Let’s Talk Rosters

It’s an off-day today. The Flames are traveling to Vancouver for Game 82 tomorrow. The Heat are resting after a hard-fought 3-2 win over the Oklahoma City Barons (the Baby Oilers) last night.

There’s a big double-header on Sunday: Heat/Barons at 2pm MT on Sportsnet 360, then Flames/Canucks on Sportsnet West at 7pm MT.

For giggles, let’s take a quick gander at the roster of the playoff-bound Abbotsford Heat.


The Heat could be really stacked for the playoffs, depending where the guys they’re getting back from Calgary and that they’re getting from junior fit in.

Lines from Friday’s game (via Drury18 on CalgaryPuck):

Max Reinhart – Ben Street – Blair Jones
Sven Baertschi – Corban Knight – Tim Miller
Morgan Klimchuk – Brett Olson – Corey Locke
Carter Bancks – Garret Hathaway – Josh Jooris

Brett Kulak – Dean Arsene
Shane O’Brien – Derek Smith
Zach Davies – Kane LaFrancise

Joni Ortio
Doug Carr

Injured: Trevor Gillies, Michael Ferland, Patrick Sieloff

Scratches: Olivier Roy, Brady Lamb, Collin Valcourt, Alan MacPherson, Jordan Kremyr, Jessey Astles, Coda Gordon, Zach Tolkinien

Coming In or Back: Ben Hanowski (already assigned), Chris Breen, Chad Billins, Markus Granlund (when medically cleared), Emile Poirier, Eric Roy (maybe), Keegan Kanzig (maybe), Ryan Culkin (maybe/eventually)

Okay. I figure that Hanowski replaces Miller. If they slot Poirier in, and I’d imagine the Flames would suggest this, Hathaway comes out and they juggle lines a bit – no way Poirier plays on the fourth line. I’d also venture that the Billins/Breen tandem replaces Davies/LaFranchise and Roy replaces Carr as the back-up. When Granlund comes back, I have no clue who sits; Olson’s been quite good all year, Locke’s been good and Bancks is a heart-and-soul intangibles player. But Granlund is offensive gold, so you dress him if he’s available.

Anyhow, check out the Heat tomorrow. And then imagine them with a handful of NHL guys in two weeks when they open the playoffs against Chicago.

SIGNED FOR 2014-15

A few chances since the last time we did this. Calgary has 33 players on deals for next season, but three deals could slide per the terms of the CBA.


  • Karri Ramo [$2.75m]
  • RFA: Joni Ortio (will return), Olivier Roy (unlikely)
  • UFA: Joey MacDonald (gone)
  • Prospects: Jon Gillies (NCAA)


  • Dennis Wideman [$5.25m] (compliance buy-out candidate?)
  • Mark Giordano [$4.02m]
  • Ladislav Smid [$3.5m]
  • Kris Russell [$2.6m]
  • T.J. Brodie [$2.125m]
  • Shane O’Brien [$2m] (trade candidate, or he’ll be stuck in AHL)
  • Keegan Kanzig [$925k] (not AHL eligible; contract can slide a year)
  • Tyler Wotherspoon [$925k]
  • Patrick Sieloff [$925k]
  • John Ramage [$900k]
  • Brett Kulak [$657k]
  • Ryan Culkin [$657k]
  • RFA: Chad Billins (unsure), Mark Cundari (unsure), James Martin (gone)
  • UFA: Chris Butler (unlikely but possible), Chris Breen (unsure), Derek Smith (gone)
  • Prospects: Eric Roy (WHL), John Gilmour (NCAA), Rushan Rafikov (Europe)


  • Jiri Hudler [$4m]
  • David Jones [$4m]
  • Corban Knight [$3.75m]
  • Matt Stajan [$3.125m]
  • Curtis Glencross [$2.55m]
  • Johnny Gaudreau [$1.85m]
  • Sean Monahan [$1.775m]
  • Mikael Backlund [$1.5m]
  • Sven Baertschi [$1.425m]
  • Bryce van Brabant [$1.35m]
  • Morgan Klimchuk [$925k] (not AHL eligible; contract can slide a year)
  • Emile Poirier [$925k] (AHL eligible, but contract can still slide a year)
  • Josh Jooris [$925k]
  • Markus Granlund [$925k]
  • Bill Arnold [$900k]
  • Ken Agostino [$900k]
  • Max Reinhart [$878k]
  • Michael Ferland [$798k]
  • Brian McGrattan [$750k]
  • Turner Elson [$565k]
  • RFA: T.J. Galiardi (unsure), Ben Hanowski (unsure), Paul Byron (will return), Joe Colborne (will return), Lance Bouma (will return), David Eddy (gone)
  • UFA: Kevin Westgarth (unsure), Mike Cammalleri (unlikely), Blair Jones (unsure), Ben Street (unsure)
  • Prospects: Matt Deblouw (NCAA), Tim Harrison (NCAA), Mark Jankowski (NCAA)

Yep. The Flames only have seven unsigned prospects in their system.

      • acg5151

        I like how you guys complain about how much a player is going to make. If you’re not even close to being a cap team, and you won’t be for a few years, what difference does it make whether a guy deserves his contract or not? It’s not like this team loses money. It’s doubtful you could make it to the cap spending on free agents since good players don’t want to be on rebuilders.

      • On Sunday, with and Islander win and Flames loss the Flames will draft 4th (pending a lottery shift). Assuming Bennett, Ekblad and Reinhart are gone Leon Draistl will be a Flame! That will be enormous for this franchise!!

        • beloch

          Not so fast bud; the Oilers in third (assuming there is no lottery change) means Burke has twice as much opportunity to wheel and deal for a higher draft pick (Ekblad) he can even play the top 2 against each other.

          The Oil really screwed themselves with a win tonight!


      • Anyone think Flames Nation should approach Beloch with an offer sheet? Well written, incisive analyses, often his comments are better than the main postings. Give him Lambert’s job at the very least. Nice work Beloch, thanks!

      • Going back to Ryan’s original article and the fact that the Flames only have 33 players under contract. To be an effective and competitive organization you need at least 46 players under contract, 23 for both the NHL team and 23 for the AHL. Of the 23 in the AHL ten(at least) need to be
        solid NHL prospects. It is likely that the Flames organization will be resigning at least a handful of players Ryan is unsure of or he says is gone.

        The Flames have one goalie under contract in their organization so it doesn’t take a brain surgeon to see that they will sign Ortio. The question is Roy or the guy the Heat signed good enough or do the Heat/Flames go out into the UFA market of goalies and sign two fresh faces. I think you will see Roy resigned and the organization will kick the tires on a number of unknown UFA’s.

        On D there are currently 12(11 unless you believe that Knazig can be an everyday NHLer next season, 10 if we exclude O’B) and you need at least 14. So lets start with UFA’s I suspect there is better than a 50/50 chance that we resign one of these 3 and Butler is by far the best of this bunch, so don’t be surprised if he is back, Now the other option is to sign at least one NHL UFA defender, how many of the UFA defenders will be better than Butler at a reasonable price.(here is a few names Meszeros, Nikitin,Stoner,Strahlman,Niskanen, Lee, Ranger) Yes Burke could also pull off a trade, but again hopefully the price in regards to assets will not be to high. I also suspect he will sign 1 of either Billins or Cundari plus Roy.

        Up front you need 26 forwards, I count 19 under contract plus Klimchuk who can only play at the NHL level next year and I doubt he will be able to beat out the list of high end prospects next year. If as many on this sight suggest we buy out DJones then we would be down to 18. Personally I would keep him because he is a big, skilled, RW whom the coach was praising prior to his latest injury. Starting with the RFA it would be crazy not to resign Bouma, Colbourne and Byron.(22) I also think it is likely that you resign Hanowski(he will play in the AHL) and I would resign TJG as well. Street and BJones are interesting as both help the organizational depth but I doubt either would be satisfied with being regulated to the AHL and if they would be the Heat can sign them to a contract. That now leaves us with 2-4 contracts to fill and the UFA’s. Again there are some interesting names out there who might help this team immediately and for the short term (older guys like Jagr) but I’m not sure I would go there (I like the direction of our forwards) and the group between 28-31 including Cammi, Stastny,Grabowski,Callahan,Setoguchi, Legwand(33), Mason, Kuleman, Moulson, Vanek to name a few. I’m not sure how many of these I would be really interested in as it would hinder the development of our younger guys. Of course there is the free agents from college that could still fill a few holes; ie Hayes out of BC. Burke of course will be looking at players via trade and again I hope he does not go too crazy with assets or prospects.

        There are some holes in this organization the Burke needs to fill, depth at goal, a stronger 2nd pairing on the blueline, a couple of skilled power forwards with skill (RW if possible) but for the first time in along there is some depth and skill in this organization. The development of some of these players will take some time; hopefully the organization can show some patience.

      • loudogYYC

        Not sure why people are already putting NHL expectations on these guys. Arnold and possibly Guadreau will need at least a year with Abby to learn the pro game. It didn’t hurt Granlund did it?

        • loudogYYC

          I have extremely high expectations of them; play hard and play your best. If these are too high I’m sorry.(but I have those for everyone who plays) Actually I think the level of expectations is more an air of excitement rather than Johnny being St Louis today.

          Your absolutely right that a year in the AHL did not hurt Granlund and probably won’t hurt either of these guys but in saying that I don’t want them held back just for the experience of the AHL. This years training camps should be filled with competition and may the best prepared and hardest working players be rewarded. At center we have Stajan, Backs and Monahan (probably locks) and then Granlund, Knight, Arnold and even Joorish. In the wing the following skilled guys: Hudler, Glenx(he also fits the grit side as well),Sven, Johnny, Agostino, Poirier, Klimchuk, and Rhino(he may be better suited for the other role but I’m not sure). On the grit/size/energy side: Bouma, Colborne, Byron, McG, Ferland, Hankowski, and van B.

          I’m sure I missed some guys but it does not matter; let them compete and if someone earns a job let them play. When the young guys struggle don’t be afraid to either sit them or send them down. If a vet goes into a funk let them sit for a kid.