Flames All-Time Countdown Chapter XII: 475-471

Remember the 2003 Draft? This guy doesn't.

Today's dispatch features Tim Ramholt, Randy Bucyk, Vic Mercredi, Mark Freer, and Niklas Sundblad.

475. Tim Ramholt

Ramholt is a 6'1", 195 lb. defenseman from Zurich, Switzerland. Born on November 2nd, 1984, he played two seasons with his hometown Zurich Lions beginning in 2001-02, making six goals in 67 contests and spending 26 minutes in the box. The Flames used their second round pick in the NHL Amateur Draft of 2003 to select him 39th overall.

2003-04 would see Ramholt play his season in the QMJHL with the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles, scoring nine times with 27 assists in 51 contests. The next two seasons would be spent back in the Swiss-A league, first with the Lions (41 games, one goal, three assists, 36 PiM), then with the Kloten Flyers (42 games, one assist, 46 PiM).

Ramholt, a shutdown defenseman, made his professional debut with the Omaha Ak-Sar-Ben Knights in 2006-07 (67 games, two goals, 10 assists, 61 PiM). and played most of the next season with the Quad City Flames (77 games, four goals, 20 assists, 73 PiM). On November 29th, he made his first and thus far only NHL appearance with the Flames, skating a grand total of 45 seconds and posting a minus-1 rating. I guess he didn't make much of an impression.

After splitting 2008-09 between the Philadelphia Phantoms (seven games, minus-1 rating) and the Milwaukee Admirals (59 games, two goals, eight assists, 36 PiM), Ramholt rejoined his former league in Switzerland, skating for HC Davos. He currently plays with EV Zug.

All-Time Statline: One game, zero goals, zero assists, minus-1 rating, zero PiM, -0.10 point shares.

474. Randy Bucyk

Born on November 9th, 1962, Bucyk grew into a 5'11", 179 lb. center. A native of Edmonton, Alberta, he played four seasons at the collegiate level with Northeastern University, graduating with the Class of 1984. He averaged just over a point per game, totaling 60 goals and 57 assists in 116 contests.

Bucyk skated with the Sherbrooke Canadiens for three seasons beginning in 1984-85, racking up 63 goals and 98 assists in 175 AHL contests. He also earned a look at the NHL level with Montreal, scoring four goals with two assists, a plus-5 rating and eight penalty minutes in 17 games.

During the 1987 offseason, Bucyk signed a free agent contract with Calgary. He would play for four seasons with the Flames IHL affiliate, the Salt Lake Golden Eagles, scoring 91 times with 149 helpers and 110 penalty minutes in 239 games. He earned a callup with the Flames in November, and played in two contests. He took two shots on goal, finishing with a minus-1 rating.

All-Time Statline: Two games, zero goals, zero assists, minus-1 rating, zero PiM, -0.10 point shares.

473. Vic Mercredi

Mercredi was a 5'11", 185 lb. left winger from Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. Born on March 31st, 1953, he played two seasons in the WHL with the New Westminster Bruins, lighting the lamp 76 times with 91 assists in 135 games. He was drafted twice in 1973, by the Houston Aeros in the third round, 35th overall in the WHA, and in the first round by the Flames, 16th overall.

Mercredi opened 1973-74 with the CHL's Omaha Knights, appearing 132 times over most of the next two seasons. He put up 31 goals and 52 assists for them. The Flames also called him up for two games in November, 1974. He didn't score or spend any time in the penalty box, finishing empty on the scoresheet with an even rating.

Mercredi later appeared with the WHA's Calgary Cowboys (three games, 29 PiM), the AHL's Baltimore Clippers (52 games, six goals, nine assists), the PHL's Phoenix Roadrunners (42 games, 16 goals, 24 assists), and the PHL's Tuscon Rustlers (29 games, eight goals, 20 assists).

All-Time Statline: Two games, zero goals, zero assists, even rating, zero PiM, -0.10 point shares.

472. Mark Freer

Freer, born on July 14th, 1968, is a Toronto, Ontario native and a 5'10", 180 center. After a 16 goal, 28 assist campaign with the Peterborough Petes in 1985-86, he was signed as a free agent with the Philadelphia Flyers. He played two more campaigns primarily for Peterborough (128 games, 77 goals, 113 assists), also playing in one game for the Flyers in each season.

1988-89 would see Freer play his first of four full seasons with the Hershey Bears (248 games, 89 goals, 140 assists), also making two more appearances in Philadelphia before staying with the club for 50 games in 1991-92 (six goals, seven assists).

In 1992-93, Freer joined the Ottawa Senators for 63 contests (10 goals, 14 assists, minus-35, 39 PiM). The Flames signed him as a free agent just prior to the 1993-94 season.

Freer played in 77 contests for the Saint John Flames that year, scoring 33 times with 53 helpers and 45 penalty minutes. He was twice called up to play for Calgary, first in an October 17th, 2-2 tie with the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim, in which he earned four penalty minutes. His second game occurred on December 20th, in a 4-3 loss to the Dallas Stars. Freer did not figure onto the scoresheet.

Commencing with the next season, Freer played for the IHL's Houston Aeros for six seasons (469 games, 132 goals, 210 assists), later catching on with the Philadelphia Phantoms (156 games, 46 goals, 77 assists) and the Hershey Bears for the second time (70 games, 21 goals, 32 assists).

All-Time Statline: Two games, zero goals, zero assists, even rating, four PiM, -0.10 point shares.

471. Niklas Sundblad

Sundblad, a 6'1", 200 lb. right winger from Stockholm, Sweden, was born on January 3rd, 1973. He was skating with AIK Solna in Sweden when the Flames chose him in the first round of the 1991 NHL Entry Draft with the 19th overall pick. In three seasons with AIK, he played in 94 contests, scoring 15 goals with nine assists.

1993-94 would see Sundblad join the Saint John Flames in the AHL for the better part of three seasons. He scored 38 times with 44 assists in 222 games overall. He would get his first (and last) call up to the Flames in November, 1995. He played in two games, took three shots on goal, and finished with an even rating as the Flames went 1-0-1 with him on the ice.

Sundblad wouldn't again appear in North American competitive hockey, electing instead to play in Finland, Sweden, Germany, Italy, and Japan.

All-Time Statline: Two games, zero goals, zero assists, even rating, zero PiM, -0.10 point shares.

That's today's story. Check back tomorrow for five more bit-part players in the richness that is the Atlanta/Calgary Flames history.

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