With the calendar officially flipped to 2017, I thought it would be a good time to look back at some Flames memories that have happened in the last 12 months. I wonder what we’ll see 12 months from now when we do a 2017 reflection. Hopefully a Stanley Cup :)
#10: Mikael Backlund’s Hat Trick in 7-3 Victory in the Last Home Game of 2015-16 (April 7)
First career hat trick, and the third goal came shorthanded. Congrats Mikael Backlund! #NHLFirstshttps://t.co/4nwMtHYKyv— NHL (@NHL) April 8, 2016
It was a game that had no importance in the standings whatsoever, but that didn’t matter to Mikael Backlund and the Flames as they sent their fans home happy on Fan Appreciation Night.
The fact that the victory came against the rival Canucks made things so much sweeter.
You can view our recap from that night here
#9: Shutting out Edmonton 5-0 in the Last Visit to Rexall Place (April 2)
The #Flames final visit to Rexall Place was a memorable one thanks to their 5-0 win ~ https://t.co/j6VEChdXHl pic.twitter.com/vKqutQL3cy— Calgary Flames (@NHLFlames) April 3, 2016
In the final visit to a building that witnessed many amazing Battle of Alberta tilts over the years, the Flames easily handled the Oilers. Perhaps it was fitting as the Flames finished 15-3-1 in their final 19 visits to Rexall dating back to the 2009/10 season.
Johnny Gaudreau picked up his 30th goal of the season as the Flames skated to an inspired victory.
You can view our recap from that night here
#8: Trading for Brian Elliott, Signing Chad Johnson (June 24/July 1)
TRADE: Blues reportedly send Brian Elliott to the Flames for 35th overall pick. https://t.co/6AIuPjifBF pic.twitter.com/jfO7MNhyAm— theScore (@theScore) June 25, 2016
I decided to group these two acquisitions together because as a whole they signaled that the Flames believed they were ready to take the next step in their crease and move on from the debacle of the previous season.
Elliott struggled early in the season but has picked it up of late while Chad Johnson was absolutely amazing for about a month which saved the season in my opinion. It will be interesting how the rest of the season plays out between them, as well as the following offseason.
For our news piece on the Elliott trade click here
For our news piece on the Johnson signing click here
#7: Robbing the Dallas Stars in the Kris Russell Trade (February 29)
The Stars have acquired Kris Russell from the Flames. Pending trade call. Trade Details: pic.twitter.com/8Deo6b6QvQ— Brock Seguin (@Brock_Seguin) February 29, 2016
When the biggest downside of this trade was that the 2nd round pick didn’t turn into a 1st, you know it was a solid deal. Many stories came out following this deal that the Dallas Stars were robbed and that seems to be the case.
Russell moved onto Edmonton during this summer, while Jokipakka has played 27 games for the Flames registering a goal and four assists. Brett Pollock has 5 goals and 6 assists in 25 ECHL games, and the 2nd round pick was used to select Dillon Dube who has 11 points in 10 WHL games and is currently playing for Team Canada at the World Jrs.
For our article about the trade click here
#6: Crushing Anaheim 8-3 (December 4)
YOU CAN PUT IT IN THE WIN COLUMN! The #Flames burn the #Ducks 8-3! #ANAvsCGY pic.twitter.com/h243MuX0DO— Calgary Flames (@NHLFlames) December 5, 2016
In a game that is arguably the best of the 2016-17 season thus far, the Flames absolutely roasted the Ducks.
The game was already a cause for celebration before the puck dropped because Johnny Gaudreau had returned from a broken finger weeks earlier than expected.
Then the Flames rallied off five goals in 6:04 during the second period to throttle the Ducks and set off a party inside the Saddledome.
For our recap of the game click here
#5: Firing Bob Hartley (May 3)
#Flames coach Bob Hartley fired a year after winning Jack Adams Trophy https://t.co/30FP8axM1w via @npsport pic.twitter.com/5lcxU68wnk— National Post (@nationalpost) May 3, 2016
Bob Hartley was axed shortly after the conclusion of the 2015-16 season which featured the Flames finishing 20 points lower in the standings than they did in 14-15.
Hartley had seemed to reach his peak during the 14-15 season where everything seemingly went “right” and yet the Flames still barely qualified for the playoffs.
With that in mind the Flames chose to move on from Hartley, creating a divide among Flames fans that lasted well into this season until things got under control.
For our news piece on his firing click here
#4: Sam Bennett’s Four Goal Game against Florida (January 13)
ICYMI: Five facts about Sam Bennett's four-goal game against the #FlaPanthers ~ https://t.co/A8pGSvNEBt pic.twitter.com/vyNvAJTmTx— Calgary Flames (@NHLFlames) January 15, 2016
Despite 2016 not even being two weeks old, Sam Bennett made his way onto this list with a dazzling four goal performance in a 6-0 win over the Florida Panthers.
In the game Bennett became the 3rd youngest player to ever score four goals in a game, and the youngest Flame to score a hat trick. He also saved his best goal for last.
Not only did @SBennett93 score four goals, he also saved the best for last.https://t.co/IpWD9ai6EH— NHL (@NHL) January 14, 2016
For our recap of the game click here
#3: Resigning Sean Monahan (August 19)
#Flames sign Sean Monahan https://t.co/8mG0dPkCKl— Matchsticks&Gasoline (@MatchsticksCGY) August 19, 2016
The Flames made Sean Monahan the first of their big two RFA resignings this summer when the brought Monahan back on a 7 year deal worth $44.1M.
Monahan started slowly this season but turned it around with a lengthy point streak and has 10 goals and 10 assists in 38 games this season.
For our news piece on Monahan’s deal click here
#2: Drafting Matthew Tkachuk at 6th Overall (June 24)
Calgary Flames take Matthew Tkachuk with No. 6 overall pick at NHL Entry Draft https://t.co/JYC8BJWk4z— Calgary Herald (@CalHerSports) June 25, 2016
Many people thought heading into the 2016 NHL Entry Draft that Matthew Tkachuk would be the ideal prospect for the Calgary Flames to pick up with their sixth overall selection.
However, there were also some thinking that there was a possibility that Tkachuk could be taken before the Flames had the chance, but luckily that didn’t happen as he fell into their lap.
With the Canucks taking Tkachuk’s OHL teammate Olli Juolevi, it was confirmed that Tkachuk would become a Flame.
He hasn’t disappointed whatsoever as he has become aforce in the Flames lineup and has started to really rack up the points as of late. Tkachuk has 7 goals and 15 assists in 35 games this season, which is a better points-per-game than Sean Monahan and Sam Bennett had in their rookie years.
For our draft day piece on Tkachuk click here
#1: Resigning Johnny Gaudreau (October 10)
Flames re-sign Johnny Gaudreau to 6-year deal worth a reported $40.5M. https://t.co/GtGDBRYhYC pic.twitter.com/5JIrR5KjIc— theScore (@theScore) October 10, 2016
Canadian Thanksgiving was a day where Flames fans were able to express their gratitude for the Flames finally resigning star-player Johnny Gaudreau.
It took the full offseason and past the last preseason game before a deal between the two sides was reached. However, the deal that was finally reached featured both solid term and a great cap hit for the Flames considering his skill level.
Gaudreau started the season slowly (for him) which had many questioning whether his play had been affected by the holdout, but has since turned it around following his return from injury and has 25 points in 29 games this season.
For our news piece on Gaudreau’s deal click here
BONUS: Flames have Playoff hopes heading into 2017
With 2017 upon us, the Flames sit in a wild card spot in the Western Conference and look like they’ll be in a battle for a playoff spot for the rest of the season. It will be interesting to see how the team responds under their new coaching staff as each game’s value becomes higher and higher.
The Flames play their first game of the new year on January 4th against the Colorado Avalanche!