So the Calgary Flames will not be in the playoffs. It’s sad, but it’s true. But for you hearty souls that are starved for playoff action, there are several teams with tenuous connections to the Flames that may be headed to the post-season – or have already begun the second season.
Here’s a look at the non-Flames Flames squads, most chock-full of prospects, and where they sit in regards to the playoffs.
IN THE PLAYOFFS
Barrie Colts (OHL): Home of Flames golden children Rasmus Andersson and Andrew “Megapain” Mangiapane, the Colts have clinched the second seed in the OHL’s Eastern Conference. They’ll face Mississauga or Peterborough in the first round.
North Bay Battalion (OHL): Home of 2015 seventh round pick Riley Bruce, the Battalion will be the third or fourth team in the Eastern Conference. It’s not yet clear who they’ll face, as the middle of the playoff pack is a bit of a mess.
Charlottetown Islanders (QMJHL): Mason McDonald’s team has qualified for the playoffs. But they’re in the weird middle-of-the-pack clump (the Q does a 1-to-16 seeding instead of conferences) and could drop a bit. It’s unclear who they’ll be playing, but they’re in the bottom half of the league’s playoff teams. They could be out after the first round.
Calgary Hitmen (WHL): The Hitmen have clinched 3rd place in their division. They’ll face Red Deer in the first round. Red Deer is pretty good, but motivation may be a factor since they’re going to be in the Memorial Cup regardless of how they do in the playoffs. Keegan Kanzig and Pavel Karnaukhov play here.
Boston University (Hockey East): Brandon Hickey’s team got knocked out of their conference playoffs, but they’re ranked high enough in the pairwise rankings that they’re likely going to get an at-large birth in the NCAA national tournament.
Providence College (Hockey East): Mark Jankowski and John Gilmour’s team lost in their semi-final game yesterday – in triple overtime – but they’re one of the top-ranked teams in the country and will likely still be a team with a great seeding in the NCAA national tournament.
We’ll find out who Boston University and Providence College play on Sunday morning.
Stockton Heat (AHL): It’s mathematically possible for the Heat to make the post-season in the formula the AHL is using. They have to leap-frog Bakersfield, San Jose and the potential crossover team in Charlotte in terms of points percentage. They have 14 games remaining, but it’s going to be an uphill battle.
Edmonton Oil Kings (WHL): The Oil Kings (Brett Pollock) are in the last wild card spot, and can clinch the spot tomorrow merely by not losing. (Or if Medicine Hat loses to Lethbridge.) Anyway, they’re probably crossing over to face Brandon.
Medicine Hat Tigers (WHL): Home of Nick Schneider, Medicine Hat makes the playoffs if they beat Lethbridge tomorrow and Edmonton loses to Red Deer. Anyway, they’re probably not going to make it.
Colgate University (ECAC): Tim Harrison’s team lost in their opening round against Dartmouth and are low enough ranked that their season is over.
Michigan State University (B10): Matt DeBlouw’s team lost in their opening round against Ohio State and are low enough ranked that their season is also over. Keep an eye out, as since he’s a graduating senior he might show up in the AHL or ECHL.