In an effort to shore up their efforts to find future National Hockey League talents in Europe, the Calgary Flames have gone back to their past. The club officially announced today that it’s hired Hakan Loob as their head European pro scout.
The second-greatest player to wear #12 for the organization, Loob was selected by the Flames in the ninth round of the 1980 NHL Draft while playing in Sweden. He made the jump to North America in 1983-84 and made his mark with a 30-goal season as a “rookie” – he was 23. He was a core piece of the powerhouse ’80s Flames teams that won many games. He became the first Swede to score 50 goals when he did it in 1987-88. He won a Stanley Cup in 1989 and, missing his home country, returned to Sweden where he played for another seven seasons.
Since retiring as a player, Loob has been involved with the Farjestads BK organization as a general manager and later as president. His hiring formalizes what was previously an ad hoc European pro scouting process where the Flames would send over somebody like Derek MacKinnon or Craig Conroy to look at specific players. Now they have somebody on the ground which should make that process a bit more robust.