From once there were 60, now, there are just 49.
With two days in between preseason games, the Calgary Flames have made their second round of training camp cuts (five were the first to be cut). There were no surprises in this list, with eight being assigned to the Stockton Heat, and three other players being returned to their respective junior teams, whose seasons have already gotten underway.
Five goalies, 17 defencemen, and 27 forwards remain at camp – for now.
Those assigned to the Heat are:
- C Mikkel Aagaard
- C Mike Angelidis
- C Matt Bailey
- LW Jamie Devane
- D Stepan Falkovsky
- D Keegan Kanzig
- G Mason McDonald
- RW Brett Pollock
Meanwhile, those returned to their junior teams:
- D Riley Bruce (North Bay Battalion, OHL)
- C Dillon Dube (Kelowna Rockets, WHL)
- RW Eetu Tuulola (Everett Silvertips, WHL)
Not everything is possible in this life – not quite yet – but none of these players were expected to be playing in the NHL this season. (Although we appear to have a better idea of just where Falkovsky might be spending his year: likely within the Flames’ pro ranks.)
The Flames still have to reduce their roster by another 26 players (27, if you count Johnny Gaudreau, who is not at camp at present time).
This includes cutting three goalies. Tyler Parsons, David Rittich, and Jon Gillies won’t be on the Flames’ opening night roster, but there are still four more preseason games to be played, so there’s no reason to put everything on Brian Elliott and Chad Johnson just yet. (Also, it’s great to see these three in particular sticking around a little longer, considering how two of them are brand new to the organization and Gillies is probably the greatest hope for the future.)
The Flames will also need to drop a handful more defencemen. While measuring the progress of Rasmus Andersson and Oliver Kylington is no doubt going to be something at the forefront for much of the season, the two big prospective names to keep an eye on for the Flames right now are Tyler Wotherspoon and Brett Kulak, both of whom could potentially see extended NHL time this season.
The forward group also still has to be reduced drastically, but that’s the area where the most questions remain. Pollock was perhaps the most exciting pro forward to get the axe so far, but there will undoubtedly be more to follow. Names to definitely continue keeping an eye on at this point include Morgan Klimchuk, Emile Poirier, Mark Jankowski, Hunter Shinkaruk, and, of course, Matthew Tkachuk.
Tkachuk and Parsons are the only Flames picks from the 2016 NHL Draft to remain at camp.