Friday, September 23, 2016

Notes from Training Camp Day 1

There is nothing finer than finally seeing some hockey up close. Even if it is just training camp. I was able to attend the last two sessions of today's training camp. Too lazy to get up early enough for the first one.

Here are a few notes from my observations from today's practice. First, let me caution everyone, it's only one practice. This is not be all and end all proposition.

But that being said, there were some players who stood out.

Jon Gillies 

Seeing him today put me at ease. He looked good moving side-to-side.   His glove hand was flashing out like no one's business. Jon is coming off of an injury-plagued season; he has a lot to prove this season.  

Hunter Smith 

For some reason, Hunter was in the group B today. He was listed in group A, but he trained with the second group today. Hunter looked good. He seemed to be a faster skater this season. He looked like he had a good offseason. Hunter looked at home with the big boys.

Matthew Phillips

I like his speed. He is a very quick forward. He is small, but he has some skill. He was making some sweet moves today. I'm not sure he hits the big time, but today he was good.

It was nice to see Chad Johnson and Brian Elliot today at the practices.  It is just nice to see two goalies playing as well as they did.  Brian is a  steady, positional goalie. Chad was equally good today; the goaltending was in good hands.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

What's happening with the Flames?

Johnny Gaudreau

What the heck is going on with Johnny Gaudreau, the most highly-skilled forward? The contract extension is still not done. This has to be the top priority for Flames manager Brad Treliving. He cannot let this be a distraction to the team in the season. Gio coming out and saying he believes it will get done only adds to the pressure of getting it done. Most are speculating that the term of the contract is the biggest obstacle. The Flames want seven or eight years, while Johnny is leaning toward the bridge deal. My gut feeling is a four- to five-year compromise. It can’t be over seven.

Matthew Tkachuk

I do not care what anyone says, the only way I keep Matthew here is if he is in the top-six forwards. He is too gifted of a forward not to put in where he can succeed. I have seen too many teams ruin a player’s growth by putting them where they cannot succeed. Changing his role from a first line to a third line forward with the Flames won’t do him or the team any good.

Dennis Wideman

The Flames are still trying to find a trade partner; the problem is that teams are not forgetting the incident from last year. Will Dennis go off again without any provocation? The other problem is, of course, the cap hit for a powerplay specialist number five defenceman.

Top-six Forward?

The Flames are still in dire need of a top-six forward if Tkachuk does not make the team. Morgan Klimchuk is also close, but I am not sure if either is close enough to take that role. Mark has made strides in his progress from last season, but I would still keep him Stockton for another year. There is Brett Pollock, thanks to a silly Stars trade. I love his skill. He will be fun to watch. But again, Brett is not ready for that. Can we foresee a trade in the future? Or do the kids surprises us? Maybe even Daniel Pribyl, whom I did not mention. As you can see, there are plenty of questions and no answers.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Flames announce Monahan Contract

The Flames announced today they have Monny for the next seven years at $6.3 million.  When the Avs announced the Nathan MacKinnon signing, you knew that Monahan had to get a comparable contract.

So let's compare numbers, shall we?  Mackinnon's numbers last year were 21 goals and 31 assists.  Monahan's numbers clear that with 27 goals and 36 assists, for 63 points. Monny played 81 games, and Mackinnon played 72 games. Mackinnon has a career year 62 points, Monny, 63 points.  So as you can see, the Flames got a pretty good deal both ways.

The contract also puts into perspective the Flames trying to keep contracts under the $7 million a year if they can.  Apparently, the Flames feel having four $7 million players is better than having one $10 million player.  

Which is vital is to the Flames if they want to stay competitive over the next seven years.  Think about it; Bennett's and Tkachuk's contracts are up in the next three years. Elliot is a free agent next season. The Flames will need some cap room to get those contracts done.

It is vital that the Johnny Gaudreau contract stays under the $7 million number. Bennett and Tkachuk will be both stars in the future and will need their money too.

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.