The season is getting closer! The opening of main camp was on Friday and this past weekend was the first chance to see everybody in the Calgary Flames organization on the ice between the games in China and sessions here for the domestic players. With camp now in full swing, we’ve convened the FlamesNation Roundtable to ponder the opening night roster.
So join myself, Ari, Christian T, Christian R, Karim, Bill, and Taylor and marvel at how wrong we’ll end up being with most of our predictions for the Oct. 3 opening night roster.
Which three forwards make the team as the fourth line left wing and the extra forwards?
Ari: Anthony Peluso, Garnet Hathaway, and I’m throwing my money behind Dillon Dube early to be the prospect to make it – though I don’t know if that means he stays the whole season. (I originally thought it might be a contest between Hathaway and Curtis Lazar as to who gets to stay up, but I’m not so sure about that anymore.)
Christian T: That last wing spot seems to be tailor-made for Andrew Mangiapane, so I’ll go with him. Although if Dillon Dube keeps up his strong play throughout camp, he has a strong chance of stealing that spot. Anthony Peluso and Garnet Hathaway are my extras.
Christian R: Andrew Mangiapane will secure the fourth LW spot, and Anthony Peluso and Garnet Hathaway will be the extra forwards, assuming there are two.
Karim: Andrew Mangiapane on the fourth line LW, with Anthony Peluso (boo) and Garnet Hathaway as extra forwards. I’m banking on Lazar getting demoted but it could be Hathaway instead.
Bill: Peluso, Hathaway, and Mangiapane. I think Lazar’s gonna start in Stockton after the rest of the preseason plays out.
Taylor: I’ll say Klimchuk fourth LW spot, Hathaway and Lazar the extra forwards though not having Peluso on there seems like wishful thinking.
Ryan: Dillon Dube, Anthony Peluso and Curtis Lazar. If they carry 13 forwards, Peluso gets the heave-ho.
Who plays with Michael Stone, and who’s the seventh defender?
Ari: Rasmus Andersson, and Brett Kulak is the extra.
Christian T: I will go bold and say that Oliver Kylington and Brett Kulak emerge as the winners in that spot, although who is six and who is seven will be resolved later in the season.
Christian R: Brett Kulak retains his spot on the third pairing and Dalton Prout stays on as the seventh defenceman. Bold prediction is that Rasmus Andersson beats out Michael Stone, who is traded before the beginning of the season.
Karim: I don’t think Michael Stone is in the team’s top six; the bottom pair will be Brett Kulak and Rasmus Andersson with Stone as the seventh making semi-frequent rotations into the lineup.
Bill: Kulak starts with Stone, Andersson starts as the seventh. Andersson might take Stone’s spot if Peters experiments with the third pairing early on in the season.
Taylor: Brett Kulak, boring choice, I just think he’s too good to leave off. Seventh defender seems like it’s going to be Prout.
Ryan: Juuso Valimaki as sixth, Brett Kulak as seventh, but Valimaki doesn’t stay the whole season.
Who’s the backup goaltender?
Ari: Jon Gillies.
Christian T: Rittich because of the waiver situation
Christian R: David Rittich, because waivers.
Karim: Backup will be David Rittich solely because of Jon Gillies’ waiver exempt status.
Taylor: Let’s say Rittich, if not solely because of the waiver situation.
Ryan: David Rittich.
And finally, which player doesn’t make the team out of camp but spends significant time on the NHL roster regardless?
Ari: Andrew Mangiapane. Maybe Dalton Prout if there are injuries on defence.
Christian T: Rasmus Andersson. The NHL right-handed Ds are pretty much set for now (albeit fingers crossed for a trade), but all three do have injury history, so there’s likely going to be a spot for him to steal at some point in the season.
Christian R: Jon Gillies, seeing as Mike Smith is 36 and averages one IR stint per season, it seems.
Karim: Dillon Dube. He’ll figure out the AHL in no time and demand a call-up like Mark Jankowski did last season. He can play all three forward positions which gives Bill Peters slotting flexibility.
Bill: One of Klimchuk or Dube up front, thinking it’ll be Prout for defence, and Gillies in net.
Taylor: Rasmus Andersson. An injury will occur and he won’t go back down.
Ryan: Morgan Klimchuk, who likely slots into a bottom six role if/when injuries pop up.