FN Weekend Open Thread – Who leads the Flames in scoring next year?

 

 

This was never much of a question when Jarome Iginla was around. With him gone and the team rebuilding, however, it might be the hardest prediction to make about the Flames this year. Aside from "will the Flames goaltending be any good?" of course.

Here are the candidates

Mike Cammlalleri – no one on the roster has more career points than Cammy and he is the only guy to score more than 60 points in a season. He has also been trending downwards the last few years and is being actively shopped by the club as we speak. There’s next to no chance he’s still with the Flames after the trade deadline.

Curtis Glencross – His career high is 48 points (albeit in 67 games) but Glencross is a good bet to soak up a lot of primary minutes this season on the PP and at even strength. He has spent a lot of time playing supporting roles during his NHL career, but this year he’s lock to play a ton. Probably the odds-on favorite to lead the way with 50-60 points.

Jiri Hudler – He was on pace for a 52 point season last year, though that had a lot to do with a red hot start that eventually fizzled. Hudler has scored over 50 before with Red Wings and can dazzle with his hands and vision. He can also disappear for long stretches and didn’t look particularly jazzed to be in Calgary when management pulled the plug and began the rebuild last season. 

Mikael Backlund – Likely 40-45 point guy over a full season, Backlund will nevertheless get a lot of ice time given the Flames center situation and may actually spend more than two minutes on the powerplay per game for the first time in his career. If he can stay healthy for a change, he has an outside shot.

Lee Stempniak – One of the Flames most consistent performers in 2012-13, Stempniak was second behind Backlund in terms of possession and tied for first on the team in points with 32 in 47 games (a 56 point pace). Stempniak is also in a contract season and will be highly motivated to put together a strong year. Behind Glencross, he’s probably the best bet to lead the charge, assuming he’s with the team after the deadline that is.

Sven Baertschi – The Flames rookie has all the tools to be a 60+ point getter in the league, but it’s impossible to know if he’ll take that kind of step this year, particularly given the lackluster supoorting cast. We also don’t know where Sven will land in the rotation – top 6? Bottom 6? Second PP? His role and his degree of development will determine his output.

– Dennis Wideman – Yes, this could actually happen. Wideman will probably lead the blueline in ice time and he’ll get a ton of PP time as well. If one or two guys get injured up front and/or if a few of the vets get traded, this could be the type of season where a 47-point effort by a blueliner leads the club in scoring.

Matt Stajan – This could actually happen as well, and frankly it would be a great thing for the team. If Stajan sticks in the top-6 and returns to 50-60 point form, Calgary will be able to flip him for a nice return at the deadline, which was an unthinkable scenario at this time last year.

– David Jones – a bit of a long shot, Jones career best season of 27-goals and 45-points is within range of what it will take to be in the running, though he’ll have to usurp at least one of Hudler, Stempniak, Cammalleri and Glencross to get enough ice time to be in the mix. That said, Jones probably won’t be moved at trade deadline, so might win the race almost by default if Feaster clears the deck again.

So who will it be? Leave your pick and your point total estimate in the comments.

  • RKD

    Cammy is injury prone and not a 39 goal scorer but more like a guy who scored 39 goals once. If he wants to get back to that production, he’s going to have to shoot like there’s no tomorrow. He hasn’t played a full season since the ’08-09 campaign.

    I would love if Sven Baertschi could hit 60 points, but they would have to play him top 3 minutes. I think I’m going to have to go with Glencross. Even though he’s 30 he seems to be a late bloomer but getting better with age. Seems unlikely but I’d love to see him score like a Patrick Sharp. Have a couple of 30 goal seasons as a 30 and 31 year old.

  • please cancel acct

    My vote goes to Cammy Iguess.

    Wouldnt mind seeing him resigned to an affordable 2-3 year deal at around 3.75-4 mill. Of course depending on what kinds of offers we get for him. If a low seed offers us a first or if we can get a really good prospect or young player then of course trade him.

    However if the best offer is a 2 nd round and change then i say keep him. Skilled vets like Cammy and Glencross will give our young players mentorship as well as better skill development.

    An absence of skilled and experienced players to play with may have a negative affect on the development of our young players.

  • McRib

    Considering if we played a full 82 game season last year Mike Cammalleri would have had 59 points, Lee Stempniak 55 points, Jiri Hudler 52 points, Curtis Glencross 53 points, Mikael Backlund 41 points and Dennis Wideman 39 points.

    For me thats where our top five or six scorers will need to be next season to even be mediocre. I agree with RexLibris and think we will be hard pressed to have someone break 60 points, but we could have easily have 5 or 6 guys break 45 points which is the major difference between the Flames and Oilers rebuilds.

    When in 2010-2011, 20 year old rookie Jordan Eberle led Edmonton with 43 points, although the Flames don’t have any top end first line talent. We have a couple serviceable second caliber lines something the Oilers didn’t have those last overall seasons.

    If Baertschi, Brodie and Backlund emerge and we get regularly scoring from veterans Cammalleri, Stempniak, Hudler, Glencross, I think we have an adequate defense and enough solid goaltending chips competing for a job to think we will at least be competitive. Lee Stempniak & Mike Cammalleri have been lights out during contract years in the past and unless Backlund & Baertschi step up and take it away those two will lead our team in scoring.

    If we don’t get regular scoring by committee then lets just get ready to welcome Sam Reinhart or Michael Nylander to Calgary.

      • McRib

        Yikes, That was an oversight!!! Its interesting the Top Two prospects (Reinhart, Nylander) for the 2014 NHL Draft’s fathers both played for the Flames maybe the hockey gods intend for us to tank this year… Not a bad thing. Also a big fan of Jake Virtanen’s game who would just need to change dressing rooms in the Saddledome.

  • Looks like Monahan and Poirier both scored at the national junior team camp today. Against actual prospects that aren’t just Flames plugs. Didn’t see the goals but that definitely gives the two guys a boost.

    Monahan, Poirier, Matt Finn, and Connor McDavid (on a penalty shot). We can only hope the Flames hit a patch of really bad luck, trade off all their vets, and end up getting McDavid in a couple years.

    Can’t wait to see how the kids do against Finland/USA/Sweden.

    • RexLibris

      Good to see from Monahan and Poirier. That is encouraging news. It’d be a heck of a thing if the Flames could have a player or two on the squad and contribute to a gold medal this year. Okay, any medal would be nice.

      Now here’s the other shoe…

      This is my sincere advice to any fan who has some prospects in the Canadian National Junior picture: enjoy the invite and watch them closely for detailed improvement, but avoid getting too invested in their success or failure. Kevin Prendergast is still picking that team and I’ve seen far too many prospects look fantastic in the WJHC only to fall flat on their faces at the next level.

      Curtis Hamilton looked like a solid grinding winger in the Smith-Pelly mould, but a few years later is on track to be let go once his ELC is over.

      Remember Justin Pogge.

      At the same time, Darren Helm looked fantastic in his time on the team and has made the transition to the Red Wings.

      Like I said, not trying to be a downer, but I’d keep any team that Prendergast picks at arm’s length from my heart. Stick with evaluating the details of their game (defensive coverage, making high-percentage passes, moving to open shooting lanes, etc) and above all else ignore anything Prendergast says about your players.

      • RexLibris

        You are absolutely right that we should not get to excited, however it does help to validate the Flames scouts and whom they drafted. It will be interesting to see how the mini tournament goes and how they play there; again as part of player development.

        • piscera.infada

          I’ll agree as well that we shouldn’t start claiming them to be the second coming of Lemieux, or anything.

          I just find it funny that when Monahan was lighting up the dev. camp with Gaudreau people were saying “you can’t get too excited until they’re playing against good/better competition.” Now, its “don’t get excited about one game against good competition.” I mean, I understand the logic – I really do, small sample size, not the NHL, and all that. But, at what point are we allowed to get excited?

          • Parallex

            You answered your own question…

            “I understand the logic – I really do, small sample size, not the NHL, and all that.”

            … So follow what your head says is logical. If those are the reasons for you to not get excited wait until enough of them are no longer true (eg. the Small Sample Size ceases being small, they show well against NHL level talent, etc. etc.).

          • piscera.infada

            I think you miss the point. I understand not getting over-excited. It just seems like every time one of our prospects does something, someone needs to put an asterisk beside their name as if they were Alex Rodriguez. I’m not saying we use two goals and a shootout goal to justify that everything is peachy keen, but at some point I think we can get (at least a little) excited about our prospects having good prospect-type showings. No?

          • I think there’s plenty of reasons to get excited. Gaudreau’s resume is amazing. Baertschi tore apart the WHL in his draft+1 season. Gillies became the best goalie in the system out of nowhere.

            All prospect come with caveats until they make the show and start doing some damage of course.

          • Parallex

            I don’t think I miss the point at all. You say at some point you think we can get excited about our prospects having good prospect-type showings and I agree, there is a point where you and I and whomever else can legitimately get excited over that. The question is when is that point? For me logically it’s not after a couple of camps featuring predominantly amateur and minor-pro guys. If your assertation is that it should be at that time then I don’t miss the point I just disagree with it.

            Well… not “disagree”. You or anyone else can be excited as early as you want (really, who am I to say otherwise) but I don’t think someone can fault anyone else for the asterisk’s either.

  • Also, I doubt Cammy stays beyond this season. Why would he want to “stay on and mentor the kids” when he hasn’t won a Cup yet?

    I think, at best, you get a low 1st from a contender at the trade deadline, and possibly a mid-level prospect. Boosted by the fact that the Flames will give him every opportunity to score

  • T&A4Flames

    Cammi will lead the way up to the deadline. GlenX will finish with top points.

    I hope Stajan leads all point getters by the deadline but, obviously, nt likely.

    Backs will make a push to beat out GlenX.

    I could certainly see Jones being close. I’ve got mare faith in a resurgence by Jones than most. He will be given a lot of opportunity I think. Also given his physical attributes, I can see him playing a fair bit with Backs and Baers.

  • DoubleDIon

    Should Monahan,on the 9 game trial,light it up,you gotta keep him.Look for a couple young roster players ,from other teams with “cap” problems, land in in Calgary. Jay Feaster and his excellent staff,will wrangle ’em in.