The Calgary Flames knocked it out of the park with a well-rounded draft class

Photo credit:Jenn Pierce/Calgary Hitmen
Mike Gould
23 days ago
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What a difference one strong draft can make.
Just imagine if the Calgary Flames can do this again in 2025 and 2026.
The Flames first entered the Sphere in Las Vegas on Friday with nine selections in the 2024 NHL Draft. They exited with 10 new prospects, including a much-needed blue-chipper on defence, and suddenly have one of the strongest pools of future talent in the entire league.
Consider the following: Calgary still has two first-round selections in each of the next two draft years. They have multiple 2025 second-round picks and 2026 third-round picks. They’re only just getting started.
The Flames picked No. 9 overall this year. They have yet to play a full season without the seven players they have subtracted from their organization over the last 12 months. Given the extent to which they have committed to this teardown, they appear to be in a prime position to make their first-ever top-three draft selection in 2024.
But even now, arguably less than a year into their rebuild (and it is a rebuild), the Flames already have an excellent collection of young talent that certainly features multiple future NHL players.
The Flames hit a grand slam on Day 2 of this year’s draft. They picked Calgary kid Andrew Basha, who many wanted with the No. 28 pick, all the way down at No. 41; after that, they landed public scouting favourites in Jacob Battaglia, Henry Mews, and Luke Misa far lower than many expected them to go.
TSN’s Bob McKenzie ranked Basha at No. 30, Mews at No. 48, Battaglia at No. 57, and Misa at No. 72. Daily Faceoff‘s Steven Ellis slotted them at No. 28, No. 38, No. 64, and No. 65, respectively.
In the end, the Flames got Mews all the way down at pick No. 74. Battaglia went to them with the No. 62 pick, while Misa had to wait until the No. 150 selection before he finally heard his name called by the Calgary table.
That kind of value is uncommon at the draft, and it gives the Flames multiple extra players who profiled as potential low first-round picks or high-second picks to many analysts. The Flames staged a coup getting those four players on top of Day 1 selections Zayne Parekh and Matvei Gridin.
Calgary’s other late-round picks are intriguing, too. Fourth-round selection Trevor Hoskin just wrapped up his third season of draft eligibility, but it was a very good one: He was named OJHL MVP after scoring 42 goals and 100 points in just 52 games with the Cobourg Cougars. Hoskin is committed to attend Niagara University next season.
Goaltender Kirill Zarubin (third round, No. 84 overall) is coming off a terrific season in which he posted a 15-7-6 record, five shutouts, and a .944 save percentage in 29 games with AKM Tula in Russia’s top junior league. The Flames have plenty of young goaltenders in their system, including Yegor Yegorov, Waltteri Ignatjew, Arsenii Sergeev, and, of course, Dustin Wolf, but the 6’4″ Zarubin is the biggest and has some of the best numbers.
Sixth-rounders Hunter Laing and Eric Jamieson are both, as FlamesNation managing editor Ryan Pike would say, big and local. Jamieson is the more local of the two, having grown up a Flames fan here in Calgary, but he’s not as big as Laing, a centre who stands in at 6’5″ and 205 pounds. The sixth round is the perfect time to take huge swings on pure physicality and athleticism, and both these guys seem to have it in spades.
Jamieson is particularly intriguing because he’s another re-entry who has already progressed as the Flames would’ve hoped if they had drafted him one year ago. The Flames already saw Cam Whynot and Cole Jordan fail to take that step forward in their D+1 seasons; now, they have a guy in Jamieson who is far less of a question mark. After scoring three goals and 13 points in 65 games in 2022-23, Jamieson improved to 10 goals and 32 points in 66 games last season. That’s great production for someone who otherwise profiles as a shutdown defender.
And remember — these are the late picks. With their other selections, the Flames addressed numerous areas of need while also reinforcing existing points of strength. Remember when the Zayne Parekh pick gave the Flames a truly elite group of puck-moving defence prospects? Well, that was true even before they added Mews, who was considered a fringe first-rounder by some after scoring 61 points in 65 games with the Ottawa 67’s in 2023-24.
Misa is only 5’10”, but he’s a much-needed centre prospect for this Flames team and offers a highly intriguing combination of speed and skill. His younger brother, Michael, is projected to be a top-five pick in next year’s draft. The Flames have already united the Parekhs — will they do the same with the Misa brothers?
Battaglia and Basha are two high-scoring wingers who could help fill out the Flames’ middle-six forward group in years to come. Basha is another Calgary kid who rose to the occasion with the Medicine Hat Tigers in his draft year while No. 4 pick Cayden Lindstrom missed time to injury; Battaglia was a goal-scoring machine with the Kingston Frontenacs, especially in the latter half of the season.
It’s been a long, long time since the Flames assembled a draft class with this much promise. Long gone are the years of Topi Ronni being this team’s only pick in the first four rounds. The Flames have earned rave reviews from numerous onlookers for their performance at this year’s draft, and you can count this as another one.
Up next: Development Camp, the Stampede, and a much-needed off-season break. Enjoy it all, Flames fans.

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