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Everything posted by kehatch

  1. kehatch


    I think you have to go with Rittich. I get wanting to manage his load and getting Talbot in a game. But part of moving away from Smith was to show Rittich he is the guy. Tough to stay with that message if you don't start him after a two day break following a shutout.
  2. They figured him out in February but then forgot what they figured out by March? The Flames didn't have a problem scoring in the regular season and the preseason means precisely nothing.
  3. Am I missing something? Did we not score 289 goals last season? Inability to score??
  4. The playoffs were encouraging, I agree. I am fine with giving him a chance. But that is sort of the point of my post. He is a player that needs a good season and hopefully a good start. Making him the line roulette guy is probably not the best way to do that. The guy has been bounced around all three forward positions and hasn't been on a set line all preseason, and we still don't know where he is going to start. For a guy that has struggled but who should have more to show, that seems like a poor approach.
  5. No he isn't. The third line was a liability last season. Not just because of Bennett, but he was a big part of it. He has yet to show he can be a positive player in the NHL on a consistent basis. He somehow managed to be a team leading - 6 on a team with a positive differential of over 60, he takes way more penalties then he draws, his 5 on 5 numbers are poor, and he rarely plays special teams. And last season was an improvement. All that for 27 points and a 2.6.million dollar cap hit. He hasn't been fine. Either cut bait or put him in a position to be successful. But he is almost the last player on the team that should be jumping between all top 3 lines and every forward position.
  6. The coach has indicated Bennett is his guy to move up and down the roster. A little like Ryan was last year I guess. Hopefully it works out okay for him. But personally I think that is the last thing Bennett needs. Everytime he starts to find success on a line they move him. Then when he gets trapped on a line without success they leave him there. I am not in the Bennett fan club. But if your sticking with him at least put him in a situation to be successful.
  7. I like Rieder. I want my fourth line guys to do something other then play 6 sheltered minutes a night. I want them to be able to play up and perform a role such as kill penalties, draw penalties, play physical, etc. Rieder has the ability to play up, kill penalties, and has some offensive potential. Plus, with him on a 2 way minimum wage deal there is nothing to worry about. This isn't a Grossman type deal where the player is a liability and will hurt the team on the ice.
  8. The PK is the big one for me. Calgary was an elite team 5 on 5, but our special teams were poor. Especially the PK. Last year out regular forwards on the PK were Lindholm, Jankowski, Ryan, Hathaway, and Backlund. We lost Hathaway and I won't be shocked to lose Jankowski. Ryan and Lindholm are sticking around, but weren't great on the PK. This is a good add.
  9. kehatch


    Good news for sure. Got better every game. As for starts, I guess that will depend on how Rittich is playing and how many starts the org has planned for Talbot. If the are looking at more of a 1A 1B scenario then I agree against LA, and maybe even against Vancouver game 2. But if they are giving Rittich the chance to be a legitimate starter, and he is playing well, my guess is game 6 against San Jose
  10. Mine are close to yours with a few key differences. I need to see Andersson handle bigger minutes before I put him on the top pairing full time. That is one of the reasons I think a Brodie trade is a non-starter right now. Giordano has a career season and won a Norris playing next to Brodie. I don't mess that up unless that pairing doesn't work or Andersson makes a serious push. I don't like Mangiapane in the top 6 yet, but he could earn his way there. I don't like Czarnik in the top 6 at all. My fourth line doesn't look like yours at all. I have: Gaudreau-Monahan-Ryan (Offensive): Ryan gives them a solid RH face off guy, and he plays a similar game to the kind of players that have had success on the top line Tkachuk-Lindholm-Bennett (Blend): Bennett adds a guy who can carry the puck into the offensive zone and add some skill. I like having an energy line in the top 6 and I think having Bennett and Tkachuk together gives you that. Plus, we get another top 6 with a LH RH face off option. Lucic-Backlund-Frolik (Defensive): Backlund and Frolik are obvious. They have been great together. Lucic's possession numbers are strong, plus he has a similar play style to Tkachuk. I also think playing with Backlund gives him the best chance to recover his game due to the so called 'Backlund Bump'. Mangiapane-Quine-Rieder (Sheltered): Quine is showing he is ready and he is a million less then Jankowski. Rieder makes the team to replace the PK time we lose with Jankowski. I think this is a quality 4 line that gives the team depth, special team support, but can contribute a bit on its own. (Scratch) Czarnik: Czarnik is an (almost) ideal 13 forward. He can play if we need him to and it lets guys like Dube develop in the AHL. The only issue is he is paid an extra 500K more then I would like. Which is why I am also open to a trade and bringing back a 700K 13 forward. Giordano-Brodie: This worked last season, and it worked very well. Brodie gets some flack, but he was part B to possibly the best pairing in the NHL last season. Hanafin-Hamonic: Old faithful, no need to mess this match up. MacDonald-Andersson: Kylington hasn't shown he is ready for a full time role. He is also not waiver eligible so he can easily be sent down. Signing MacDonald gives us the option to bringing Kylington up in the future without the pressure of 'do or die'. Stone: He wasn't my first pick for a 7D. But he is on a minimum wage contract and can clearly play at the NHL level, so here he is. This isn't perfect. I would like to see a bit of size on the top line from a player with a bit more offensive ability. I am not a huge fan of Bennett and putting him on the right side adds a bit of extra challenge to a player still working to find his way. I also don't love the lack of a RH shot on the third line. But overall I think this is a deep line up that is mobile top to bottom and that has a good range of offense / defense.
  11. The guys that have worked on the top line have all been strong defensively. Hudler, Ferland, Lindholm. I don't know if Bennett it a good fit there. That said, I prefer him there then on the Backlund line. But only if your doing it to spread out across three lines. I don't know you solve much moving Lindholm to the Backlund line.
  12. They started last season with Tkachuk-Backlund-Bennett. It wasn't good and they eventually returned Frolik to the top line. It looks fine in the preseason playing against AHLers. But how does it look when squared up against the leagues best in our defensive zone? I am not saying it can't work. But it didn't last season.
  13. I hope so, at some point. But given the limited preseason left I think you see the standard top 6 to start. The one exception might be Bennett in for Frolik. I wouldn't, but it won't surprise me if that occurs.
  14. I think the trade Brodie ship has sailed. Between the Valimaki injury and the bridge deal for Tkachuk I doubt they trade Brodie at this point. Maybe they make a trade in season depending how Andersson and Kylington do, but not now.
  15. If the Flames run 22 players they can get around 130k under the cap. That isn't enough. So who do they move? My take on the likely players (in order) : Jankowski: They can probably get a mid round pick for Jankowski. If they replace him with Quine they save almost a million on the cap. Czarnik: I don't think they get much for Czarnik, but they can probably move his salary. It only saves us around half a million, but that might be enough. Bennett: They have been showcasing him all preseason, and given his playoffs he might have a bit of value. Not sure you can move him on a straight cap dump, but you might get a second round pick and a depth player. Frolik: Given his cap hit I don't think Frolik has a bunch of value. If he did he probably would have been moved in the summer. He probably has more value to the Flames then they get back. But given the tensions last season and being on the last year of his contract he is a possibility. Ryan: This one is a bit of a leap because I think the Flames, and the coach, like him. I also don't think he gets you much of a return. But he is paid too much to play on the fourth line, even with his versatility. My guess is they trade Jankowski, sign Reider and MacDonald, and demote Dube and Kylington. Gaudreau-Monahan-Lindholm Tkachuk-Backlund-Frolik Lucic-Ryan-Bennett Mangiapane-Quine-Czarnik Rieder Giordano-Brodie Hanafin-Hamonic MacDonald-Andersson Stone Rittich Talbot
  16. The coach has talked a lot about trying Lindholm at C, and his inability to rework the roster hurt us in the playoffs. I expect you will see two Flames looks this season. One with the traditional lines and one with the pairs above. I think the ability to transition between deep and top heavy would be a big asset against some teams. I also think the reason we haven't seen it this preseason is because Tkachuk is not signed.
  17. The Flames did build through the draft. The vast majority of our players were drafted and developed by the Flames. But you can't do it exclusively. There comes a time when you give up futures to win now. Otherwise you never win. The Flames gave up too much in the Hamonic deal for sure. But trading away picks to make the team better at that stage in the build made sense.
  18. The Flames best players make less then 7 million. We have plenty of kids to spread across the line up. We have a single bad contract on the entire roster. We have a team that was good enough to take first in the west. Your rationale is flawed. 1. We don't have a cap reality that would require us to trade Backlund. See above. 2. We don't have the C depth to afford trading Backlund. Losing him would leave us with the C depth that would be a tremendous obstacle that would remove us from contention. 3. Backlund is not overpaid in a 2C or 3C role. Investing at C is how you win championships. The Flames need to add at C. Not take away. That's why Treliving went after Kadri. It's why so many people are calling for Lindholm to be moved to C. Monahan, Backlund, Jankowski is not good enough. Monahan, Bennett, Jankowski would be absolutely terrible. I would like to see them pair Gaudreau-Monahan, Lindholm-Tkachuk, and Backlund-Frolik. That sets under 35 million for the three pairs. That's a huge bargain (the Leafs are almost paying that for their top 3 forwards) and it leaves us with a respectable Monahan, Lindholm, Backlund C depth.
  19. kehatch


    I would have liked to see Gilles get a full start. Coming in for the last half is hard on a goalie. That said, Gilles just doesn't look right. It doesn't look like rust or nerves, it looks like he doesn't have the basic fundamentals. He isn't tracking the puck at all, his judgment is poor, his five hole is massive, and somehow he manages to look small despite his size. I don't know how they give him more time. They have two more throw away games, then two where they need to start taking things seriously. Talbot needs one of the throw aways and your would think they want to give Zagidulin a game to help his development and do some assessment. You would have to think Zag is the first call up if we have an injury so he needs a game. That leaves rotation as Talbot, Zag, Talbot, Rittich. It might change a bit, but unless they let Gilles split next game with Talbot then I think he is done as a Flame.
  20. Why can't we afford him? We aren't anything like Toronto. They have some of the highest paid players in the league on their roster. Our best players are making under 7 million a year and will for at least the next 3. Tkachuk may be the lone exception to that. Yes it's tight this season. But it looks really good for the following two. Trading Backlund as a way to generate cap space isn't required and would be a huge loss for a team in the window to go after a cup.
  21. Backlund is one of the better NHL players 5 on 5. He plays the hard minutes against the other teams top lines, yet he still consistently outscores the opposition. He also elevates his team mates with the 'Backlund bump.' There are very few players that haven't had success as his winger, and some exceptionally so (see Colborne, Bouma, etc). Meanwhile Bennett still needs to prove his is a positive NHLer. He plays sheltered minutes, is usually a weight on his line, and this while he plays the sheltered easy minutes. I would like to see Backlund moved to the third line and away from Tkachuk (who has more offensive upside). Coaches usually plan lines in pairs. I think Gaudreau/Monahan, Lindholm/Tkachuk, Backlund/Frolik, and Lucic/Ryan provide a solid foundation down the middle and on the wing. That leaves an army of wingers like Bennett, Dube, Czarnik, Mangiapane, Quine, etc to fill in the rest. I also think you can move Ryan or Lucic up as needed to get them more minutes and add some extra spice to the lines. But the Flames can't afford to simply lose Backlund. That would remove our luxury of getting our top line the offensive starts, further weaken a centre position that needs an upgrade, and really damage our depth (which was one of our two major issues last season). If we end up needing to clear cap then getting rid of Jankowski or even Bennett makes a lot more sense.
  22. Doubt it. They seem to like the second pair. Not sure Andersson is ready for consistent top pair time. My guess is they keep Brodie. Stone was about adding some depth to an area that needs depth I think. Thst said. Who knows?
  23. I think the fact they just signed him indicates they like him. I expect he will be our 6 or 7D.
  24. kehatch


    It is plausible. It is also convenient. It's getting too common we here the injury explanation come out after a season to explain poor play. I have zero doubts it is true in some cases and a contributor in others. But just about everyone is dinged come February and its an easy out. To be clear, I am not saying that Rittich didn't have an injury that explained the down turn. I am also not saying he is destined to falter next February. I just think big questions still remain re his ability to excel down the stretch or his durability to play solid hockey for a full season. The "don't worry about it because he says he was injured" argument doesn't sway me. Not after two seasons of the same routine. He needs to prove he can do it. Until he does I think his durability and ability to play down the stretch are fair questions.
  25. kehatch


    I don't buy the injury argument. If your hurt as a goalie then you don't play. I am sure he was nicked up, but in a 82+ game season that's going to happen. He got starts and stayed on the roster. The fact is he fell off in February two seasons in a row. We can grasp for reasons, but until he shows me he can perform during the toughest months of the year I remain skeptical.
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