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Photo Credit: Candice Ward-USA TODAY Sports

A Flames forward prospect has real potential to make for an exciting lineup

With Troy Brouwer’s tenure in Calgary over, the Flames didn’t just get cap space: they gained a roster spot, too. And with only 11 forward spots really guaranteed, the door has opened for someone else to become a regular presence in the lineup.

The question of who that should be will become apparent over the course of training camp; the question of just where in the lineup he’ll ultimately end up could take a lot longer.

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Once again, let’s kick things off with a mock lineup (including shot handedness):

Gaudreau (L) Monahan (L) Neal (L)
Tkachuk (L) Backlund (L) Lindholm (R)
Bennett (L) Ryan (R) Frolik (L)
? Jankowski (L) Czarnik (R)
Lazar (R) Hathaway (R)

I’m counting Curtis Lazar and Garnet Hathaway as the team’s extras by default, as not only has the team sunk cost in them, but they also do have a fair bit of NHL experience, whether they can amount to much more than occasional fourth liners be damned. And especially because, should a prospect make the roster, you’re going to want someone who still has potential to actually get an opportunity, and that won’t come by watching games.

That leaves only three right shots who project to be regulars at this stage, all new to the team (though they’re of higher quality than the previous ones). Right-shot prospects who have a chance at establishing themselves in camp are Spencer Foo and Glenn Gawdin. Give the advantage to Foo as he’s coming in with a year’s worth of professional experience, including actual NHL games played (albeit meaningless ones at the end of the season).

Left-shot prospects who will likely push for a spot include Dillon Dube, Yasin Ehliz, Andrew Mangiapane, Morgan Klimchuk, and Hunter Shinkaruk. There are more left shots with professional experience – particularly Ehliz, Shinkaruk, and Klimchuk – but ultimately, none of these seven potential regulars have much in the way of actual NHL experience.

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And it’s the kids without as much professional play – Mangiapane, Foo, and Dube – who are perhaps the most exciting.

Also exciting: the fourth line is no longer automatically a spot for low-offence players to grind away by default. Matt Stajan was solid in a defensive role as his contract played out, but also a player the team couldn’t exactly count on to set up or score, particularly this past season. So when, say, Mangiapane was called up to play 10 games in the NHL, and he spent most of his time playing alongside Stajan and Lazar, it wasn’t surprising he failed to put up any points: who was he supposed to rely on to help him score?

By adding Derek Ryan to the mix, best case scenario, the Flames have completely removed any semblance of a grinding line. That only comes back if three regular forwards not only fail to hit career averages, but completely bottom out to career-worst seasons (and if Czarnik doesn’t pan out). It’s not a guarantee things will go well this season, but not only has the team built up their forward depth to decrease their chances of another collapse, but they’ve built it up so that whichever prospect makes the team actually has a chance to make an impact. Every line should have enough talent to score.

Let’s note there’s potential for upward mobility for a prospect, as well. If, say, Bennett can’t find his footing while the prospect takes off, then Bennett could find himself on the fourth line and the prospect up to the third line. If the prospect proves to be extremely adept defensively, maybe he gets a shot on Mikael Backlund’s line. If, say, James Neal sputters while the prospect is heating up, maybe he gets a shot on the top line.

There are a lot of variables at play here that makes the future lineup difficult to predict – particularly the most pressing of all, just which prospect it is that should make the team and hopefully become a regular – but there’s a good chance that there isn’t just little deadweight amongst the 12 regular forwards, but it’ll be a group that can keep pushing one another to be better.

And, presumably, at least eight of those regulars will be 25 years old or younger to start the season. It’s a young group, most of which is already established, and one that no longer seems to be relying on multiple players to have career seasons in order to have success. Seven predicted regulars will also be homegrown; eight if we include Hathaway.

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And while one can never predict injuries, the Flames also may have helped themselves with such a young group. This past season Flames fell apart when Kris Versteeg, a player with an extensive injury history (who just recently signed in the KHL), was lost, and were hurt further when Jaromir Jagr’s body finally gave out. It’s still probable someone in the lineup will get hurt and the Flames’ depth will be tested, but that likelihood may have lessened now.

We’ll see how things actually end up shaking out, especially once the optimism of the offseason fades and actual results start to come in within the next two months. But this time around, there’s good reason for optimism. This forward group doesn’t just have potential to be exciting for 2018-19, but for well beyond that.


  • Getpucksdeep

    I think Frolik can play either wing FWIW. Czarnik is not a lock IMHO just because he has a little richer contract. No ones seen Dube play against pro’s however he was a standout against his peers at the world juniors and captain of the team to boot. If 1-2 guys make it my money’s on Foo and Dube. Mangiapane is too vanilla and has to show some flair or drive. AHL stats are just that…AHL stats.

    • First Name Unidentified

      While I agree with you on Dube and Foo, what makes Mangiapane a vanilla?
      At one point, he was one of the best forwards in the entire AHL. Of the three you mention, Mangi has the best chance to make the team.

      • Getpucksdeep

        Whether Mangiapane played with Stajan is irrelevant. 6 shots in 10 games. In comparison Foo took 16 shots in 4 games. I enjoy turning the sound off during games and letting players jump out at me. Its just my opinion and the coaches may have more interest in the 200 foot game, but Foo stood out, Mangiapane I just didn’t notice. Stajan or not he didn’t drive play anymore than Hathaway and Lazar. Hathaway and Lazar at least bang and crash a bit while they’re not scoring or getting chances. If Dube’s audition doesn’t see a few scoring chances created then he’ll need AHL time as well. The AHL has dozens of examples of guys who scored well down there and in the big show didn’t carry that on. Mangiapane could make the club however he better produce something in the pre season. He’s no Jankowski while Foo just might be another Jankowski.

        • fumanchu1968

          I agree that the eye test with Foo was excellent. I want him to be on that right wing with Janko and Bennet. My eye test with Mangy was that he has a ton of talent but he was not playing on the 1st line, like Foo was, and so he wasn’t really given a fair chance to showcase his offensive talents. Either player will be a good NHLer and my preference would be to see both of them in the starting lineup.

      • Redleader

        BecaUse Mangy was just skating up and down the Ice in his 10 NHL games did nothing to impress but be decent positioning but did not show any puck drive what so ever ……so far

      • Demeo8

        Mangi is gunna have to find some JG moves to be successful at the nhl level dube held his own last preseason and was one of the last cuts dube is defintaly better than mangi. That was proved last preseason lol

        • Jumping Jack Flash

          Dube and Mangi are totally different players. I don’t see Dube being able to score a lot at this level. On the other hand, Mangi seems to have all the offensive instincts. If the role of a fourth liner is to forecheck aggressively with little offensive production…. Dube is the guy. But if the fourth line needs to chip in then Mangi wins.

    • FL?MES

      Brouwer was vanilla. Mangiapane is a mucker and will do whatever it takes to win puck battles. He’s got attitude and grit, both something that we need in our roster.

      • Justeen Trudope

        Foo benefited from playing meaningless games at the end of the year where he was able to play with some good linemates. Mangi was givin strictly 4th line rolls. I’m not sure he’s going to be the type of player that drives the play but if he can be a complimentary player I think he has the finish and the guts to play in the NHL.
        Dube is a beast the only way I see him not on the team is if the contract situation forces him down like it did Jankowski last year. This is the first time in years camp could really be interesting with battles in all 3 areas of the team.

        • MDG1600

          I like Dube but he would benefit from a year in the AHL where he can polish his offence at the pro level. I think he is candidate to fall in to the trap that Babcock talks about where a player gets rushed in to the NHL to quickly, has trouble generating offence, loses confidence and ends up being a career 4 th liner. Dube has a Fantastic motor but could use some polish on finishing the chances he creates.

    • Jeremy

      I would too, but the BUSINESS of hockey will likely get in the way.
      Simply by not letting them play allows the Flames not to need to protect them in the upcoming Expansion Draft.
      Tre’ is no dummy. He knows what he has.

  • TheWheeze

    Hardly think Neal will stumble. I, like many really want Lazar to find his mojo but I think in the end he simply won’t pan out. Don’t blame Tre it was a good gamble, he had every reason to think Lazar would take off. Maybe under Peters but who knows. Klimchuk needs a serious audition instead of a shift here and a shift there. It’s time to decide if he’s a Flame or not. Period. I like the kid though. Give him a decent chance. Let Peters and Ward have a crack at him. I think he really has potential.

    • Kevin R

      For the first time in years I think Rebar has the ability to ice 4 lines that are capable of attacking in waves, pressuring the other teams D & creating havoc & high scoring chances. If you can get this style to click, it’s infectious & the lines feed off of each other. I saw it in 2004 & the Flames just went after the opposition, line after line. Last year, our forecheck was a joke & I think stats showed we were one of the easiest teams for the opposition to breakout of their zone & enter our zone. Our guys seemed too concerned about getting back & into their box formation to defend.

  • Off the wall

    Does anyone think that Rebar (Peters’) is going to have theme dress up – team building train rides this season? …Or have a beer with the boys
    Or have a mural of Mount Everest on the wall, which the players mistakenly thought was Banff?

    Any guess how he handles team building?

    • Off the wall

      Ok let’s put it this way.
      GG was the Gimmick Guru.
      Let’s be friends, except when the press is around.. then I’ll throw a stick. And swear 55 times..

      Let’s play dress-up. Cuz that’ll bring us together?
      Versteeg- “ I’m going to be Al Capone!
      Brouwer- “Aww, I wanted to be him “
      GG- “You can both be Al Capone”

      Versteeg- “F you GG”

      Present day training camp:
      Rebar- “get your asses moving boys or you’ll be sitting on the bench! Oh yeah, don’t mind the nails on the bench, you’ll get accustomed to it”

      Wanna play dress-up?
      “Ok, I’m the Colonel, you’re my little roosters. Better make some cock -a – doodle noise or I’ll bread and fry you!”

      Somebody get me my Rebar pepperoni. I just ate this one..

      Enough said..

    • HAL MacInnis

      Peters did mention the trip to China being a blessing in disguise. He basically said he is going to take advantage of a week being stuck together and turn that into something positive for the boys, especially as it’s before the season starts.

      I think it was some baseball movie in which the coach would remove a square to reveal a woman, bit by bit, with each win the team got. I’m thinking the same thing, but in reverse with a picture of Gulutzan. With each loss, a piece of Gulutzan’s silky, luxurious hair is revealed. Now I don’t know about you guys, but that would be all the motivation I’d need to never lose a game again. Would you want to come to work each day with that mug looking at you in the locker room? Might even be a perfect season record with this strategy employed.

      I had chills go up my spine writing this… and some vomit just came up in my mouth.

    • piscera.infada

      That cliche “team building” stuff is prevalent in some form or another in every organization in the league. We hear about the Flames (and Leafs) doing it simply because it writes narratives in the market (and because, well, Leafs…). Just because GG let the guys dress up for a train ride (or gave them a beer cooler during a train ride) means absolutely nothing about the quality of his coaching–good or bad.

  • BringtheFire 2.O

    The forward line up is missing leadership. Needs another veteran player over 30. Bring back Stajan for 1 year, put him on the wing. The room needs its “nice Guy”.

  • Demeo8

    Mangi is gunna have to find some JG moves to be successful at the nhl level dube held his own last preseason and was one of the last cuts dube is defintaly better than mangi. That was proved last preseason lol

    • mrroonie

      Neither Dube nor Mangi was anywhere close to making the NHL squad out of camp and to think that one was better than the other based on when they were sent down is quite the reach. Mangi had played the previous season in Stockton so the coaches knew what they had with him. Dube played junior the year before, where there weren’t coaches from the Flames system that would see him every day, and was heading back to Kelowna. Keeping him around for one more preseason game gave them one more chance to look at him.

      • Still no edit button?

        Well I wouldn’t say dube playing a pre season game and the coaching staff saying they were very impressed with him is not even close to making. He really pushed their decision but it was best to send him down. I think he was one of the best at camp last year.

  • WidemansAnger

    In the short sample we seen of all these prospects Foo looked the most NHL ready in my opinion. Mangiapane put up great number in the AHL but seemed loke he didn’t finish translating his game yet. I don’t know where Dube will sit after training camp but based on the interviews I seen from Foo he seems the most ambitious and determined. Attitude is everything and he defiantly has got it! I think Foo has got this spot but if one of the others prove me wrong I won’t complain!!! I am counting down the days to preseason games… come on already!!

    • FL?MES

      I think Foo would do well on a top line with more offensive zone starts and scoring opportunities. I’m uncertain about his 200 foot game though and not sure how he would show in a limited 4th line role with less talented teammates. I’ve pigeonholed him as a sniper in my mind but maybe there’s something more to his game.

    • FlamesFanOtherCity

      TBH, I can;t even tell you what role Mangiapane played when he was here. His first shift in his first game, he gets a partial breakaway with another player and gets a scoring chance. I think he was playing with Brouwer on that shift. After that game of 4th line minutes, he did play a bit with Janko and perhaps Hathaway or Brouwer, but the shifts were nothing special. One thing to note about Bread-eater is that he thinks he’s a bigger player and mucks around in the corners. Fine, but he needs to learn how to play that way in the NHL.

      Depending on what Peters thinks a 4th line is, you could see guys like Hathaway and Lazar demoted with the likes of Quine, Foo, Ehliz, Dube making the push. Lazar and Hathaway are not really any more successful at the NHL level than Quine.

  • Jimmyhaggis

    I hope Hathaway and Lazar move on, both contribute very little offensively, crash and bang players are dead weight now, you can’t tell me the Flames can’t dress 12 players who can provide offense.

    • FL?MES

      Still don’t know why they cut Shore. I would feel more comfortable with him as an extra forward over Hathaway or Lazar. That said, I don’t believe Shore has been claimed by another team yet. If so, this makes me wonder if Hathaway or Lazar would get claimed.

        • Kevin R

          It’s funny how several people on FN get high on players just because some corsi numbers are ok but Shore will be lucky to get a PTO. Funny how 31 GM’s dont agree with all the Shore positivity. JMO.
          He was ok but our bottom 6 was horrible, so no wonder he looked ok. Personally, I would rather let Klimchuk, Foo, Magpie, Dube fight for that spot. At least they have higher ceiling than Shore. I just think Shore doesnt have much more of a ceiling & the other GM’s probably see the same thing.

          • The Doctor

            You’re totally right that there’s no more upside to Shore. And if we want to compete with the likes of Vegas, it ain’t gonna be with guys like Shore. It’ll be with guys like Dube, Foo, Neal etc.

      • Getpucksdeep

        I think after not making a statement of any kind in LA or here management just decided our prospect pool has more to offer. Shore’s not bad really but he has had 4 seasons to “break out” and if he’s a career 4th liner then no reason to invest in him. Just a guess of course.

          • everton fc

            Shore wouldn’t sign for $650K. Someone will pick him up for the same price tag as Hathaway, at some point. As another person here posted, 31 teams have look past Shore. The fact the Flames got him for a 7th, and got Lazar for a 2nd, is indeed madness.

            Hathaway, to me, is a better for our team, than Lazar. So my comparison, more apples-to-apples, would be Lazar vs. Shore. One could make a case that we are overpaying Lazar, @ 950K/AVV, vs. Shore, at the same price.

            Lazar is on his last year @950K. If he has a poor, or even average camp, and a kid like Klimchuk or Mangiapane or Foo “breaks out”, Lazar could find himself on the waiver-wire. But, ideally, kids like the aforementioned trio, need ice time. None should be an extra-forward, particularly Mangiapane and Foo. Klimchuk would be the best to serve that purpose, if he has a good camp. But Hathaway and Lazar are the best bets for those two extra forward spots, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Hathaway is LW w/Jankowski and Czarnik, in camp. Not saying I approve – and I do like Hathaway’s game more than many here. But he and Jankowski do have chemistry.

            Could Mangiapane-Jankowski-Hathaway be the 4th line, if Czarnik has a bad camp? Could Czarnik and Lazar be the extra forwards?? We shall see…

  • SgtRoadBlock

    i hope by next year 2/ 6 of the players on this list r gone for kids to crack the roster..
    Fro
    Ryan
    Hathaway
    Backland
    LaZer
    Real Deal

    Side note: no more over 29 ufa or Bryout will come back lol

  • Fan the Flames

    It looks like the pieces are in place to ice four solid lines . The coaching staff will need to put the combinations together for maximum results and have special teams in the top ten in the league to be considered a contender.

  • Baalzamon

    The more I think about it, the more I think it has to be Tkachuk – Backlund – Neal. It’s just the perfect way to punish opposing teams’ scoring forwards.

    I mean really; is Neal going to have any trouble getting into the offensive zone playing with those two?

    And for people worried about #Gritchart stuff… Lindholm registers more hits, every year, than Neal does.

      • Off the wall

        I’m hoping we see Lindholm on the 1st line as well.
        That 2nd line looks lethal with Tkachuk- Backlund- Neal

        We just gotta get Gaudreau happy with the idea. He’s the one who wants Neal on his line.

        Hey Squishin, when do you start playing hockey again? Exciting times!

        • everton fc

          I don’t mind Tkachuk-Backlund-Neal.

          Hathaway and Lazar are the extra forwards. In that order. And I agree – Czarnik’s no guarantee, regardless of his contract, and all the promises.

          4th line LW seems the only spot up for grabs. Hathaway played there last year. Not sure Czarnik has played LW. Mangiapane’s opportunity is here. Ditto Klimchuk’s. One has to make a case for staying in Calgary.

    • Ari Yanover

      Tkachuk and Neal on the same line would definitely be a lot of fun and I’m kinda hoping it happens. Plus Lindholm on the top line gives them that right shot.

      It’s just easier to slot Neal up there for now because he’s got the pedigree Lindholm doesn’t have quite yet – and there are so many potential combinations, so I’m just trying to keep things as simple as possible before training camp starts!

        • First Name Unidentified

          Maybe the D zone face off is taken by Backs, Ryan and Chucky. Once the puck is won and is in the O zone Neil can replace Ryan. I’m sure Backs will have no problem driving pucks north but Neil has almost never had large counts of D zone starts. Backs is a stud in driving possession, I’m aware of that, even McD has trouble doing any damage when he’s on the ice.

          • First Name Unidentified

            Let’s just say I’ll be very nervous every time Neil is in his own zone. That’s despite saying I believe he will score 25 goals with Johnny. Johnny is the best playmaker on the team and Neil is the best sniper, besides Monahan.

    • SgtRoadBlock

      how Dare you talk bad about Backland here on this site…. lol

      stick to your guns ww on Backland.. people will open up soon

      Like i did when i told them about the deer need to be traded and they laugh oh did they laugh…
      But then plot twist he did get traded..and they turn like turn coats and tar and feather the Deer lol good old days

    • FL?MES

      Backs is going to light it up if he’s put with Tkachuk and Neal. This will not be a shut down line, rather it will be a line other teams struggle to shut down.

      I don’t see any problem here. Move on…

    • Brian McGrattan's Salute

      Give it a rest…backlund will get 50 pts this year. Hes a great playmaker, and will have a great season, especially if he plays with offensively talented people on his wings in a role that isn’t just shutdown.

    • Getpucksdeep

      I mentioned my penchant for watching games with the sound off. Great skaters stand out. I like watching Backlund both carry the puck up ice and then watching him get back and be where he needs to be down deep on defense. He skates tall with a long stride and he can fly. He uses his wheels both ways all the time. I don’t think he’s holding Tkachuk back at all. He isn’t the playmaker we’d like but oddly neither is Monahan. JG is the clear disher on that line. Tkachuk appears to have a lot of disher in him as well. Backlund had back to back 20 goal, great 2 way seasons before last year. Both his wingers were lost during the spring and Frolik was definitely not playing well with the full face cage. For added entertainment Monahan went down late in the year and it messed up the lines even more. I think he’ll rebound and be even better if Neal or Lindholm play on his line. If you’re not a Backlund fan, so be it but even analytic freaks know he always has great possession numbers. Fun skater to watch.

    • Rockmorton65

      WW – you raise an interesting question re: Byng.

      Do you think it’s better he stay with Backlund, misuse him, keep his #’s down thereby ensuring a lower cap hit? Or put him with top players, have him break out and end up costing the Flames a fortune?

      • FL?MES

        This point was brought up last season when Tkachuk played with Backs and Fro on a shutdown line by GG. It was brought up as a joke but had some merit looking at it from the standpoint of a GM.

        From what Tre has stated thus far I think it is safe to assume that 3M will be broken up and the Flames will roll out 4 functional lines. The acquisitions of Neil and Lindholm suggests that Fro will be bumped down the lineup.

        Tkachuk will have a great season playing with Backs or Lindholm.

    • Getpucksdeep

      I’m on board with that line up being very realistic. It’s possible Foo will give Czarnik a run and he and Mangiapane could send both or either Lazar and Hathway to waiver wires as well. IMHO I agree with Ryan as 4th line C for just the reason that if all A: 4 lines are going to score a few goals and B: we want a few kids in the mix then its prudent to have experience and face off talent to go with the younger players.

      • Getpucksdeep

        Which is important to think about. Looking at the current roster that ship may have sailed. Protect 7 forwards is the deal? Backlund and Frolik seem to have the only NM NTCs. In Vegas it was all “1st and 2nd year professionals” so the draft was in the summer so Dube would not have a 3rd season or why would they spell it out as 2?…I think …and that’s if Seattle is in the league in 2 years as planned.

        • mrroonie

          The rule from 2017 states:

          “All first- and second-year professionals, as well as all unsigned draft choices, will be exempt from selection (and will not be counted toward their club’s applicable protection limits).”

          NHL contracts end at midnight on June 30, so the draft is considered to be part of the season that has just ended. This means that any player entering his first year as a pro this season will be exempt in 2020. Dube, Gawdin, Valimaki, and Phillips all fit into that category.

          Only NMCs affect a team’s protected list and there are none currently on the Flames roster.

          • mrroonie

            Clarification:

            Dube, Valimaki, and Phillips all had entry level slides this past season and are therefore considered to be entering their first year as pros. Gawdin will have 3 years and won’t be exempt.

    • Sir ryosus

      I would like to see fro on 4th line and pk. He has shown what he brings offensively and not sure he can push janko and Bennett to next level. Would try cyzanik on 3rd if he shows well in camp

  • Intercourse the Penguins

    Doesn’t Lindholm play centre and have a good winning face off record? If so I would like to see him take draws on his right dot and Mony on the left dot. 2 strong options on the draw if one gets tossed as well.

  • Jobu

    is Dube already eligible for the Seattle expansion based on his age? If not then Jobus money is on Mangiapane and will keep Dube in the AHL to make him exempt.

  • Stockton's Finest

    For what’s it worth, here is my 2 cents.

    Based on play last year, and some off- the-ice situations, I think Foo grabs that 4th line spot over Mangiapane.

    Foo regularly crashed the net looking for those greasy goals. Mangiapane goes there occasionally, but needs to add some weight in order to not get pushed around.

    I think Mangiapane has a little better shot from the point: he tends to look for his spot, where Foo shoots just to shoot. Foo is constantly looking for the tip or rebound in front where Mangiapane scores from outside.

    Foo would be better on a 4th line to start and work his way up lines, while Mangiapane needs Top 9 minutes.

    Lastly, I think the Flames will be cautious with Mangiapane based on last season’s surgery. They want to protect him a bit before bringing him up.

  • The GREAT WW

    CHIARELLI gets a lot of criticism on this site but I have to admit he is the best GM at managing the expansion drafts.

    When he came to the Oilers he was saddled with a decade of first over all picks, but only managed to lose Reinhardt to Vegas!!!!

    When the Seattle expansion happens, once again the Oilers will not lose a NHL player, in fact; he only has 3 forwards worth protecting!!!!

    Hats off to CHIARELLI…..just giving credit where credit is due….

    WW

    • Jumping Jack Flash

      It is a little early to punt on Ryan without seeing him on this team. He was selected to the US World Championship squad and performed well. I don’t want him taking Janko 3C spot but am fine with him as 3RW or 4C.

      • The GREAT WW

        The expansion draft isn’t tomorrow…..2 good years with the Flames and Ryan will be seen as a great veteran leader with one year left on his contract.
        Perfect home town feel good story pick up for Seattle.

        WW

  • Great Wall of Kipru

    I must say I look at many of the other nations pages and I haven’t seen one like ours I’m not sure if we all realize what we are contemplating of the squad we have its awesome to see it is such an improvement is almost an understatement we are all worried about things that I gaurentee fail in comparison that we have had to worry about in a while although some very good, very liked players left the only thing that comes to mind is the future we have… treliving is almost done if not this year from internal growth. It will be next year because he has shown his will to win and as far as everything goes I fear this do or die time if we can become what we think we are there’s no way there will any problems with this arena at least I’d like to hope anyways just remember even though there is doubt I and I’m sure you believe that this is the start of an amazing time for the flames we got tkachuckers for ores sake!! Not to mention moneyhands johnny hockey and whatnot sorry for the rant lucky was tasting good tonight

  • freethe flames

    So I’ve been away for a couple of weeks and what has happened in that time. No contract for Hanifin. No contract for Tkachuk. No contract for Shinakruk. No trade of Stone. Articles written about our prospects, Stockton’s Finest two articles that I enjoyed and nothing about the trip to China. When I went away we were discussing the possible line combinations and debating which of the prospects had the best chance of making the squad out of camp and what is this article about; the same thing. My thoughts remain the same: we need two lines that will be high end offensively but still defensively responsible and two lines that are defensively responsible but create their own offense and I see 10 forwards who are capable of playing in the traditional top 9 roles and the other 4 spots on the team going to be a dog fight between: Lazar, Hathaway, Foo, Mangiapanel, Czarnik and Dube. I can’t wait for camp to start to see what BP comes up with.

    • Getpucksdeep

      Seriously? Or are you just mixing it up for discussion? Eliz based on his scoring feats in Germany???? Robinson? Klimchuk outside chances maybe but I don’t see Eliz or Robinson at all. Defintely AHL bound IMHO.

  • Great Wall of Kipru

    Well toews best offensive season was 68 points and although he was over point per game in the offseason shouldn’t we be a little bit optimistic even though Monahan doesn’t have his defence and backlund doesn’t have his presence but we got a lot more because of not trying to follow the penguins outline I feel we have gone for a little bit of a Blackhawks blueprint and heck it worked for them I know I’m a glass half full kinda guy but what the heck

    • Getpucksdeep

      I agree there’s some similarities between the Flames build and the Hawks from a few years ago. We have Gio who’s a Kieth/Seabrook class player and good depth on defense, something Edmonton and Toronto don’t have.