Breaking: Flames Fire Feaster & Weisbrod



The Flames official Twitter account has announced that Jay Feaster and John Weisbrod have been relieved of their duties.

A press conference with real, actual details is coming up at 11am.

  • supra steve

    Has there ever been a GM who was more distinguished at throwing out quotes that make himself look stupid than Feaster?

    A random sample:

    “We will make the playoffs this year.”

    “Cervenka is the best player not in the NHL.”

    “We will get it done.” — early last season on extending Iggy

    “We disagree with the NHL’s interpretation” — on ROR

    Turning your company/franchise into a running joke in the league is not a good way to keep your job.

    It is curious, though, that Burke’s yearly Christmas trade ban is now in place but he nevertheless pulled the trigger on Feaster.

  • redricardo

    So to summarize Burke’s explanation of why Feaster is gone:

    The hard part of rebuilding is trying to manage assets, but Feaster did a good job of that, and managing the cap.

    Drafts are important, and you need to hit a homerun. Also, Feaster did that this year.

    The team is playing good, and he’s proud of them, but disappointed in the ability to hold leads the last month, but this had nothing to do with it.

    All that being said, Burke knows how to win, and you have to be big and mean, and even though Feaster did all the things Burke said were important… You know… #Gritchart.

      • redricardo

        My favourite part of the press conference, as I was waiting for the explanation, was how Burke kept giving legitimate reasons to fire someone, but then kept backing off that, and had it boil down to “I know how to win”. Very KLowe-esque.

        “We need someone who can nail the draft, we need a homerun… And Jay did that this year.

        The hardestpart of a rebuild in TO was getting out from under the contracts… And Jay has left us in good shape there.

        But I know how to win, so trust me… This change had to be made”

        (These are actual (close) quotes from the press conference, not something I’m making up for humorous effect)

        • Parallex

          That’s one of the things I found confusing about the firing… even before Burke came on board Feaster was doing quite a few Burke type things, Example: Picking up college guys (Bozak/Hanson), grabbing Euro goalies to see if they work out (Gustavsson), Talking about wanting to get bigger (various interviews), besides the Jankowski pick (and even that resulted in getting a guy known for “truculance” in Sieloff) his drafting has been very good.

          For the life of me I really don’t see anything that Feaster’s done since starting the rebuild that warrented his removal even just from the perspective of Burke’s known proclivities.

  • Colin.S

    Never have I ever been so frustrated, why wisebrod? I hope we keep Hartley and don’t attempt a phill kessel like trade. Friggggggg!!! I hope we just keep on doing what we have been doing and don’t mess this rebuild up I don’t want the flames to end up like Toronto.

  • Colin.S

    Listen, from this Oiler-fan’s perspective … this is a bit of a scary move. We can all make fun of Burke and his bombastic, truculent style, but the guy’s won in this league and I think he knows how to build a team.

    He made Vancouver a contender and he won a Cup in Anaheim. The Leafs, although up-and-down a bit this year, turned a corner last year and it was largely with players he drafted or acquired. He drafted (and later traded for) Chris Pronger and pulled a bunch of complex strings to get the Sedin twins together. His career as a GM makes many others pale in comparison nowadays (which is probably a bit sad, but that’s not his fault). He’s not Cliff Fletcher, obviously, but he’s been pretty damn good at the job for a long time.

    We all knew this was coming, of course – although who knew it would take this long? Feaster couldn’t bring himself to even utter the word “rebuild” until sometime last year and that’s obviously set the franchise back at least two years. The O’Reilly almost-signing was an almost-disaster of epic proportion. In the first round of the draft, he took a high school kid from a hockey country where high school hockey has ZERO upside (Canada). He dithered on Iginla for too long and got little in return. He got nothing for Kiprusoff, who probably could have helped two or three playoff teams last year.

    And all of the above in the last 12 months!

    And, no doubt, it will certainly be entertaining as Burkie squabbles with the Calgary media.

    But, from up here, you’ll hear no crowing from me. A spinoff of Burke’s Calgary takeover is that it further turns up the heat on Oilers management which hasn’t accomplished anything close to what Burke’s done in this league.

    As far as I’m concerned, MacT and the Oilers are now REALLY on the clock. I’m just hoping Burke doesn’t pick it up and hit them over the head with it.

    • Parallex

      “but the guy’s won in this league and I think he knows how to build a team.”

      He’s also lost in this league and built bad teams.

      Yes, he was GM of a team that won a cup (with a team largely built by someone else) you know who else has done that… Feaster. Burke’s successes are all in the not so recent past and his failures a whole lot fresher in the memory.

      Say what you will about Feaster but I always got the impression from him that he knew what he didn’t know, Burke more gives the impression that he thinks he knows everything.

      • redricardo

        To be honest i think that this is a great move. Heard Ken Holland talking about developing players and his quote was, “The NHL is not the league for players to learn how to play the game. We believe in seasoning guys in the minors so that they can learn to play properly. It is a very rare guy who can come into the league and develop his skill/ confidence in the NHL. This is just not the way we do things in Detroit.”

        Sven is a player who is not playing with confidence. Stats support this. (2 goals/ limited minutes) He is too important to have flounder. He needs to go down and dominate, regain confidence and play a crap load of minutes. I actually think that this move shows that Burke values Sven too much to watch him take steps backward.

  • everton fc

    What is the point of this move?

    Will getting a new GM make the team better?

    Yup, Feaster made some bad moves. This doesn’t mean the next GM will be any better.

    When the team sucks next year, will that new GM also get fired? Or maybe the team will hire a “Proconsul of the adjunct President” to make Burke a lame duck and then fire Burke in a year and a half?

    At best, this team moves sideways, regardless of management changes. This is not necessarily a bad thing at this point in time.

    This team has gaping holes at every position. This will only be resolved via good drafting. This means it will take time, since, you know, drafted players take time to develop.

    Just remember kiddies, the first year Sidney Crosby played for the Penguins and amassed 102 points, the team finished second last in the league.

  • everton fc

    I was surprised. I liked Feaster and thought that he and Weisbrod had us on a good track. Liked our draft picks, college signing and AHL team Having said that if asked to evaluate him it would be like a C+. He’s just made too many mistakes. (though I’ve defended him here often) I would speculate that Janko, JBo return, Iginla mess at trade deadline, Regehr trade, RoR offer sheet, Euro goalie mess, waiting too long to move talent- all factored into the decision.

    I think that Feaster is a decent GM but not sure he is elite. Burke holds a great press conference but I don’t know about him picking the next GM. Hopefully he gets the right guy.

    While I am not thrilled about the move I also am not hitting the panic button. He did talk about the importance of skill and looking at his draft record and trades it is clear that he recognizes the need for skilled players. (I don’t think he is in the same mold as Sutter)

    I see this more as a lateral move with the hiring of the next GM as the trigger that either makes it a great move or a mistake!

    Was thrilled to hear that Burke contacted BC college straight away and talked about what a great player he thought Johnny G was.

    • Parallex

      Kind of rich if those are the reasons considering that Burke himself has made bad trades and fished around in the Euro leagues for goalies in the not to distent past.

      • McRib

        Truthfully I was surprised. Most would say Feaster has been okay. (Don’t think that you can argue that he has been brilliant or truly terrible. Some good some bad.)

        I have heard some proclaim that if they made a massive RoR blunder in their line of work that they would have been fired right then. None of us will ever know the exact reasoning but I gotta think that Janko, RoR, Iginla fiasco, JBo move etc. contributed to decision.

        If nothing else I expect that fans will have more to comment on. Burke is never boring….

  • Graham

    Edward’s made it clear last year that he expected the team to be competitive, and to be in a hunt for a playoff spot. Feaster simply failed to deliver, and has paid the price.
    Failed return on key trades, suspect drafting, the potential ROR disaster, lack of intellectual honesty, failed use of cap space, key prospects taking backward steps to name a few. Bravo Burke, you made the moves that needed to be made.

  • Lober

    I’m a big fan of the Berra/Ramo situation. It’s a lot better then it could have been considering Kippers retirement. Give Ramo some time and I’m sure he’ll be at least an average NHL goalie. And many teams have won the cup with average goaltending.

  • redricardo

    Damien Cox is arguing that Burke should be the GM of the Flames.

    Cox thinking it’s a good idea, is the best counter argument on why Burke should NOT be the GM

  • McRib

    From day 1 I have been a Feaster supporter. He drafted a lot of good prospects for us and did a lot of positive things for this organization without much to work with.

    That being said I can live with this move as long as players like Gaudreau, Sven and Brodie don’t get traded..

    These 3 are smaller than our other top young players and I feel they are integral to our rebuild.

    I just hope Burke does too.

  • McRib

    Now that I have digested the shock from this morning, I actually don’t mind this move. You look at Jay Bouwmeester who is currently 7th in defense scoring (+13)… You gotta think we could have gotten more in a trade for him than we did….

    That’s the thing with Feaster he made some likeable moves, but also could have done better in almost every situation. I am an advocate of getting Mark Jankowski & Sieloff, but would be the first to admit I would have much rathered Girgensons, Teravainen, Hertl, Laughton, Maatta, etc.

    I think the biggest thing for me is Feaster was growing on me because of some prospects success (Monahan, Poirier, Johnny Hockey, etc) and the AHL teams record, but we also could have done better and was more shocked at the timing of the firing if anything.

    • Colin.S

      I agree with most of what you say minus having Girgensons, really hasn’t impressed me that much and is supposed to have a much lower ceiling as well.

      As well the Bouwmeester point. The problem with Bouwmeester was never him, it was our utilization and deployment of him. We never played him the way a player like him should be played. We never gave him the opportunity to be flashy or put up big points or give him a half decent defensive partner that he could rely on(LOL BUTLER!). I think he played with Giordano here and there, but for he was also partnered with other very immobile defensemen. It’s hardly Feasters fault what happened with Bouwmeester, that ship had long sailed by the time he was hired(lol Sutter).

  • Jeff Lebowski

    I’m totally disappointed by this move. This is the worst decision that could’ve been made IMO.

    Not winning enough during a rebuilding year?! Look at the drafting record of the fired regime. Look at the AHL Heat .

    Fire the coach if the team isn’t ‘performing’.

    I was so proud of the direction Calgary was headed.

    This just reeks of desperation, zero planning and forgoing process in favour of (financial) results

    How about that as a standard for how Calgary had been doing in terms of results.

    F$&k you Burke. I’m done.

  • WildBill_1485

    First of all, I would like to apologize for the way I come across sometimes. I do not mean to question anyone’s passion or love for our team, like someone said, that’s why we are all here and everyone’s point is just as valid as my own. I get fired up sometimes (because of the way my career was taken from me), like any kid in Canada I lived and breathed (playing) this game from the first time my parents put me in skates when I was 4.

    To Parallex:
    I do not have to prove anything to you, I will stick behind the point of a user name for the intended purpose of it, anonymity. But for the record, I was 14 when I attended my first WHL main camp, and to give you an idea of my current age that was back when Edmonton had the Ice. The ‘4th rate senior quasi-beer league’ I played in paid for my first degree, hence the reason fighting was frowned upon in the league. Having played 4 years of junior before that, where fighting was allowed, I can tell you first hand the difference between two such leagues. When guys lose the fear of being held accountable for their actions, everyone becomes the toughest guy on earth. Stickwork, trash talking, and dirty play goes way up. If you do not believe me, go watch the Sait Trojans play, then compare it to a Calgary Hitmen game. That is best way I can ‘prove it to you’.

    To Southern Point:
    I am sorry I came across as questioning your own personal masculinity. All I was saying there was that there is a reason why a hockey player breaks his leg and still tries to get to the bench, and a reason why a basketball player gets a leg cramp and needs to be carried off the court. To this day there has not been a female skater in the NHL, I guess I was only wrong in saying “hockey” instead of “the NHL” (and all the leagues that feed into it). I do not mean to take anything away from women’s hockey, I have coached both genders and the team I currently coach was fortunate enough to play the Canadian Women’s team this year, and those girls can play. They are just two different games however, and I don’t think that is unfair to say.

    “Also I live Canada so of course ‘I’ve laced up a pair.’ You aren’t going to war to kill people you are playing sport.”

    Sorry I do not mean for this to sound condescending again, but right there is what I mean by “competitively”. If you haven’t played at a level where you are going to ‘war’ figuratively, then you don’t have the same understanding of the game as I do. Not saying that ‘that’ is better or worse than you, it is just what I chose to do with my life. I never played football before, I don’t go around saying the rules need to be changed because there are so many head injuries. People still pay money to see it.

    To everyone else:
    Again, sorry. Do not mean to be ‘that guy’, I’ll try and keep er calmer!
    That is just where I come from!

  • EugeneV

    I agree with those who have said that being big isn’t the answer. Being skilled and small also not the recipe. Need to have a combo of size/speed and skill. Darren Haynes wrote on twitter

    “When Chicago beat the Bruins to win 2013 Stanley Cup, both teams combined had 5 players shorter than 6-foot-0. Tue vs Boston, #Flames had 6.”

    To be honest the best analogy is that old Nintendo Ice hockey video game where you could pick the super fast skinny guys or the huge fat slow guys. Usually the balanced team won. (great tunes to boot) Apologies to those born post Nintendo Ice Hockey. A true classic!

  • RedMan

    while theres a few thing I admire about Burke, overall Im not impressed.

    He is going to hire a GM and who ever it is has to believe in big teams, but he doesnt have to think just like him. huh?

    he can be a young GM that is mentored by an experienced guy. but he wont be a puppet. huh?

  • Jeff Lebowski

    With time to digest, I’ve calmed a little bit. However, I am extremely concerned about the future direction of the rebuild. Feaster, for all his mistakes, restocked the talent pool – yes a drawback is the team got smaller – but Feaster recognized this.

    I recall Feaster commenting on the prospects early in his tenure here. No one calls him about the big, truculent guys the Flames had an abundance of (the JD Watts etc).

    He mentioned that if Calgary had good (read: skilled) young prospects they would’ve been up with the team. So he and Weisbrod in an incredibly short amount of time remade what was once a laughingstock, of prospect depth into one regarded as in the top 10 (by outside scouts). 2 freaking drafts, he did that.

    Burke is driven by his massive ego. It seems to me he felt like he was hired to make his mark. He wasn’t going to evaluate the team and conclude: all good here. Keep it up. Or we just need to emphasize size a little more but the preference for high IQ is a winner.

    Nope. He had to prove why he was hired in the first place. Does anyone think he wasn’t looking for reasons to rid the org of Feaster? Ego. He thought the first question to be asked was if he was taking job. Of course he did. Everything is about him. My teams this and I like that… Fool! His ego and it’s detrimental consequences eventually do this prick in every time. He doesn’t learn. Sounds like Kevin Lowe.

    How far removed is this org from the debacle of the Sutter drafting and development philosophy? We’re going back to that?!

    IF Burke made the move because last regime was getting fleeced and/or certain due diligence requirements were over looked, I can live with that. If he recognizes the prospects improvement and adds size by replacing vets that’s ok.

    IF Burke wants to trade prospects and skill guys for useless meatheads then I’m going to put a voodoo hex on Burke.

    If Burke returns CGY to Darryl like drafting/philosophy if he gives up on kids and tries to undo ‘mistakes’ he’s going to set this org back YEARS.

    Hopefully the methods Feaster/Weisbrod employed for drafting are preserved.