Micheal Ferland (Left/Right Wing) - Midseason Grade: B+
Our Individual Grades
Ferland had a strong bounceback season after a down 2015-16 campaign. The biggest reason behind his revival was that he managed to carve out a niche as a player that could both hit and score. When he had the opportunity, Ferland had arguably the best shot on the team and that led him to 15 goals on the season. He was a good fit on the top line as he provided the much needed size and grit that the line needed. The biggest question for me is whether or not he’ll be able to do that for a full season. If he can, terrific, but if the Flames don’t feel that way, I wouldn’t be surprised to see them look elsewhere. Ferland’s new contract will reflect the role the team wants him to have next season.
Micheal Ferland is an excellent complimentary player and is really the only forward on the roster that possesses a perfect combination of both size and skill. He did not produce a lot early in the season when he was stuck down the depth chart with limited ice time, but once he ended up on the top line he really ran with the opportunity. He fit in really well with Gaudreau and Monahan down the stretch and had a strong playoff appearance despite failing to get on the scoreboard in the series. Whether he is on the top line or further down the depth chart next season, Ferland is a really useful player to the Flames and is someone the club should look at locking up for the next 3 to 5 seasons if they can get him at a reasonable rate. A revolutionary idea would be for Ferland to take Brouwer’s spot on the powerplay next season.
This was the Micheal Ferland I was hoping to see since he made his debut against the Canucks in that memorable playoff series. I’ve always championed his offence and this year he delivered. Ferland got top line minutes with Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan and had the best season of his young career. He posted career highs in games played (76), goals (15) and points (25). He adds some needed protection to that top line and he’s added goal scoring to his arsenal, which should continue to expand the more confident he gets with Gaudreau and Monahan. Like Sam, I want to see Micheal Ferland out there on the power play next year. \
Ferland is getting to the point where we know exactly what he is - an upper echelon third liner to a lower level second liner. In an ideal world, the Flames would find an upgrade over him on the second line with Gaudreau and Monahan that can push possession a wee bit better while he can slide in on the second line with Sam Bennett and whomever they find to centre that line. Even if that’s just Matt Stajan, that’s a pretty good third line while leaving a fourth line which could be okay, but that would presumably leave Mark Jankowski at centre with Troy Brouwer on his wing and that just sets Jankowski up in a position where he fails before even given a chance.
Our Final Grade: B
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