14Cam Talbot
Photo Credit: Eric Hartline/USA Today Sports

Cam Talbot can’t wait for September

After the better part of four seasons spent in Edmonton, it’s almost fitting that Cam Talbot’s official unveiling as a member of the Calgary Flames came during Stampede Week. Talbot made the trek down Highway 2 to check out the city and met with local media on Sunday morning at Winsport.

Talbot repeatedly expressed his excitement for the chance to play on a Flames team that finished second overall in 2018-19.

“You look at the group and what they were able to accomplish last year,” said Talbot. “The core of this team is only going to get better. They have got a good group of young players and great leadership, so i think it’s an appealing spot for any goaltender to want to play. I’m really fortunate to have landed here.”

After playing in a couple markets with defensive groups that were, to be polite, works in progress, it’s obviously appealing to Talbot to play behind an impressive defensive group in Calgary. Reigning Norris Trophy winner Mark Giordano anchors the blueline group and drew praise from Talbot.

“Anytime you can play behind a Norris Trophy winner,” said Talbot. “And obviously he’s the backbone of this team and drives this team, so I’ve heard nothing but good things about Gio and his leadership abilities and also he complements a lot of the young guys, too. Like I said, it’s a very deep team and I’m looking forward to being a part of it.”

Speaking with the media at Winsport, Flames general manager Brad Treliving elaborated on the process that eventually led to the club honing in on Talbot during the courting period. The process really began after the season ended and the team took stock of where they wanted to go.

“Part of it’s not just about who you’re going to get, but what you have,” said Treliving. “How can we build it? You know, we’ve talked about it here for so long about growing one of your own. So to me, it’s how do you create that path to give David [Rittich] the best opportunity to grow and mature and move forward? So that was a part of it. Then you look at the options out there. We spent a lot of time on it. You can want them, they gotta want you too, so then you get into the talking period and go through that process. So, how long did it take? We formulated a plan once the season ended and sort of brought it into action once the talking period started.”

The goaltending plan for 2019-20 seems to be the Flames using a tandem of Talbot and Rittich, with each player pushing each other to grow their game. That plan seems like music to Talbot’s ears as he seeks to put a painful 2018-19 campaign behind him.

“I’m looking forward to meeting David and to just complement him,” said Talbot. “He’s a good young goaltender. Like you said, he took his game to another level last year, had a heck of a season, just coming in here and to compete and push each other to be better, and looking forward to being a part of that tandem.”

With the Rangers, Oilers and Flyers, Talbot wore 33. He wore the same jersey number in college, too. He’s not sure what number he’ll wear with the Flames, but he says it won’t be 33.

“We’ve thrown around a few ideas,” said Talbot. “Obviously David’s got 33, so I haven’t decided on anything just yet. Haven’t worn anything other than that in the last 13 years, so it’s going to take some time to decide… I think I’ll just go and pick a different number.”

Responding to a media question, Talbot noted that a year ago he wouldn’t have anticipated that he’d be in the position that he’s presently in – preparing to tend to the twine on the southern side of the Battle of Alberta. But he seems up to the challenge.

“It’s kind of an odd feeling coming down Highway 2 and coming to play on the other side of the Battle of Alberta, but it’s also an exciting time,” said Talbot. “We’re looking forward to being part of this group, my family is looking forward to being part of this community, and can’t wait for September.”

  • freethe flames

    Have a good off season Mr Talbbot; here’s hoping you play like Lehner did last year. Just heading to winsport to see the scrimmage. I will share my feed back later today.

  • Budgie

    Goaltending is the toughest to manage, if a goaltender has both skill and confidence like Binnington you can get hot and lead a team to a Cup. It is a mindset, confidence in your goalie. Behind Binnington is Allen, what the heck happened to Allen? He was hot a few years ago and then? Calgary landed Elliott because Allen was hot-the future, Elliot was solid-great stats-what happened to Elliott? They all have talent to play in the NHL. A fresh start is exactly what a goaltender needs sometimes to rebuild that confidence and team mindset. A solid defense and back-checking forwards will help Talbot succeed on the Flames.

  • Flaming Duck

    It would be interesting to be in the room when Loch and Smith meet. That last game of the season two years ago when Loch walked all over the Flames and Smith had to defend himself. Ironically, team toughness is still our biggest concern.

    • wot96

      Yep. And interestingly, Smith is adult enough to go to a team where he has an antagonist…and Kadri… Nope. Apparently, what happens on the ice doesn’t stay on the ice.

  • freethe flames

    Well that was interesting. There were two scrimmages this morning and they looked like this:10 minutes of 5on5, 10 minutes of 4on4, 10 minutes 3on3 and then a shoot out; followed by a flooding and then a repeat.

    Here are my thoughts; in the first 5 on 5 what I really notices was how physical it was; there were probably more finished checks this year than all the previous years I have been combined. So the first 5 on 5 no one really stood out. The two guys I noticed the most were Yelesin; he jumped into the offensive zone more than I expected and Pospisil work on the boards in the defensive zone. 4 on 4 and three on three the skaters stood out a little more but nothing that got me too excited. I was not impressed by Schneider who I thought was the weakest of the goalies through both sessions. The best shoot out goal was by Pettersen but that was the only time I noticed him in the first session.

    The second session was much better with more hits and more actual scoring chances 5 on 5. Both Pelletier and Phillips used their speed to create some goals 4 on 4. But for me the guys who really stood out in the second session were Pettersen; a couple of times he made the defenders look foolish. Both Roman and Pospisil also created chances by their continued effort on the puck I really think that the are going to like Pospisil. The other guy who created chances and scored a nice goal was Koumontzis; he also had a couple of chances created by his hard work. Feuk had a couple of nice shifts.

    My biggest disappointments were Schnieder, Gawdin and Ruzicka. Schnieder I think gave up the most goals and a number of them were from long range. Gawdin and Ruzicaka were not bad but they just did not do enough to get noticed.

    Parsons was really good and I liked the calmness and athleticism of Zagidulin. Wolf was fine and so was Rifalk.

    It was an interesting morning. nice crowd. My take away’s are that I really think Pettersen has the potential to very good, Phillips is quick and opportunistic, Pelltier has solid potential but I came away liking Pospisil more than I thought I would. Yelesin will be a good addition to the organization calm on D.

    Cheers from Free.