Thursday, March 31, 2016

This Concerns Me

As a Calgary Flames fan, we have to hope to lose every game. Like it or not, the tank nation is in full bloom. And as a fan, that makes common sense. But what concerns me is if the players start believing losing is acceptable.

I once talked to a source who told me this can be a major problem. The players start getting used to losing and lose their desire to do what it takes.

My source described how the process begins. Believe or not, it starts with the coaches. They get frustrated with the players, and they give up on them. They start doubting the players' ability, so they start accepting the players' failures. They start making strange coaching decisions and start second-guessing themselves.

The second problem that goes with this acceptance of failure is the superstars thinking they are better than the third and fourth line grinders.  This leads to them not working as hard in practice. The coaches have to stop this before it starts. If the coaching staff let it go, they give players the wrong message. What is the message, you ask? It's only practice. That didn't work so well for a particular basketball player.

So as a Flames fan, I understand tank nation. But I hate to say this. I do have some major concerns with tank nation. So I just want them to lose every game as long as it's not acceptable to lose.


Apparently, the Flames' priority is getting a number one goalie. Of course, that is obvious. Breaking news from Sportsnet is that the Flames are trying to sign Yale goalie Alex Lyon. It is nice to see them being aggressive. Now for a little tidbit for the draft blog the Flames might seek to acquire another first rounder. They would like to draft another goalie in the draft.

How about how well the Flames did with the Russell trade? A solid dman, with a solid prospect and second rounder. No offense to Russell, no way did I think they could have gotten that kind of return for him.

Until next time.


Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Analyzing the Flames' Season

What word describes the Calgary Flames' Season?  Would it be underachievers?  Would it be unprepared?  Would it be disappointment? More than likely, all three of those words come to mind for most Flames fans.  If I was honest, maybe some other words, which I cannot use here.

So what happened?  If I ask most of you their biggest problem, you would say goaltending.

Some of you might put it on the defense.  Way too many giveaways in the offensive and defensive zones.  Defensive breakdowns were all too common.

Often there are no forwards within miles to back up the goalie. Too many floaters on the Flames this season. Forwards are staying up in the neutral zone waiting for the puck to come to them.  For some reason, this team’s grit has long gone south for the season.

Some may say the offensive scoring has to improve. Let's face facts. Outside of Johnny Hockey, would you give anyone a passing grade? No doubt this puts a lot of pressure on the goaltender.  Most nights, the Flames score only one or two goals.

That being said, the defense has taken a beating this season. Most of the time they were playing like they were walking on eggshells. The tender was guaranteed to give up at least one bad goal a game.

The defense is under pressure to play 100 percent mistake free because they have no confidence in the Goalies.  Add the pressure of the offense not being proficient enough to overcome inept goaltending.

All of this causes the enormous pressure on the defense not to make mistakes.  They jump at every chance they can, which usually results in way too many 2-on-1’s.

Then there is the other issue; their prima donna attitude. In other words, certain players are not willing to do what it takes to win.  Which is not being taken well by certain vets in the locker room.

If the rumors of a divided locker room are true, there could be a much deeper problem.  I have not been able to confirm it, but rumors of the Flames divided locker room are out there.

None of these problems can excuse the Flames.  There is way too much talent on this team for them to have such a poor season.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Crap is Crap. What the Heck?

After the incident Monday morning with Hartley leaving practice, someone has to worry that maybe Hartley has lost a little control of the dressing room. Are the inmates running the asylum? If this were the first time, I wouldn't worry, but this is not the first time this has happened. Hence, my alarm, or should I say, concern on this incident.

The Flames have been inconsistent at best. In fact, the Flames have been more awful than good. And this incident really worries me, because a team in shambles should not be doing the crap they displayed on Monday, February 8th.

There is no excuse for this, and I understand why Hartley did what he did. The players have to realize that the season is on the line here. If they continue to play the way they are playing, they may not be able to recover. Which will result in major changes in the offseason. Trust me, it will happen.

Stupid, lazy players are taking off whole periods at a time. Too many times I have said the Flames have to play a full 60 minutes. I, for one, am tired of seeing a very bad powerplay. They have done nothing all season and continue to struggle.

Forwards giving up on plays, floating in defensive zone coverage. Too many breakdowns in their zone. Defense caught standing still while opposing forwards skate around them, and no forwards to back them up.

Then let's talk about the goaltending. Actually, let's not, and pretend we did. At least they have been outstanding since the All-Star break. Unfortunately, it's way too late to save the season. I, for one, wonder why it took them so long to show up.

So you tell me, what gives these players the right to be so happy and pull the stunt they pulled on Monday? This happy-go-lucky attitude may very well mean the end of the Flames. Good on Hartley for doing what he did.

Flames Jambalaya is in no way, shape or form associated with the Calgary Flames Hockey Club or the AHL affiliate, the Abbotsford Heat. This is a fans blog for fans. We just happen to love the Flames, so we write about it.