Hey, hey the Gang's all here. For now.
The Calgary Maple Rangers make their debut this evening. The line combos resemble a random grab-bag of the new and remaining Flames: Iggy + the Leafs, Langkow + the Blue Shirts, Bourque + the kids. Something about a blindfold and some darts comes to mind. A few games into the season I made the comment that Butter would need some time to assess his assets and how best to deploy them. Back to square one!
Other stuff to watch for:
- The Hurricanes are basically a one line team, but it's a capable trio - Staal, Whitney and Jokinen. Which of the Flames forward units sees that match-up? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?
- Speaking of Whitney, he was once upon a time one of my preferred trade targets. Word is he's seeking a guaranteed 3 year deal with the team who trades for him, or else he'll refuse to waive his NTC. The combination of that and the reent flurry deals probably takes him off the table from a Flames perspective.
- One wonders what precipitated the Sarich/Giordano switch. Sarich was struggling where he was and has looked positively shell-shocked next to Bouwmeester versus the tougher level of competition. Sure, it's nice to have Giordano beating up the lesser lights, but at what cost?
- As mentioned in the Sutter article today, the Flames have to win about 62% of their remaining games to garner 95 points. With each successive loss, that ratio increases. Meaning the Flames don't have time to "gel into a cohesive unit" or the like. Their play-off push begins tonight.
Let 'er rip.