doesn’t allow Edward’s in his kitchen.