The Flames have done a serious overhaul so far this season. With so many new players added into the mix, there’s plenty of things to consider: who was given up, how everyone will mesh together, and, of course, the most important thing of all: what number everyone will wear.
It’s been mostly the forward group that’s gained new additions. With that, say goodbye to Micheal Ferland’s #79, and hello to:
- #10 Derek Ryan
- #18 James Neal
- #27 Austin Czarnik
- #28 Elias Lindholm
The defence got a pretty big tweaking, as well. Farewell to Dougie Hamilton’s #27 – so quickly replaced – and welcome:
- #55 Noah Hanifin
The number 10 doesn’t have a particularly great recent history on a Flames jersey. Ryan taking the number was easy to see coming – it’s what he wore in
Carolina Charlotte, in the AHL; in Carolina, he most recently wore #7 (unavailable) and #33 before that (also unavailable) – and with that, we bid goodbye to Kris Versteeg, the last Flame to take that number.
Before Versteeg, the Flames bestowed #10 to the short-lived Corban Knight experiment. And before that, the short-lived Roman Cervenka experiment. And before that, Blake Comeau. And Niklas Hagman. And Brian McGrattan, in the first go-around.
Here’s to hoping Ryan wears the number better than the recent lot – though Versteeg wasn’t bad, just unfortunately not healthy.
Neal has worn #18 throughout his career. Of course he’d get it in Calgary.
We already knew Matt Stajan wasn’t returning to the Flames, but his former number won’t be left cold. Stajan wore it throughout his entire Flames tenure, from 2010-18. Before him, it was Matt Lombardi. This makes Neal the first non-Matt to wear #18 for the Flames in 14 years.
Czarnik wore #27 when he was with the Bruins, and now, he’s immediately taking over for another former Bruin-turned-Flame who also wore #27. Before Hamilton, it was Sven Baertschi’s number; before Baertschi, the likes of Derek Smith and Steve Staios wore it.
It’s kind of interesting that Czarnik immediately got a lower number, but the Flames seem to have big plans for him right off the bat, so him retaining his old number only makes sense in this case. Hopefully the Flames will finally have a #27 they’ll actually appreciate.
Lindholm had #28 in Carolina, so of course he’ll have #28 in Calgary.
The number has been sparsely worn in Calgary: Emile Poirier had it briefly, and Corey Potter before him, and Lane MacDermid before him. That trio combined for nine total games with the number.
Other than those three spot-starters, the number is most associated with Robyn Regehr, who had it claimed from 2000-11. It looks like #28 will be back in the Flames’ regular rotation for the first time in seven years.
Hanifin wore #5 with the Hurricanes. Mark Giordano is still wearing #5 with the Flames, so obviously, that wasn’t going to fly.
Enter the next logical replacement: #55, which Hanifin has worn while representing America on the international stage.
The last player to wear #55 for the Flames was John Ramage, for all of one game. Prior to Ramage, it was Shane O’Brien. So it’s a pretty low recent history bar for Hanifin to clear.
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