The Flames newest acquisition will be ready to hit the ice at some point and it will no doubt make Calgary a better team. The big question is: Who is losing their ice time when Jaromir Jagr is ready to play?
Let’s look at the possible suspects currently on the Flames roster:
- Troy Brouwer
- Curtis Lazar
- Tanner Glass
We’ll start with the new whipping boy for Flames fans, Troy Brouwer. Brouwer is an easy target and for good reason. He was brutal last season and he hasn’t done much to make the fanbase, and probably team management, feel as if he deserves ice time. In three games so far this season the Flames associate captain (which blow my mind) has 1 SOG goal. 1. He also gets top line PP time, which is baffling as well. Glen Gulutzan clearly has a soft spot for Brouwer and I’d be shocked if he was the player that got the pine. He’s also making $4.5 million dollars this season and next. That’s a lot of money sitting in the press box, but that shouldn’t matter.
Of all the players that doesn’t deserve to get bumped for Jagr, Curtis Lazar is at the top of the list. Lazar played so well in the Flames 6-3 win over Winnipeg he got bumped up to the top line with Sam Bennett and Johnny Gaudreau. Lazar’s speed was an asset to the line and he looked like he was a natural fit with Gaudreau. He has 1 assist in the two games he’s played and he would have had a goal if not for a ridiculous save by Steve Mason. Lazar has all the potential and he’s starting to show it. I’d hate to see him not get the chance to keep developing on account of Jagr coming into the lineup.
Glass hasn’t done anything that makes you say he needs to stay in the lineup, but he also hasn’t done anything so atrocious that he needs to be out as well. The Flames got through Anaheim with him in the lineup and he didn’t provide any grit or truculence that the Flames normally need in those game (Travis Hamonic did). With the upcoming Flames schedule (LA, Ottawa, Vancouver) Glass could be a healthy scratch as his physicality isn’t necessarily needed.
By looking at the three players above, I’d say Glass would be the odd man out over the short term, even if only for a few games. The eye test would tell you it should be Troy Brouwer, but it seems he may get the Wideman treatment where he’s in the lineup, not producing, until it’s SO painfully obvious that he needs to be scratched. Lazar is interesting as well. He’s made a case to keep playing, but the way Gulutzan has handled things, I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets scratched, unfortunately. So, in conclusion, this writer will say it’s Tanner Glass, but I could be wrong.
Say Glass does get the press box treatment, who plays with who and where? There’s been a lot of talk about putting Jagr and Bennett together on a line. All well and good, but what about the success Gaudreau, Bennett and Lazar are having together? You could move Monahan back up to the top line with Gaudreau and Lazar and slide Bennett down to the 3rd with Jagr and Versteeg. This set gives the top line speed and a net front presence in Monahan and the 3rd line gets scoring and a little muscle. The 3M line shouldn’t be touched and the 4th, it is what it is. Matt Stajan can slot there just fine and unfortunately for Micheal Ferland he’s back on the bottom, even though he’s played well. Just spit balling here, but this is what I came up with:
Jaromir Jagr joining the Flames lineup presents challenges, but they are challenges a coach should be lucky to have. Glen Gulutzan will have some serious shuffling to do once Jagr gives him the word that he’s ready to go and someone won’t be happy when it happens. Jagr hasn’t played in any of the Flames games so far this season and he hasn’t given any indication when he will suit up. If I were to guess, I’d say Saturday against the Canucks. There’s no inside info that makes me think that, it’s just a guess.
Who do you think should be scratched or sent down once Jagr comes back? Let us know in our poll below.
Who Gets The Boot When Jagr Is Ready?
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