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GototheFlamestotheGo

The Calgary Flames Thread - 12/13 Edition

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After an ungodly amount of waiting time, Hockey's back!

It'll be interesting to see how the Flames will respond considering the shortened season. Over the span of the past few years, they have started slowly out of the gate, been excellent during the months of Nov. to Feb, then fizzled out due to wear and tear. Will the shortened season result in less wear and tear and thus eliminate the end of season fizzle as seen in the past or will the compressed season take an even bigger toll on the team?

My projected line-ups (assuming that Cervenka and Hudler are healthy)

Tanguay - Cammalleri - Iginla

Glencross - Cervenka - Hudler

Baertschi - Backlund - Stempniak

Jackman - Stajan - Horak

Giordano - Wideman

Bouwmeester - Sarich

Brodie - Butler

Kipper

Karlsson

I think the success of this season relies heavily on how the new coaching staff approaches the game. It will hinge on whether this group is able to overcome their faceoffs issues, and whether Hartley is able to get the D engaged in the offense without sacrificing the defensive side of the game (a task that has seemed pretty much impossible for the Flames, historically).

I'm pumped! Game on!

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Sorry but Flames wont make the playoffs!!!!!!!

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I think if everyone plays to there potential you might have a good shot at the playoffs, you added in alot of area's.

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I really really wish Flames make into the playoffs and vs. Canucks in Round 1. Have been waiting for years. Since they beat us in '04.

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Baertschi will play in the top 6, and he should in Glencross' spot.

Tanguay - Cammalleri - Iginla (best chemistry)

Baertschi - Backlund - Hudler (3 players with a lot to prove, Baertschi the playmaker)

Glencross - Cervenka - Stempniak (2 defensive responsible wingers with a creative center)

Jackman - Jones - Horak (physical 4th line)

Giordano - Wideman

Bouwmeester - Butler

Brodie - Sarich

Kipper

And Kipper will probably play all 48 games

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Can't say I understand the logic behind replacing a good second line center in Jokinen with a guy who, if all goes well, could match Jokinen's production in Roman Cervenka. Unless Jokinen was asking for ridiculous money or wanted to leave, it seems like a bit of an unnecessary risk for a team trying to make the playoffs. I don't think Backlund is ready for that role either, and I have my doubts that he'll ever be a top-6 centerman.

Hudler was a really underrated pickup and I think he'll be a good top-6 forward for you guys. If I recall correctly, his production at even strength was near the best in the league considering the amount of ice-time he was getting in Detroit. Not to say he'll suddenly break out in Calgary, but I think he's a better player than most give him credit for.

In all, a solid top-9 and I wouldn't be surprised if Baertschi forces his way into the top-6 at some point in the season. Not a lot of top end talent, but a number of players who provide good scoring depth which should be enough.

Not a fan of the Wideman signing at all and I think Butler is a better fit in the top-4 than Sarich now. Not overly impressed with the defense overall but I'm interested to see how Brodie does this season. I'd be surprised if Calgary isn't in the market for a legitimate top-4 defenseman if they're in the playoff hunt at the trade deadline.

Kipper will have to stand on his head once again if the Flames have any shot at a playoff spot IMO, and while that's entirely possible, he is getting a little long in the tooth and I don't feel comfortable saying that he's a lock for another great season.

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http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/SN960/AOD/~3/4gdlgnZ-_SQ/Jay-Feaster-with-Pat-Steinberg-ps-20130106-Interview.mp3

According to that interview with Feaster, Cervenka won't be medically cleared for training camp. So that's a loss. I think Backlund will take his spot on the 2nd line, with either Sven or Glenny on his left wing. And Stajan will probably take the spot on the 3rd line.

Too bad. I wanted to see what Cervenka could do.

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Interested to see how the flames can play with what they added? I have a feeling that they actually have a chance to compete for the 8th spot. It comes down to how kipper plays and how much starts he will get get around 45 of the 48-50 games in the season or is that to much?

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I think a lot of it will depend on the schedule. If there's a lot of divisional games, then Calgary will have win the season series against the Canucks, Oilers, Wild and Avalanche. I think all of those teams made progress with their lineups, so that's no easy task for any team.

If there isn't a lot of divisional play, then it becomes much harder to predict how any team does.

I will say this though, all signs point to this being the last go for the Flames veteran core. How the team does this season should impact who is and who isn't a Flame next season. New coach, new system, no more excuses.

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meh, going to miss the playoffs they should have started a rebuild a while ago

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shortened season should favor kipper actually i expect him to start every game and will be still fresh if they do make the playoffs

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I think the Flames could benefit from a shortened season - their best players could use a closer finish line. Any club with a core of Kipper and Iggy has a chance, and if they don't have to survive 82 games, their chances have to be better.

I think they have a good core of younger players as well - Giordano, Glencross, and Baertschi are really good homegrown talent.

I also think Babchuk is better than a few guys generally pencilled in to the Flames top 6 - if no one over there wants him, I'd be happy to offer a mid-round pick. I think he'll wind up in their top 6 if he's healthy.

I don't like the Wideman signing - I realize the Flames wanted a guy that can precipitate offense, but I think they overpaid for him and hockey is a two way game - I think his game without the puck is too much to sacrifice to pay what they did.

I'm not sold on the general direction they are taking - Wideman, Cammalleri, Cervenka - meh.

The future is strange in Calgary - some good young talent, but I wouldn't want to be depending upon aged vets and guys like Cammalleri, Wideman, Bouwmeester...

I'd have gone a little harder on the rebuild side of things - not bothering with Wideman and moving Bouwmeester if at all possible. I think given their cap reality, he might be one of the leading candidates for a buyout.

Like last year, their biggest problem is up the middle. They are small, inexperienced and think they'll miss Jokinen despite all the complaining they did about him.

Cammalleri is not a top line center - converting him to center is a bad long term option. Cervenka is an expensive gamble, and another undersized guy who could have some serious matchup problems down low in his own end of the ice. Backlund and Stajan round out a roster that is entirely unconvincing at that crucial position. I think the Flames wil wind up using Hudler at center. Hard to see much improvement here, where they needed it the most.

Nevertheless, they have some character. It's always impressive that they manage to be in the running - not sure if they can continue to sustain that - I certainly wouldn't bet on it - but in a shortened season this may be their best shot at making the playoffs in a while.

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Cervenka blood clot. Who knows when he'll fly over, let lone play.

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I like your team this year guys.

Feaster has done a good job of bringing in veterans while the Flames now have a decent nucleus of prospects. I foresee good things.

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Hmm, Flames might be in tough without a proper training camp. They got new players and Cammilier is playing center? Always thought he was a winger.

Anyone could be good in a shortened season but being that I live in Calgary I look forward to the nonsense to come within the next couple weeks.

Also, Baertschi should be playing, he is ready to go.

Baertschi -Hudler - Iginla (best chemistry)

Tanguay- Backlund - Cammalleri

Iginla mentors Baertshci

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I think a lot of it will depend on the schedule. If there's a lot of divisional games, then Calgary will have win the season series against the Canucks, Oilers, Wild and Avalanche. I think all of those teams made progress with their lineups, so that's no easy task for any team.

If there isn't a lot of divisional play, then it becomes much harder to predict how any team does.

I will say this though, all signs point to this being the last go for the Flames veteran core. How the team does this season should impact who is and who isn't a Flame next season. New coach, new system, no more excuses.

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