So you want to be a Flames fan?

AbandonShip

In the wake of 11 straight losses and the Flames continued success, I think it’s safe to say that people said a lot of things they might have wanted to take back in the cold light of a December morning.

Life is full of regret, and spending three hours of any given Saturday watching your favourite team get it handed to them like that is going to make you feel as though you’ve lived a few lifetimes’ worth of it. A sampling of the more immediately regrettable things uttered in anger and sadness after the recent lashing at the hands of the Blackhawks follows:

oops

don't!

mistake

I don’t point these out to ridicule the Nation members who said them. These were people who were dealt huge mental and emotional blows after years of suffering already, and consequently it’s difficult to cast blame. Things can only be taken so far and for so long before someone says something crazy, like, “Maybe I should become a Flames fan.”

Listen to yourselves.

A Flames fan, really? When in the last 20 years has being a Flames fan been in any way desirable? Maybe you say the mid-2000s, when they went on that Stanley Cup run. But that’s about it, isn’t it? One season in which the Flames actually did something besides perform decently in the regular season and get smoked in the playoffs. Which, let’s not forget, the Oilers did as well, and more recently, than Calgary.

But let’s say you’re actually dumb enough to follow through with this, which I would hope you aren’t, but you never know I guess. Here’s what you can expect to see as a newly minted Flames fan:

Ugly hockey

“Oh boo hoo hoo we got killed by the best team in the league! We’re never gonna be good!” – Literally all Albertans by the end of this season

Okay sure the Oilers are still technically in their rebuild but they’re more than a few years into it at this point. Remember all the losing over the last several campaigns? Sure you do. That’s why someone had to come talk you off a ledge on Saturday. Well, Calgary is currently in Year 2 of its rebuild.

And please don’t take the current standings, which show Calgary very highly ranked in the Western Conference, because one must also consider this:

nooooope

That’s the league sorted by score-adjusted possession numbers from the bottom up (done before the Flames last few recent wins, which didn’t change much. You’ll notice the Flames are 29th in the league. For the record, the Oilers are 18th.

Rebuilding teams are built to lose a lot for a short time (or at least it’s meant to be a short time; sorry for bringing that up), so basically the Flames can’t even do that right. If you went back and video edited all these games to exclude the goals, you’d reasonably conclude that Calgary was getting smoked 7-1 almost every time out.

I find Flames games dismal to watch, goals aside. I can’t understand why you’d want to sign up for that.

A rebuild

PaperBag

Watching your team give up a field goal and an extra point on home ice is always a gut punch, no doubt about that. You can chalk a lot of that up to the Oilers just not having the lineup depth that the Blackhawks do, and getting some weirdly bad goaltending from guys whose career averages suggest they’re a lot better than what we’ve seen this year.

Remember all that “99 problems but a save ain’t one” stuff about Ben Scrivens? That was only 11 months ago, and everyone’s all of a sudden abandoning ship on the guy because he’s had a bad 10 games or whatever it is to start the season.

The rest of the Oilers are a mishmash of quickly declining veterans and still-developing youth, with one real center and no real defensemen. Wow, they’re losing? Who could have guessed that would happen to a goalie with those minor roster problems in front of him?

Here’s the thing: That’s kind of what the Flames are right now. They have two Norris-caliber defensemen, it’s true, but their No. 1 center is a second-year player whose playing well above expectations (see also: well above his head). The Flames are an enviable team? Let’s pull up the scoring numbers and have a look: a recent win finally allowed someone who’s not a top-pairing defenseman to pull into second on the team in scoring, ahead of TJ Brodie. Congratulations to Jiri Hudler, who gets sheltered more than a very fortunate stray dog. Beyond that it’s rookie Johnny Gaudreau (who’s great and entertaining and all, but he’s not nor will he every be Taylor Hall on that left side) and the ghost of Curtis Glencross’s career to round out the team’s top-six in scoring. Dennis Wideman’s next, Paul Byron’s after that, and those are all the Flames in double digits.

Which is more than the Oilers, but please recall the Flames have a PDO of 102.4 (third-best in the league). Edmonton, meanwhile, is dead last at 96.8. 

And what this does is trick idiots into thinking a team is good. Colorado in 2010, Dallas in 2011, Minnesota in 2012, the Maple Leafs in 2013, Colorado again in 2014. These are all teams that won despite terrible possession percentages before ultimately collapsing in one hilarious way or another, all the while insisting that the laws of corsi did not apply to them because (fill in the blank). For the Flames, it’s that they “work hard.” They might, but know who else works hard? Every other team.

All of which means…

No more comebacks

It’s so fun to watch your team come back from down multiple goals in the third period! Wow, so great! The Flames do it a lot because they’re 6-6-0 when trailing after 40 this season and that is fun.

What’s not fun is watching your team not-come-back from down multiple goals in the third period and instead flail around helplessly as far superior sides play keep-away and laugh at them for the final 20. And for the Flames, that’s going to start happening a lot more when those above-mentioned PDOs normalize, which they will.

They’re coming back in all these games because Jonas Hiller and Kari Ramo are giving them great goaltending and they’re going up against guys like Scott Clemmensen kind of a lot. You could score three goals in 20 minutes against Scott Clemmensen no matter who you put in front of him. Scott Clemmensen should have been out of the league years ago.

The Flames aren’t good enough to keep giving up 57 percent possession and win every night because no one in hockey history has been. Not unless you have Dominic Hasek in net and Wayne Gretzky up front (they don’t).

All this does, then, is lull fans and potentially management alike into thinking they’ve figured out The Formula, which they uncategorically have not, and ascribing all this huge meaning and personal pride to results which are unrepeatable.

The strong potential for doubling down

DoubleDown

If the Flames keep this up for, say, another month or two, they’ll be hard pressed to collapse so badly that they’ll actually miss the playoffs no matter how hard they fall apart down the stretch (which, by the way, they 100 percent will). That, in turn, might lead Brad Treliving to start going out and trying to acquire the Hard Work kind of player that has brought this team so much success so early on in the rebuild.

But what this ignores is that Hard Work players are also Not Good players, as a general rule: They appear to work hard because they don’t have the talent to make a difference otherwise. They certainly don’t overwhelm with skill. Know what that reminds me of? The Edmonton teams of four or five years ago, prior to all the No. 1 picks. Those teams worked their asses off, and missed the playoffs constantly.

The difference is Calgary is young and Edmonton is old. At least, in theory, that’s the difference. But if you have a lot of guys who have to work hard as kids — and believe me, guys like Josh Jooris and Lance Bouma aren’t in the NHL because they’re going to score a ton of goals over a long period of time — well, that’s both good and bad. Good they’re working hard, but bad they have to do that much to still get this hopelessly outpossessed.

If the Flames decide they’ve figured it out (which I assume they will, because it happens all the time in this league), they might set their own rebuild back a few years. 

And boy, Oilers fans, doesn’t that sound familiar?

Stubbornness

Stubborn

Another side effect of all the winning and sterling performances from their top players is that the Flames will continue to do what they’ve done for years: Hold onto their few valuable veterans until they are devoid of value. I have no doubt that Mark Giordano will get a boat full of money dropped into his back yard by a helicopter full of money this summer when the Flames re-sign him, but the fact is he’s wasting the last few useful years of his career in Calgary, shepherding a lot of rookies to what you can bet will be a few more losing seasons at least. The guy’s already 31. Calgary will probably hold onto him until he’s just the name brand “Mark Giordano” instead of the defenseman who would have won the Norris last season had he not gotten hurt.

Yeah, it’s a different administration in charge now, but they did this with Bouwmeester and Iginla, and held onto Mike Cammalleri last season before he walked this summer without any compensation coming back to them. If NHL hockey in 2014 is about maximizing assets, well, that’s something this Flames club doesn’t do well enough.

At least the Oilers had the decency to burn it to the ground as deliberately as possible. And at least they’re trending in the right direction.

The Flames say they use analytics but that doesn’t explain why or how they signed Deryk Engelland to a three-year deal this summer, traded for Brandon Bollig, and continue to employ Brian McGrattan. The Oilers actually use them, and did nothing but make smart signings this summer (though the less said about the Nikita Nikitin acquisition, the better, obviously). I already wrote this on Puck Daddy, but the only problem the Oilers actually have at this point is that Kevin Lowe is in charge, and I consider it a wash between he and Brian Burke as team presidents. The jury’s still out on both Treliving and MacTavish, as far as I’m concerned, but Edmonton has made a bigger show of surrounding their guy with smart people, which leads me to believe they’re actually doing that.

In conclusion

It’s a free country. You can cheer for whichever awful Albertan team you like. But jumping from one to the other leaves you open to wedgies, name-calling, and perhaps most important, the possibility that you’re going to choose wrong.

You want to be a Flames fan all of a sudden? I’m not sure you’re emotionally ready to go through that. Not again, anyway.

  • Thumper5135

    Lambert…all I can say is that true Oiler and Flame fans hate each other. That is the way it has always been and always will be. I’m a Flaes fan and I don’t want fair weathered Oiler fans to come to our side just like the true Oiler fan doesn’t want our fair weathered fans jumping on their bandwagon. I will say that both groups of true fans hate the actions of those types of fans. But I have to say that both groups of fans hate each other…..we still respect each other. I feel bad that the true Oiler fan has to go through their current management gaffs and blunders. It is funny to watch the Oiler management constantly put their head in the sand thinking that everything is going according to plan while the fans have to be punished.

    All you are doing is trying to get support for your misguided thoughts about the Flames on ON. But it doesn’t seem to be working for you. Or is your head in the sand like the Oiler management?

  • Derzie

    Just when the stats bunch were making process, an angry stats-fan-boy jumps ship from the winning Flames to look for fellow believers on ON. Denial is a cruel mistress. Games ebb and flow but Corsi and PDO say next to nothing about this team’s future. Alberta is the home of the stat killers. Edmonton & Calgary are making a mockery of the stats and the believers are up in arms. What they should be is digging in to find out why and coming up with new stats to explain it. Nice try Mr Lambert. Sometimes a hypothesis is just that.

    • McDavid's Comet

      I dont think Tyler Dellow would agree with you and he is the best advanced statistical analysis mind money can buy,the Oilers brought in the best of the best before anyone else could scoop him up, like they trumped everyone when they scooped up Dallas Eakins and Justin Schultz.

      I dont think the Flames have an advanced stats Pro like the Oiler use.If they did they would be ready for the collapse their baselines stats will soon suffer.

      The Flames arent progressive or cutting edge enough to be using advanced statistical analysis,they are back in the 8os locked into a Brian Burke Groundhog Day.

      The Oilers have Dellow to help them,who do the Flames have?

  • Thumper5135

    According to all of the stat lovers like Lambert, if you look at the PDO for the Western Conference, LA isn’t going to be making the playoffs this year. So does that mean they should stRt tanking to get into the draft sweepstakes? Is thee going to be huge trades done in La over the next couple of weeks?

    Or is the next PDO Listing going to show a completely different ranking for the Western Conference? Otherwise the odds makers in Vegas are going to have to make changes to who is going to win the Stanley Cup. The only stats the when it comes down to it is the win-loss-overtime loss columns which are reflected in the points standings.

  • Andy7190

    The Flames suck….they are lazy and are on the right side of lucky street now, they are riding off the charts Corsi and PDOs and their Fenwick has been tracking upwards.None of this is sustainable.There is no prior baseline for Calgary to be able to reliably predict these numbers sustaining themselves long term.

    There defense is made up of Journeyman or cast-offs,they have one mediocre young core piece and nothing else to build off of.

    The Flames will not make the Playoffs,I bet the Oilers advanced stats man Dellow can show everyone why these advanced statistics the Flames are showing us are happening and why they are Fluke or luck.

    Burke is over the hill and has lost touch with reality,Hartley is like a well dressed Torterella on Prozac who sends his cheap-shotting players out to bully opponents like cowards.

    The Flames are divers who have begun to turtle away from the tough going,they are not truculent anymore,they have softened up like Burke.They now dive and cheap-shot with the best of them.I am beginning to think that Lowe would take the Barnyard Burner title now since Burkes regression.

    I would like to see what Dellow thinks of these funny Calgary statistics.What he sees happening in the 2nd half of this season with their numbers.

    • McDavid's Comet

      LOL.

      That was a valiant attempt but you gotta up your trolling game a little bit more. You have to blend some fact with the fiction. Even the most optimistic of us see how completely ridiculous this is…too obvious to believe, too easy to ignore!

  • McDavid's Comet

    When reporting that Hall may be traded in the summer, Darren Dreger said:

    “If the untouchable label has been placed on the fortunate few”

    He was indicating that until now a Hall trade was not an option for Oilers management.

    But why does Dreger refer to the untouchables on the Oilers as being fortunate? If I was Hall or anyone on the Oilers, I would be ecstatic to be traded and go to a team that has a better chance of getting to the playoffs (which is every other team in the league).

    If Hall got traded, I’m sure Eberle and Nuge would be envious, not feeling fortunate.

    What a joke.

    • McDavid's Comet

      Just because Dreger reports it doesn’t mean it’s set in stone. I believe it’s media sensationalism to whip a fan base into a frenzy that are already frothing at the mouth. I’ll believe it when I se it. It would happen ONLY if he asks for it. Although at this point I couldn’t blame him……. very disappointing.

      • Andy7190

        It’s not that crazy. Hall plays a position in which they actually have some depth. Hall is the one player on the team that could truley bring back a solid C or a top pair D.

        Hall is rapidly approaching ‘Rick Nash in Columbus’ territory.

  • I have no use for flames or their fans. I do credit the flames players and coaches for their style of play. They, unlike the Oilers are playing an honest game.

    Both the flames players, coaches and management have exposed the utter dis-function and incompetence of the oil.

    • McDavid's Comet

      Sorry dude, so sick and tired of the oiler ” oh whoa is me ” attitude. Way to much bitch and moaning as of late. Don’t get me wrong I feel the same way as everybody else; it’s just there only so much you can do on this website before it’s becomes a broken record. Absolutely every one has to start voicing the opinion directly at the oilers customer service or better yet stop supporting the team financially.

  • Reidja

    I’m posting this over on ON too and then maybe I’ll stop responding to Lamberts articles. They really are like car crashes sometimes. Hard to look away… Take care Lambert:

    My problem with Lambert is that his takes aren’t as well considered as he thinks they are. His mind is closed and, i’m sorry to say, smaller for it. It’s kind of sad to me because he puts his writing in front of so many people that he will inevitably receive a tonne of vitriol for his half baked ideas.

    One example, in his last 5 things he concluded that Gio and Brodie are so good together, so much better than their individual numbers, because of thier “styles” being complimentary. Did it ever occurr to him that this is exactly contradictory to his opinion that the Flames are actually a bad team despite their great results? He’s basing his main thesis on numbers that he never really delves into but then points to “style” when he wants to explain something he doesn’t understand with his limited handle on hockey metrics. It’s perplexing and hard to read because it is illogical and internally inconsistent.

    lambert will grow up one day. Don’t be too hard on him while he tries to figure it out. We all have different journies to self actualization.

  • McDavid's Comet

    This article must be a sobering reminder to Flames fans and I have nothing against them or their team.

    Colorado looked like world beaters last year. Remember?

  • The Last Big Bear

    My main problem with lambert is that he just makes **** up, as in completely fabricates things to get upset about.

    For example, he once expounded at length about how Burke and Treliving would be unable to work together. Their personalities are too divergent, and that there would be a toxic atmosphere in management that would trickle down and ruin the season.

    Here he is telling us about how their personalities clash, and they won’t be able to work together effectively, when HE HAS NEVER EVEN MET these men. This coming hot on the heels of Burke interviewing and offering a long-term position to Treliving, and Treliving leaving his existing job to accept that position.

    He literally just made up a story, on the basis of nothing at all, and then wrote an article about how terrible that thing is.

    In ^this^ piece of trash, he’s lamenting how the Flames management are going to be deluded into thinking that they’re real contenders, and are going to make short-sighted moves at te deadline to improve their chances, and then hold on to their declining assets. As a consequence of this, the rebuild is already ruined.

    A story which is completely, 100% fabricated in the mind of Ryan Lambert. He literally just made it up on the spot.

    This is how he writes.

    Think of a bad thing that could happen. Pretend that it has ready happened, or will inevitably happen. Bemoan the event happening (even though you just made it up). Act as if everyone else is a fool.

    I like his college hockey prospect updates though. I think he clearly has an eye for college talent that will/won’t translate to the NHL. I’d like to see more of that from him. And less of his troll jobs.

  • McDavid's Comet

    Excellent article, guy I am not familiar with.

    It’s strange to see such reason and balance coming from Alberta at a time like this.

    You pretty much called it like it is.

  • vetinari

    Nice if someone mentioned in the slagging match that Calgary is the second cheapest team in the league, which is what you expect from a rebuild, where as Edmonton has, from a cap point of view, has finished it’s rebuild, it’s got about 4 mill in space left, mid way up the table, again where a team with three 1st picks who’ve all aged out of their ELC’s should be, of course they are also supposed to be heading into the playoffs and going into their prime as a team.

    Calgary have the cap space to add Hall, Eberle and RNH to their line up tommorow, I’m not sure they’d bother though.

    • The Last Big Bear

      After following the progress of the Oilers and the Flames over the last two years, I have the following observations;

      1. Burke is far more capable that Lowe.
      2. Treleving cannot be any worse than MacT.
      3. Hartley is light years ahead of Eakins.
      4. Both Flames goalies are better than the Oilers goalies.
      5. No Oiler defenseman could crack the Flames top 4.
      6. Hall and Nuge at this point, are better than Monohan and Gaudreau. This could change in a few years.
      7. Flames scouting and player development is significantly better than the Oilers.
      8. The last place Oilers are near the top of their cap, while the top 3-4 Flames are closer to the lower end of their cap.
      9. Flames goaltending depth has Ortio, Gillies and MacDonald, while the Oilers only have Flames cast-off Brossoit.
      10. Oilers have Nurse coming up on defence, which is quite a bit better than anything the Flames have.
      11. For forward depth, the Oilers have nothing to really get excited about, while the Flames have Bennett, Granlund, Jooris, Ferland and Poirier.
      12. Flames veteran presence and culture is far more conducive to showing young players how to play the game the right way. eg: back checking, blocking shots, standing up for teammates, being accountable.

      Unless something close to miraculous happens to the Oiler management they will continue to flounder, while the Flames make a steady progression towards a playoff spot.

      In my opinion, management, scouting and player development are the most important aspects of building a successful franchise. The Oilers have none of the above.

      • Burnward

        No real disagreement, I might quibble with comparing Gaudrau and monohan, both ELC,s at 1,800,000 with 12,000,000 worth of forwards who are supposed to be at their peak.

        What amazes me is that people seem to think the Oilers are rebuilding, they arnt, not with 18,000,000 on their top line. The rebuild is now over, this is what you get, the Oilers have one of the worst prospect pools in the league, there isn’t anything coming up from the farm to take them to the promised land, they’re damn near capped out and have almost nothing to show for it, the incompetence
        is staggering really.

        I’m no flames fan but they are one of the cheapest teams in the league, have one of the deepest prospect pools in the league, they are just starting a rebuild, what is happening right now is just gravy.

        • Burnward

          Totally agree. With the Oilers current cap situation any future player additions will only be possible by moving other players out. This is going to be very difficult for a team that has holes everywhere.

      • Oilers4ever

        Monohan and Gaudreau ever better than Hall or Nuge. Slap yourself and wake the @#$$ up. I’ll agree the Flames D and goaltending is way better and maybe scouting to. All those forwards you listed as being better I say we “wait and see”. Anyone can think their young players will be great till they fall flat on their faces and fail. Time will tell. Monahan is a good centre but he doesnt nor will he ever have the vision Nuge has. Your delusional if you think otherwise. And Taylor Hall is miles above Gaudreau. Let me know if he ever comes close to 80 points. Not happening.

        Lets stage a 3 on 3 game forwards only. I’ll take Hall Nuge and Ebs against any 3 Flames forwards they have today…

        • Andy7190

          Maybe scouting!!!! Gaudreau’s a fourth round pick for Christ sake, when was the last time Edmonton got anything out of the forth round that made it to the show, let alone vied for rookie of the year.

          If you are going to compare two kids earning 1,800,000 to two established players earning 12,000,000 at least have the decency to factor in age, salary and success of the teams, as of right now Gaudreau is outplaying Hall, in as much as Gaudreua is cheaper and has got his team into playoff contention.

  • Andy7190

    Playoff hockey is
    playing playoff teams
    in Reg play.
    No 4X4 OT.
    No Shootouts.

    Regulation wins versus playoff teams.
    CGY 3 of 15gm vs playoff teams.
    EDM 3 of 16gm vs playoff teams.

    You want platter that others get there best results with
    Gagner 44% better with Gagner.
    Nilsson 77% better with nilsson
    Cogliano 78% better with Cogliano.

    Tambo removed from team.
    Souray
    Stoll
    Greene
    Torres
    Nilsson
    Glencross
    Brodziak
    Cogliano

    08-09 could have been
    Penner-Horcoff-Hemsky
    Torres-Stoll-Cole
    Glencross-Brodziak-Pisani
    Nilsson-Gagner-Cogliano

    Souray-Gilbert
    Grebeshkov-Smid
    Staios-Greene

    Roloson
    Garon

    MacT replaced Tambo in his desire to purge VCR stench.
    but got rid of a great sports mind who turned Switzeland hockey into top 5.

    Had the best point total in the last 5 years.

    Took over a EPL team and has them top 3 in table.

    Eakins (Leafs trained) worse results than coach replaced.

    Eakins made Ference Capatin. Learned from (CGY Flames)

    MacT cup Final.
    (VCR; TOR; CGY trained) the 3 worst CDN Playoff success teams.

    Purge the (VCR; TOR; CGY) stench!

  • redhot1

    How many websites is this $^%” re-t-ard going to infect with his shi//y writing?
    Now he’s trying to say winning isn’t – what – righteous b/c the PDO 5×5 v the soft opps in sheltered Volhammers are in the House of the Rising Sun.
    You nerds are ruining hockey to the point you can’t even enjoy WINNING.
    F/k off already. Your mom is calling youse for dinner.

  • Andy7190

    But seriously:
    Worst. ‘Writer.’ Ever.
    I’ve barfed up better word-collections after 3-day benders involving bathtub gin and $10/day Asian lady-boys.

  • passelin

    OKC Barons is 14-4-2-2, coach Nelson is doing a great job down there. They won 8 straight and shut out Comets (top Western team) 1-0 this week.

    Barons don’t boast any top picks but they are playing well as a team. Nelson is a good coach, promote him or he will walk away to another team next year.

    Oilers management don’t know a good thing in front of them until it’s gone.

    Eakins is a lousy coach, he can’t teach this team anything.

    They just want to tank for good draft picks next June.

    I always cheer for Canadian teams, Vancouver, Montreal, Toronto and Calgary are playing well.

  • Andy7190

    Who cares about Corsi score?

    Only wins count, score more goals for than against is how you win games.

    Calgary win games.

    Oilers has possession in opponent zone but they don’t score, they over passing and turn pucks over. They give up too many odd man rushes and they scores against them. You cannot win games that way.

  • Lumley

    Maybe some nice person can help me out. I’m old. Not real up to date with fancy stats. Can someone pleas explain to me this Corsi. Is it this way, if you’re in the ice and your team attempts a shot in the direction of the net, that is good and my Corsi goes up?

    This might seem like a stupid question but It is in fact a question.

    Thanks in advance. I would request one of the regulars who are properly logged in to help. Thanks.

    And while we’re at it what is FENWICK and PDO? And zone starts

  • Ramskull

    Just another Lambert article where he tries to come off as the smartest guy in the room and instead he comes off as the smartest guy in his moms basement.

    He’s just pissed he couldn’t get a full refund on his Flames McDavid jersey.

  • Andy7190

    “At least the Oilers had the decency to burn it to the ground as deliberately as possible. And at least they’re trending in the right direction.”

    Wait…. what? Who in their right mind calls this the right direction for the Oilers??

    The Oilers have some serious work to do, maybe the team could learn a thing or two from the Flames about work ethic. This deliberate burning to the ground strategy clearly isn’t the answer! Let’s suck it up and work on a new plan.

    I can’t waste my time reading this guy’s stuff anymore. No logic and no insight. FIRE LAMBERT.

  • petrklimashelmet

    It has been 9 years since Calgary had any shot of winning the cup! They should have started their rebuild then and got value for their assests. Why do people pretend that the last 9 years have not been wasted by the Flames?

    If you want to be a bandwagon jumper, why pick a lowsy team like Calgary? Aside from their Coach, Giordano and Hiller, I have no envy. There are many respectable teams you could choose from where you can watch hockey at the highest level instead.

    Me, I will take the Oilers.

    • YFC Prez

      So if Calgary should have started their fire sale of assets and rebuild earlier (and I agree to be clear) then I assume you would agree that’s where the oilers are now, a lousy team almost capped out with little in the cupboard.
      Presumably Edmonton should start their fire sale now and start the re rebuild.

    • YFC Prez

      How many teams have a fire sale the year after making the SC finals?

      They were trying to keep the momentum from ’04 in order to rekindle the fan base and ensure season ticket sales. Not the best long term plan, but they hadn’t been successful for quite a few years prior, so you can see why they’d want to ride the wave for a couple years.

      Iginla’s decline was an awkward time for the whole team/management group, and once he was finally gone, things started heading in the right direction.

      I wouldn’t call it a wasted 9 years, maybe not ideal. It certainly wasn’t the tail chasing we’ve seen in Edmonton over that time, by any means.