All Is Well: Flames Re-Sign Lance Bouma

The usual small bit of mid-week apprehension has slightly dissipated, as the Calgary Flames have announced the signing of forward Lance Bouma to a one-year contract.

It was the final piece of business left before the Flames begin rookie camp on September 11. No terms were immediately available beyond the one-year term. We’re left to presume it’s a “show-me” contract similar to that signed by Paul Byron, if only because that would make some sense.

Bouma was Calgary’s third round selection, 78th overall, in a 2008 Draft that’s looking pretty strong between him and fourth round selection T.J. Brodie. He turned 24 in March, and capped off a pretty solid first full NHL campaign following a scary knee injury just three games into the 2012-13 season in Abbotsford. He was among the NHL’s leaders in shot blocks, among Calgary’s leaders in penalty-kill ice-time and hits, and was arguably Calgary’s heart-and-soul player. (I’d say Giordano’s the team’s conscience, Bouma’s the team’s soul.) His October performance at home against the New Jersey Devils – where Bouma blocked everything that moved and seemingly guilted his teammates into doing the same with his gutsy play – probably cemented his spot on the NHL roster.

A native of nearby Provost, Alberta, Bouma played his junior hockey with the Vancouver Giants, going to the 2007 Memorial Cup (which they hosted and won) and serving as the team’s captain during his final year in the Dub. Hardly a scoring machine as a pro, Bouma’s developed into an intangibles player that teams need to win championships, but are hard to pinpoint in terms of value.

We’ll have an update as soon as term (dollars and one-way/two-way) becomes available.

  • Parallex

    I’m guessing 1-way, 950K.

    Glad to have Bouma back. He’s not an incredably valuable player but he’s a favorite of mine and a guy that I watched play in junior and knew he’d make the show.

    He’s basically what you want in an ideal 4th line player. A guy who’s inexpensive, won’t hurt you 5v5, works incredably hard, and has a good niche skill (in Bouma’s case PK work).

  • Parallex

    It’s about time, Bouma is a better option than some other players on the third and fourth lines and I don’t need to name names but we all know who I’m talking about.

  • Parallex

    I like Buoma and indeed he is a heart and soul guy. I’m a bit surprised at the 1 year “prove yourself” contract….in my books this kid did that last year and should have been secured on a 3 year deal….now he will have other options at end of next season…good for the Flames I guess??

  • Ladies & gents…welcome to the 2014-15 edition of the Flames.

    CapGeek has a fairly accurate picture of the team I think…with 14 Forwards, 6 Defence and 2 Goalies on the dole.

    Included amongst the forward group is:
    – Monahan & Gaudreau on ELCs,
    – McGrattan, Bollig bringing truculence, and
    – Byron and Bouma as niche role players.

    Top Prospects looking for a place on the big club include:
    – Bennett (for 9 games at least?)
    – Granlund, Baertschi, Poirier with skill
    – Reinhart, Ferland, Wolf with a mix of size, tenacity, truculence
    – Knight with defensive forward credentials and a right shot, and
    – Arnold, Agostino, Hanowski with varying skill-sets and an outside shot.

    On Defence there are no surprises, only questions. Cundari, Wotherspoon, Sieloff would appear to have the best chance at being the #7D to round out the group.

    GFG!!!

  • Parallex

    So…burning questions and predictions time:
    – who will be the first two forwards traded and when?
    – how many games will Granlund, Baertschi, Reinhart, Knight and Ferland play in the NHL this year?
    – how many games do Cundari, Wotherspoon and Sieloff play in the NHL this year?
    – what position do the Flames pick in the 2015 entry draft? and the Oilers?

    • Parallex

      Who will be the first two forwards traded and when?

      – Paul Byron (around game 20) & Jiri Hudler (deadline):

      How many games will Granlund, Baertschi, Reinhart, Knight and Ferland play in the NHL this year?

      – 7, 20, 10, 30, and 0.

      How many games do Cundari, Wotherspoon and Sieloff play in the NHL this year?

      – 30 (get’s 7th d-man out of camp job), 14, 0.

      What position do the Flames pick in the 2015 entry draft? and the Oilers?

      – 2nd or 3rd. 5th or 6th.

      • Parallex

        Thanks..well-rounded answers..:) Can see the rationale in your responses.

        Some food for thought:

        re Trades…rather than waiting to the deadline for the 2nd trade could you see an earlier deal done, perhaps in Jan/Feb, for DJones, Glencross or Seto, perhaps in combination with a prospect?

        re Knight (30 games) and Ferland (0 games)…an interesting and thought-provoking perspective.

        Rest is pretty straight up.

        • Parallex

          RE: Ferland & Knight

          Ferland didn’t have quite the bad year that Sieloff had but it was pretty bad for him from a life perspective, I think he’s basically a year behind developmentally so a full year in the AHL for him (plus he’s competing with a lot of guys for call-up slots).

          Knight is more complicated… if I think Byron get’s traded 25% of the way through the season then someone comes up to take his place (his place in my mind being the 13th forward), ordinarily that would be your Blair Jones or Ben Street types but we don’t have those guys so we’re looking for an older prospect, who preferably can play center if need be, would help if he has some size considering the predilations of the F.0., shooting right would be nice to… Knight is the guy that checks all those boxes so I picked him to get spareman duty (30ish games).

    • SickFloBro

      1. I think the Flames need more depth at RW. A quick glance at the players they have under contract reveals a terrible lack of personnel at that position. I think we see a LW and a C go this year. Glencross I would think is certainly going to go… probably closer to the deadline. Someone else already said Byron, so I’ll change it up and suggest Agostino as well…but Byron is a good bet.

      2. This is so hard to judge before camp, and it also depends on injuries. So, instead of answering how many games each will play individually, I’m just going to place the players in order of who I think will get the most games to the least: Granlund, Reinhart, Knight, Baertschi, Ferland

      Grandlund first because (I think we can all agree) he has the most upside between the 3 C’s I listed, Knight and Reinhart is pretty much a toss-up between whoever is playing better and who goes down to injury/gets moved. I’m a big Baertschi fan, so I really hope he elevates his game, but I think a scorer needs to go down for him to come up. Ferland gets a shot or two with the big club.

      3. Same system as above… Wotherspoon, Cundari, Sieloff.

      I think the Flames want Wotherspoon to play, so I don’t think he makes the team out of camp. I’d guess they keep Cundari for that because he’s older and might be able to better handle long stretches of not playing…7th D and all. But I think Wotherspoon ends up playing more games overall once injuries hit. After last season, Sieloff needs games, period. AHL for him.

      4. This is tough with the new draft rules put in place. Maybe a better question is: where do the Flames/Oilers finish the year?

      Flames: 28th – 30th
      Oilers: 24th – 27th

  • Parallex

    Glad he’s been re-signed, but is anyone else a little worried that there’s only spot open for a rookie this season.

    Given Baertshi, Gaudreau, Reinhart and Granlund all knocking on the door, if not right now, then by season’s end, some moves are going to have to be made.

    • Parallex

      Oh yes make no mistake there will be plenty of moves! Flames fans need not be reminded this is a 27th place team. I’m guessing BB/BT will change the current roster drastically within the next 2 years including movement of veterans, prospects and draft choices. All for the better I hope!

    • Parallex

      No, not concerned at all (personally I see 0 spots open for forwards and only 1 for a defenseman). Want to show you can play great in the NHL? Then I want to see you actually play great in the AHL because if you can’t play great there then you won’t play great here.

      And spots will open up during the season… guys will get injured and guys will get traded. Anyone who earns a shot will eventually get one.

    • PrairieStew

      re worried – Yes absolutely.

      If we are only forecasting a 28th-30th place finish next year…would rather invest 2 roster positions (160 games) into development experience for the dozen or so prospects waiting in the wings.

      In straight business risk assessment terms when looking at team development…:
      “What is the downside risk versus the upside opportunity?”

      Likely the biggest risk is the young ones would outplay Seto, Jones, McGrattan, Byron and/or Bouma. Then the team would finish higher than desired…

      • PrairieStew

        I don’t see the downside of guys under 24 or 25 playing in AHL and developing their game. The only risk in terms of skill is that it gets too easy for them and they get lazy. That shouldn’t happen if you are trying to prove you belong in NHL. That hasn’t happened yet either – witness their first round exit last year. The upside is more ice time and playing on a winning team. To me there is downside developmental risks for guys like Sven, Johnny and Granlund if they are in the NHL and playing 4th line minutes with low skill guys. That – coupled with gripping your stick too tight worrying about mistakes and then getting benched when you do, also is developmental risk.

        All of those guys had to show they were dominant at every level before moving on to the next one. I’d love to see 3 dominant lines of guys under 25 (save maybe Wolf) ripping up the AHL this year forcing management’s hand to move some veterans. Yes the Flames might be a 25th or worse team and yes they might be more skilled if Sven and Johnny play more minutes than Bollig, McGrattan, or Jones – but the team won’t be appreciably better this year. Patience.

  • amaninvan

    If this is a “show me” contract, what exactly is the poor bugger supposed to do? Block shots with his face? He fills his energetic cannon fodder role to a tee.

    • I think it’s more of a “Bridge Deal” that are becoming more popular with GM’s these days. The only way it can back fire on you is in PK Subban’s situation. Other than that, if it creates a little competition for roster spots, I’m all for it. The only trick is to work on extensions for proven players like Backlund and Brody ASAP!

  • amaninvan

    Glad to see Bouma signed. Like you said Ryan, this guy epitomizes everything the current version of the Flames represent. Hard work, play tough and a willingness to put it all on the line for his teammates. If he picks up where he left off at the end of last season, he will once again be one of the unsung heroes in Calgary. The term is perfect, if he plays well the team can decide to resign or move this player for a future asset.

    I’m still not sure what Bolig brings to the team that Bouma can’t, but the two together should make it difficult for opposing teams lining up against the 4th line. Welcome back Lance!

  • PrairieStew

    I still think another NHL defenceman will be added before camp starts. There is just not enough NHL depth there.

    For the young forwards they have one another to compete with but don’t have to beat out AHL veterans like Blair Jones and Ben Street this year in order to get a shot. We will see lots of up and down.

    • supra steve

      I would ask, why add another D-man? Flames have 6 NHL vets and some youth to fill in the gaps.

      This is not a club that needs to carry a few extra D for the playoffs. If they get in injury trouble and the kids are playing horribly, there may still be a Derrick Morris type player out there for the signing.

      • The major advantage to adding some veterans on the D is for Addy, last year as bad as O’B was in Calgary he was an asset in Abby as was DSmith. At this point I have not heard of Addy adding any AHL veteran defencemen.

  • With 9 established NHL forwards, 4 emerging NHL forwards and a host of prospects with potential the debate rages as to what is the best way to develop the prospects. Many here say more AHL games will help the likes of Sven, Granlund and the rest and to certain level this is correct however for some and I include these two and Johnny they also need a chance to step up and play at the next level. Granlund has played with men for 3 years now, 2 in Europe and made the transition to NAH without a lot of difficulty; he was arguably the best forward for the Heat last year and has little to prove at the AHL level. Starting the season in Addy will not hurt his development nor do I see it significantly helping him, in his 7 game call up he did not look desperately out of place.

    Sven has had his moments at the NHL level and he has shown he can contribute at this level, his consistency needs improvement. Being at the AHL level does not seem to have overly benefited his game so will another stint there help his confidence.

    Johnny has dominated at the NCAA level against both men and boys, his play at the WJC showed he can more than hold his own against his peers and his play at the WHC this spring has demonstrated he can play against men(many of whom were NHL players and not AHL level). His play at training camp and in the preseason should determine where he plays.

    For me I hope the coaching and management allow the best players at camp and the preseason to start in the NHL regardless of their age or NHL experience. If the young guys falter by all means send them down but don’t just send them down because they are young. The prospects seem to me to have the best shot and being high end or maybe even borderline elite while some of the veterans will or have not ever gotten close to this.

  • I see the Flames prospects in 4 levels of readiness, those being NHL ready(capable of being in the NHL for long periods of development), those who are close and should see some NHL action during the season and could be ready for longer term action later in the season, those who could see some limited action at the end of the season and those who are likely AHL stuck.Group 1 includes:Johnny,Sven and Granlund up front and Spoon, Cundari and Sena(?), Group 2 Rhino, Knight,Ferland and Wolf up front with Sieloff and Ramage on the back end, Group three includes:Poirier, Agostino,Arnold, Hanowski and van B. Everyone else is AHL. The other kids on D need time to develop.

    Bennett, Klimchuk, Smith, Kanzig all go back to the CHL although I could see Bennett getting an NHL look.