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Flames All-Time Countdown Chapter LIX: 240-236

Today's dissertation features left wingers Dave Kryskow and Jeff Cowan, center Don Laurence, and defensemen Derek Smith and Dale DeGray.

Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

240. Dave Kryskow

Kryskow was born on Christmas Day, 1951 in Edmonton, Alberta. A 5'10", 175 lb. left winger, he played three WCHL seasons between the Saskatoon Blades (28 games, four goals, 25 assists, 57 PiM), and the Edmonton Oil Kings (87 games, 50 goals, 53 assists, 173 PiM). The Chicago Blackhawks selected him in the second round of the 1971 NHL Entry Draft, with the 26th overall pick.

Kryskow’s first four professional seasons would see him play with the CHL’s Dallas Black Hawks (107 games, 43 goals, 46 assists, 195 PiM), Chicago (83 games, eight goals, 12 assists, 22 PiM), the Detroit Red Wings (18 games, one goal, four assists, four PiM), and the Washington Capitals (51 games, nine goals, 15 assists, 83 PiM).

Kryskow was traded from Detroit to the Atlanta Flames as the 1975 offseason got underway for Bryan Hextall Jr. Over the 1975-76 season, he played in 79 games, scoring 15 times on 120 shots with a team sixth-best 25 assists. He ranked fifth on the team with 65 penalty minutes and finished the year with a minus-6 rating.

Starting in 1976-77, Kryskow left the NHL for other domestic options. He played with the SHL’s Tidewater Sharks (37 games, 16 goals, 23 assists, 95 PiM), the WHA’s Calgary Cowboys (45 games, 16 goals, 17 assists, 47 PiM), and the WHA’s Winnipeg Jets (71 games, 20 goals, 21 assists, 16 PiM).

All-Time Statline: 79 games, 15 goals, 25 assists, minus-6 rating, 65 penalty minutes, 1.96 point shares.

239. Don Laurence

Laurence, sometimes known as "Red," was a 5'9", 173 lb. center from Galt, Ontario. Born on June 27th, 1957, he played four seasons in the WHA between the Peterborough Petes (129 games, 68 goals, 64 assists) and the Kitchener Rangers (94 games, 93 goals, 81 assists). The Atlanta Flames selected him in the second round of the 1977 NHL Entry Draft with the 28th overall pick.

Laurence was also selected in the WHA’s Draft, by the Winnipeg Jets, in the fourth round with the 37th overall selection. When the season started, he reported to the CHL’s Tulsa Oilers (39 games, 15 goals, 11 assists).

In 1978-79, Laurence played with the AHL’s Nova Scotia Voyageurs for 20 games, scoring seven goals and as many assists. He played most of the campaign with Atlanta, scoring a team-ninth 14 goals on 113 shots, with 20 helpers over 59 games. He finished the season with a plus-8 rating and a nearly angelic six penalty minutes.

Just before the 1979-80 season, the Flames traded Laurence with Ed Kea and a second round pick (Hakan Nordin) to the St. Louis Blues for Garry Unger. He closed out his NHL career with a goal and two assists over 20 contests with the Blues. Later, he played with the Salt Lake Golden Eagles (CHL, 98 games, 46 goals, 48 assists), the Indianapolis Checkers (CHL, 226 games, 127 goals, 147 assists), and Ambri-Piotta (Switzerland). After taking four seasons off from the organized sport, he returned to play two seasons with Zug, in Switzerland. He had 54 goals and 47 assists for the team.

All-Time Statline: 59 games, 14 goals, 20 assists, plus-8 rating, 34 penalty minutes, 1.98 point shares.

238. Derek Smith

Smith, from Belleville, Ontario, was born on October 13th, 1984. A 6'1", 200 lb. defenseman, he played four seasons with the OPJHL's Wellington Dukes (123 games, 20 goals, 52 assists).

After his time in juniors, Smith played three seasons in college, playing 117 games for Lake Superior State University. He scored 13 goals and 32 assists while with the Lakers. Starting in 2007-08, he joined the Ottawa Senators organization, playing mostly with the Binghampton Senators (272 games, 33 goals, 109 assists). He also made brief appearances with the Elmira Jackals (one game, one assist) and Ottawa (11 games, one assist).

On July 13th, 2011, Smith signed a free agent contract with the Flames. On November 29th, he scored his first NHL goal, the only goal scored in a 1-0 Flames win over the Nashville Predators. Four days later, he scored a goal with an assist in a 5-3 victory over the Edmonton Oilers. From December 10th through the 15th, he dished out four assists over three games, ending with two in a 5-4 overtime loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning. In total, he scored twice on 44 shots, with nine assists, a minus-1 rating and a dozen penalty minutes in 15:56 per appearance.

In 2012-13, Smith played in 22 games for Calgary, playing 12:15 per game and taking 18 shots on goal. He finished with a single assist, on March 3rd in a 4-2 win against the Vancouver Canucks. He finished with a minus-5 rating and 10 penalty minutes.

Smith played in 14 games for the Flames in 2013-14, finishing at an unenviable minus-10. He took 12 shots on goal and earned one assist with two penalty minutes in 9:32 per game. He also played 32 games with the Abbotsford Heat, scoring seven goals with 17 assists. He enters this offseason as an unrestricted free agent.

All-Time Statline: 83 games, two goals, 11 assists, minus-16 rating, 24 penalty minutes, 1.99 point shares.

237. Dale DeGray

DeGray, a Oshawa, Ontario native, was born on September 3rd, 1963. A 6', 206 lb. defenseman, he played 197 games with the Oshawa Generals, scoring 42 goals with 62 assists starting in 1979-80. The Flames selected him in the eighth round of the 1981 NHL Entry Draft with the 162nd overall pick.

In 1984-85, DeGray played 77 games with the Moncton Golden Flames, scoring 24 goals and 37 assists. He played 76 games with them the following season, with 10 goals, 31 assists and 128 penalty minutes. He also made his NHL debut with the Flames, earning a minus-1 rating in one contest.

1986-87 would see DeGray play another 45 games with Moncton (10 goals, 22 assists). In 27 contests with the Flames, he scored six goals on 57 shots with seven assists, 29 penalty minutes, and a minus-3 rating.

Just before the 1987-88 season got underway, the Flames traded DeGray to the Toronto Maple Leafs for a draft choice (Scott Matusovich). Aside from his time with the Leafs (56 games, six goals, 18 assists), he played with the Newmarket Saints (eight games, two goals, 10 assists), the  Los Angeles Kings (63 games, six goals, 22 assists), the Rochester Americans (114 games, 15 goals, 50 assists), the New Haven Nighthawks (16 games, two goals, 10 assists), the Buffalo Sabres (six games), the San Diego Gulls (159 games, 38 goals, 114 assists), the Detroit Vipers (14 games, one goal, eight assists), the Cleveland Lumberjacks (75 games, 20 goals, 58 assists), Cincinnati Cyclones (109 games, 18 goals, 62 assists), the Manitoba Moose (59 games, nine goals, 22 assists), the Quebec Rafales (31 games, four goals, nine assists), and the Indianapolis Ice (27 games, three goals, 11 assists). He coached for two seasons in the UHL with the Rockford IceHogs, racking up a 62-72-14 record.

Before hanging up his skates, DeGray gave us this TREMENDOUS moment:

All-Time Statline: 28 games, six goals, seven assists, minus-4 rating, 29 penalty minutes, 2.01 point shares.

236. Jeff Cowan

Cowan, a 6'2", 205 lb. left winger, is a Scarborough, Ontario native born on September 27th, 1976. He scored 11 goals with seven assists for the Guelph Storm in 68 games beginning in 1993-94.

In 1996-97, Cowan split the year between the Saint John Flames (22 games, five goals, five assists) and the Roanoke Express (47 games, 21 goals, 13 assists). He would play the next two seasons with Saint John (140 games, 22 goals, 25 assists).

In 1999-00, Cowan played 47 games with Saint John, scoring 15 goals and 10 assists. On February 25th, he made his NHL debut with Calgary. He scored his first goal a week later, in a 4-1 win over the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim. He totaled four goals on 26 shots over 13 games, with an assist. In 10:22 per contest, he earned 16 penalty minutes and a plus-2 rating.

2000-01 would see Cowan appear in 51 games for Calgary, predominantly in the bottom six. In 9:06 per game, he scored nine goals on 48 shots with four assists, 74 penalty minutes and a minus-8 rating. On December 9th, he scored one goal then assisted on another in a 7-2 Calgary win over the Carolina Hurricanes. He repeated the accomplishment on February 10th, in a 4-1 win over the Vancouver Canucks.

Cowan scored one goal on 13 shots near the beginning of the 2001-02 season for the Flames, a game winner in a 2-0 win over the Los Angeles Kings on December 3rd. In 19 games, he spent 40 minutes in the penalty box with a minus-3 rating in 7:44 per game. Two weeks later, the Flames traded him with Kurtis Foster to the Atlanta Thrashers for Petr Buzek and a draft pick (Adam Pardy).

Cowan played three seasons for the Thrashers (162 games, 16 goals, 21 assists), later playing with the Kings (80 games, 10 goals, four assists), the Vancouver Canucks (88 games, seven goals, four assists, 203 PiM), the Peoria Rivermen (71 games, five goals, 10 assists), the Portland Pirates (62 games, 18 goals, 13 assists), the Toronto Marlies (47 games, eight goals, eight assists), and the Isorlohn Roosters (Germany, 51 games, eight goals, six assists).

All-Time Statline: 83 games, 14 goals, five assists, minus-9 rating, 130 penalty minutes, 2.01 point shares.