Photo Credit: Sergei Belski / USA Today Sports

WWYDW: Talk the line(s)

Making lines in August is fun. Seriously, it is, and if you haven’t tried it, well, you’re missing out. Players are (usually) healthy and fit so neatly into place according to your idea of how they will succeed. Missing a right winger? No problem! Ol’ Tyler played RW in first-year bantam, it’ll work fine. Need a LD? Not to worry, how hard can it be to change sides!

You see? It’s easy and fun and that’s why we’re here to do it on a Wednesday.

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The Flames’ lineup is basically set, save for one or two small additions up front, preferably one with a winning smile and great dreds (h8ers step off), and possibly on the backend. So where does that leave the team for opening night? I am sure many of you, dear FN readers, have been scribbling lineups on the back of pizza boxes, gum wrappers, or in your minds as you drift to sleep.

Well, hard truth: none of that counts. I know you knew that Tkachuk was going to step into the NHL and be an effective player with Backlund and Frolik, but your co-workers, frankly, don’t believe you. It’s time to put your name on it. Here’s a chance to go on record with how you would arrange the lineup, front to back. Here’s what you have to choose from (among players with at least a modicum of NHL experience, aside from Foo):

Left Wing

  • Gaudreau, Ferland, Tkachuk, Bennett, Shinkaruk, Hrivik, Poirier, F. Hamilton


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  • Monahan, Backlund, Bennett, Stajan, Lazar, F. Hamilton, Jankowski

Right Wing

  • Frolik, Ferland, Brouwer, Versteeg, Lazar, Hathaway, F. Hamilton, Foo, Poirier

Left Defense

  • Brodie, Giordano, Kulak, Bartkowski, Wotherspoon, Kylington

Right Defense

  • D. Hamilton, Hamonic, Stone, Brodie (he’s done it before), Andersson

From here, you know the drill. You have to create a roster from these players, or with a free agent signing of some variety. I would suggest that you leave any trades you may have made (i.e. Stajan for Brad Marchand) off of your roster, but you know what? You do you.

As you can see from the choices, there are some players that can occupy multiple spots. I am pretty sure I saw Freddie Hamilton play every single position including goalie last year. This is about getting your name down on the eternal internet tubes so that when Troy Brouwer drinks that elixir, visits that high priestess, or figures out that he actually shoots left handed, you’ll get credit for putting him with Backlund and Shinkaruk long before Gulutzan figured it out.

I will give it a go, though I am only promising that it will be perfect in every way:

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  • Gaudreau – Monahan – Verstee(i)g(inla)
  • Tkachuk – Backlund – Frolik
  • Shinkaruk – Bennett – Ferland
  • Jankowski – Stajan – Brouwer
  • F. Hamilton – Lazar


  • Giordano – Hamilton
  • Brodie – Hamonic
  • Kulak – Stone
  • Wotherspoon

There you have it. My wild stab at predicting how things will look. There aren’t a whole lot of mysteries surrounding this year’s team, but I can say that it’s still fun imagining how it will all look come October. So have a go, don’t be afraid, and don’t miss a valuable chance to rub others’ noses in your brilliance once the season starts.

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  • HOCKEY83

    F. Hamilton, Jankowski

    Gio – Hamilton
    Brodie – Hamonic
    Kulak – Stone

          • TheoForever

            You will get to watch our playoff push, there will be no playoff games in coiler town this year, regression and unsustainable those are two words that describe your one and only playoff appearance in 12 years. Imagine 12 fricking years and one playoff appearance.
            Tell me during the dark days of the decade of suck how did you cope? Are you experiencing PTSD after being in shelled for that long? Can you sit down anymore?

          • Mr. J

            Theo you are gonna love this.. you asked how we coped with the last 12 years? You must have been so caught up with us you forgot about yourselves.
            The last 12 years of playoff series wins:
            Edmonton Oilers- 4
            Calgary flames- 1

            Lol so during that dark 12 yr period we still have accomplished more than you guys lol classic. Walked into that one theo

            And that’s how we cope…. oh yeah and it also helps having theee best hockey player in the WORLD on the Edmonton oilers!

          • TheoForever

            You miss understood, 10 years of suck, lucky playoff appearance and this year miss again.
            That’s 12 years. We are dealing here from the start of decade of suck. Get on with the program.

          • Mr. J

            That’s quite the stat tho is it not? You speak of the decade of darkness and yet in that time the flames accomplished what? 1 series win!!!!! Bet you were you in pre school the last time the flames won in Anaheim

          • TheoForever

            There is an entire generation of coiler fans that experienced playoffs for the first time last year.
            We did have some good regular seasons, while you guys were out of the running by the end of october. So, when we were enjoying some good hockey, you were just planning draft parties and coming up with best tanking strategies. You guys are the owners of historically the worst suck in pro-sports. You have been humiliated and dragged naked through the gutter for 10 years, and that is priceless. And guess what, back to the gutter you are going back. Coiler regression in less than 2 months, book it.

        • Off the wall

          If we were without Brouwer, this would be so much easier.

          I wonder if being exposed at expansion draft will expedite his ass outta here. Maybe he’s pissed, you know he was wearing the Alternate Captain letter and basically we said you’re not good enough to keep around. If he doesn’t slot in above 4th line, maybe he asks for a trade and we give him away for whatever we can get for him…

  • Matty Franchise Jr

    Gaudreau – Monahan – Ferland
    Jankowski – Backlund – Frolik
    Tkachuk – Bennett – Versteeg
    Lazar – Stajan – Brouwer
    F. Hamilton – Foo

    Giordano – Hamilton
    Brodie – Hamonic
    Kulak – Stone

    Re: Iginla. As they say on Letterkenney, Hard no.

  • Off the wall

    Just for the fun of it here’s my lines:

    Johnny- Monahan- Neal/ FA
    Frolik- Backlund- Jankowski
    Tkachuk- Bennett- Ferland
    Versteeg – Stajan- Lazar
    F. Hamilton- Foo

    We get rid of Brouwer, via trade with LV… I don’t care how it’s done, plus it’s my wish.

    That 3rd line would be mean and ugly, something we desperately need!

    • madjam

      First line with truculence from Ferland . Second line with truculence from Tkachuk . Third and fourth line can rotate . 3rd- Youth with speed and feistiness .4th- the veteran line . The two extras are youth that can rotate in when plausible .

  • Albertabeef

    This is what I’ve been tinkering with.

    Johnny Mony Ferly
    Mangiapane Bennett Versteeg
    Janks Stajan Brower
    Hamilton Lazar

    JH SM Foo
    Ferly Benny Versteeg
    Janks Stajan Brouwer Hamilton/Lazar

    JH Mony Foo
    Ferly Benny Chucky
    Janks Backs Froto
    Lomb Stajan Versteeg
    Brouwer Lazar

    JH Benny Foo
    Ferly Mony Versteeg

    Jh Mony Foo
    Mang Benny Phillips
    Chucky Backs Frolik
    Lomb Janks Ferly

    JG Mony Ferly
    Phillips Backs Frolik
    Mangiapane Benny MT
    Lomberg Janks Foo

  • BlueMoonNigel

    Ha Ha Ha! I see the great Iginla sneaking into Taylor’s top line.

    While I would not slot him that highly, except on the occasional PP, he would fit in that lineup very nicely. Thank you and good night.

  • Sincity1976




  • Carl the tooth

    Thought on mangiapane and klimchuck? I could see dube and klimchuck being a future pk specialists and they would both be great on the forcheck .where are these guys with in 2 years klimchuck/mangiapane/Dube?

  • Carl the tooth

    If I don’t get atleast 50% of the threads on this post I’m gonna be pis_ed !! This is Carl the tooth !! Signing off …my work here is done! Puckhead is taking over all questions revert to him he’s my knight guy ! ( I’m gonna sleep off this possible hangover) lol

  • Despo

    Gaudreau – Monahan – Ferland
    Jankowski/Shinkaruk – Backlund – Frolik
    Tkachuk – Bennett – Versteeg
    Lazar – Stajan – Brouwer
    F. Hamilton

    Giordano – D. Hamilton
    Brodie – Hamonic
    Wotherspoon – Stone


    GG should split the 3M and give Backs and Frolik another Rookie to develop. Janko and Shinkaruk should be NHL ready, Klimchuk is my dark horse.
    Tkachuk and Bennett worked out good in last years pre-season, they should be reunited to build up some chemistry for the upcoming years.
    Personally I would like to see Foo in the mix, but he should start at the AHL level to get used to the pro game. Maybe he will be the first player called up.
    Just my 2 cents…..

  • DeepPlayoffPushPriceless

    @carl the tooth. Legion of doom line?? Lindros 6’4″ 240
    Leclair. 6’3″ 235
    Renberg 6’2 235
    I don’t think your line of Tkachuk 6’1″ 200, Ferland 6’2″ 225, and Bennett the smurf qualify to be the next legion of doom.

    • Carl the tooth

      For one Tkachuks only 19 lots of time to grow check his dads weight and tell me if he could be on the legion. I think ferlund qualified.and bennet last i Checked was dropping people 30-40 pounds over his weight(Ryan johanson, trouba , etc . Fine I think line of wrath suits them better anyway.

  • madjam

    Time for FN to do something about the awful Public Art around the city . What an embarrassment to your fair city . Calgary’s Bloom,Travelling Light and Bowfort Towers are not exactly pleasing to the public .

  • Bawcos

    Can we as Flame fans please stop hating or comparing ourselves to the Oilers? I get it, we’re rivals, but there are 29 other teams in the league. They’re good. They along with ANA are the team to beat in the division (LA should not be forgotten about). They have Connor, high end Fs, good G, deep if not spectacular D-men. They are good…. Let’s worry about CGY.
    My prediction for opening night…
    Gaudreau – Monahan – Ferland
    Tkachuck – Backlund – Frolik
    Shinkaruk – Bennett – Versteeg
    Poirier – Stajan/Lazar – Brouwer
    D-men the same
    I put Shinkaruk and Poirier there over Janko and Foo due to readiness, position and waiver exempt.