Archive for the ‘calgary flames news’ Category

The following note has been sent to the 30,688 Members of the NHL Fans’ Association

17 Aug

Welcome to our 134 new Members from the United States, Canada, Slovakia, Malta and Australia.

We are witnessing, again, two groups of greedy and ungrateful spoiled brats at war.

Two parties are fighting over the money we, the fans, annually dump into their laps for the luxury of watching the highest level of hockey on the planet.

The economic divide has been established between the NHL and the NHLPA in the latest round of collective bargaining. Both sides are content with maintaining a salary cap and revenue sharing system, however, the league is pushing the players to accept 43% of hockey related revenues (HRR), down significantly from the current 57% the players collectively earn each season. The players’ counter proposal calls for “delinking” the HRR from the salary cap. This alternative to the floating amount of income would see a fixed rate of growth for the players’ share over the next three seasons. In season one, the fixed increase towards the players’ financial share would increase by 2%; in year two increase by 4%; and, in year three increase by 6%. In year four, the players propose they hold an option to revert back to the full 57% against the floating or sliding increases/decreases in HRR.

Both proposals (NHL and NHLPA) contain additional, less contentious proposed terms, but let’s focus on revenue sharing and some other new ideas.

Both proposals are ridiculous. The league’s proposal goes too far, calling for a massive rollback in players’ salaries, equal to more than 24% of the players’ existing share of HRR. The players’ proposal is just as silly. It does not go far enough and is a temporary business solution that leaves owners with a cloudy financial future, and possibly nothing gained in year four and beyond.

It’s no surprise that both parties’ are playing a typical bargaining game, but let’s remember this is only the pregame warm-up and a few lightweights are posturing at the red line. These are the early days in the negotiations. The third period is September 10-15 and overtime is beyond that point.

For those of us sitting squarely on the fence, I believe a reasonable solution exists.

Both parties should agree to roll back salaries, to a level that is acceptable in the professional sports sector. To be fair to both sides, the players’ share of HRR should gradually roll back to a 50-50 spilt with owners. Each year, beginning this season, the players’ share of HRR should be reduced by 1%. After six years, the 50-50 split would be achieved. The players would barely notice the financial pain and the owners would be assured of greater gains in a few short years.

For the sake of all stakeholders in the game, especially the fans, the length of the new CBA should be 10 years.

The idea floating around about allowing teams to trade cap space is a good idea. It allows those clubs close to challenging for the Cup to make a push and rewards frugal clubs, who are perennially under the cap limit, to restock in other ways. It also increases player movement, which has been steadily declining over the years.

Penalties and fines for serious on-ice infractions should be determined by a third party group comprised of a player representative, a league representative and three elected fans (paid a per diem for their services). A league official (currently Brendan Shanahan) overseeing these duties does not foster a strong partnership between the league and players.

The fans, who are the primary stakeholders in the game, need a voice in the direction of the NHL. Rule committees need fan representation. It is time for the league and players to recognize that intelligent, unbiased fans exist and can contribute nicely to the game. The battling parties need to do something significant for the fans during these negotiations.

Let’s hope the greedy and ungrateful spoiled brats embattled before us come to their senses before overtime begins.

Jim Boone


Flames lose Jokinen, Moss, Hannan and Kostopoulos

07 Jul

Olli Jokinen signed a two-year deal, worth $4.5 million per season with the Winnipeg Jets. David Moss has been snapped up by the Phoenix Coyotes. The Flames also have not re-signed free agents Scott Hannan and Tom Kostopoulos.

Is Roman Cervenka and Jiri Hudler enough to replace Moss and Jokinen down the middle? Is Dennis Wideman enough to replace Hannan? (yes) How come Jay Bouwmeester is still a Flame?

The Flames have #3.5M left on the cap, and still need to pay Sven Baertschi his $1.5M. So they’ll likely need to shed some salary if they are planning on making any more moves.


Flames sign Jiri Hudler, $16M over 4 years

02 Jul

“Jiri Hudler is a highly skilled and dynamic offensive player,” said Flames General Manager Jay Feaster. “He is one of the very best goal scorers in the NHL at even strength and he puts a very high percentage of his shots on net, generating scoring chances for himself and rebound opportunities for his teammates. He fits our need to upgrade and improve our skill and we are very pleased to have him on board.”

Hudler has played 409 career games all with the Detroit Red Wings. Over his seven NHL seasons, he has accumulated 87 goals, 127 assists for 214 points and 160 penalty minutes. Last season Hudler scored a career high 25 goals and added 25 assists for 50 points and 42 penalty minutes in 81 games with the Red Wings. Hudler won a Stanley Cup as a member of the Detroit Red Wings in 2008.

So let’s speculate some lines  at this particular moment in time, shall we?

Glencross    Cammalleri        Iginla
Tanguay       Hudler                 Cervenka
Baertshi        Backlund            Stempniak
Comeau        Jones/Stajan    Jackman

Flames sign Dennis Wideman, Stempniak, Sarich, Jones, Comeau

30 Jun

The Flames acquired Wideman from the Washington Capitals and signed him to a five-year deal worth $26.25 million — 5.25M/year – making him the second-highest paid defenceman on the team. Soon to be the highest?? I guess we’ll have to wait for the trade market to dictate the future of Jay Bouwmeester.

The Calgary Flames have re-signed right-winger Lee Stempniak and defenceman Cory Sarich to a pair of two-year contract extensions. Stempniak will earn US$5 million, while Sarich agreed to a deal worth $4 million.

With Friday’s re-signing of Cory Sarich, the Calgary Flames now have nine defencemen on one-way contracts, a total that doesn’t reflect T.J. Brodie, who is still on his entry-level (two-way) deal. Here are the other nine rearguards in Calgary:

  • Jay Bouwmeester $6.68M
  • Dennis Wideman $5.25M
  • Mark Giordano $4.02M
  • Anton Babchuk $2.50M
  • Cory Sarich $2.00M
  • Chris Butler $1.25M
  • Derek Smith $.775M
  • Brett Carson $.575M
  • Clay Wilson $.525M

If I were a betting man, I’d say you Calgary blue line in 2012-13 will look like this:

  1. Dennis Wideman – Cory Sarich
  2. Mark Giordano – Chris Butler
  3. T.J. Brodie – Derek Smith

Uh oh.

The Flames also signed centre Blair Jones to a two-year deal worth $1.3 million, and Blake Comeau to a one-year deal worth $1.25M.


The Flames pick centre Mark Jankowski 21st overall

23 Jun

But what blockbuster deals did they make you ask? Where is Jay Bouwmeester playing next season? Jokinen? Jagr? Well – at the moment – Calgary, Calgary, and Philly.

Who’s this Jankowski you ask? He is a college player, Stanstead College, in Quebec. Although his 53 goals and 93 points in 57 games sounds impressive, remember that is collegiate hockey. Which is way different than the CHL.

“This guy is a long way away. This guy is raw. We want to make sure we handle his development properly. Whether its two years or three years or four years, that when he gets here he’s ready to go and we’ll play that as it comes.” – Flames Assistant General Manager of Player Personnel, John Weisbrod.

The Flames did make one deals, they traded their first round pick (14th overall) to the Buffalo Sabres in exchange for Buffalo’s first round pick (21st overall) and Buffalo’s second round pick (42nd overall) in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.

I can’t see how that is a bad deal. I guess we’ll know when we see how good Buffalo’s 14th pick turns out to be. Remember this name: Zemgus Girgensons. That is a real name.

2 42    Patrick Sieloff (DEFENCE) – USA – U18, USHL

If you’re interested, the biggest move of the day involved the host organization, as the Pittsburgh Penguins traded Jordan Staal to the Carolina Hurricanes for Brandon Sutter, the No. 8 pick in the 2012 draft and defense prospect Brian Dumoulin.


Martin Gelinas rounds out your new coaching staff

14 Jun

The Eliminator returns to Calgary, but this time it isn’t as a clutch playoff performer. This time is more as a crutch to get these under-performers into the playoffs.

Gelinas joins head coach Bob Hartley and fellow assistant coach Jacques Cloutier as the trio that will eventually lead the Flames into the promised land. The post-season.

“I’m happy to be back with the team and the city that I know so well,” said Gelinas, who scored three playoff series-clinching goals in 2004 when the Flames came within a win of claiming the Stanley Cup.“I have so many fond memories of my time as a player in Calgary and my family and I have made it our home ever since. I look forward to contributing to Calgary’s success and being part of a winning team.”

Two words Martin. Keep looking.


Flames fire Craig Hartsburg

08 Jun

“At the conclusion of our season, we said that our new coach would be given the privilege to make decisions on his staff,” said Flames General Manager Jay Feaster.

Bob Hartley has already brought Jacques Cloutier on board as his assistant this week.

Was coaching the problem? Clearly not, the Flames have had several different coaches and associate coaches in the three years they’ve missed the playoffs. But will these be the coaches with big enough balls to start cutting veterans? Perhaps that’s the plan.


Survey says… BOB HARTLEY!

31 May

Bob Hartley returns to the NHL as your new head coach. You may remember him as an NHL bench boss from his days with the Quebec Nordiques and the Atlanta Flames (get it? he’s old!)

I for one like the move, because he was the best available coach that I can still kinda stand. But with a core group of players who are almost as old as he is, I’m not sure there is much he can do to change the fate of this team.

Hartley was chosen most often in my very scientific survey, so kudos to you guys. I was surprised that the resigning of Olli was split down the middle, especially since there is no way he’s coming back. And four respondents have no clue, because no… we’re not trading Iginla before the start of next season.


Is Troy Ward in line to be the next coach of the Calgary Flames?

13 May

I guess that this is the (first and only) logical conclusion to jump to, so let’s do it.

Bottom line? I hope not. I don’t like when you bring in a guy who has less experience than most of your players. I think people in general look to someone as a leader if they feel he has a) been there before or b) knows – better than the others involved – how to get out.

Let’s face it, the Flames are in a huge hole. This was their worst season since the lockout. They were just ranked 26th out of 30th on the prospect potential list. They’ve been headed downwards, they have little hope for the future, it’s going to take more than Troy Ward to dig them out of this.


Flames sign some guy you’ve never heard of

02 May

The Calgary Flames announced they have signed centre Roman Cervenka.


Cervenka played the last two years with Avangard Omsk of the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL). During the 2010-11 season he received the top goal scorer award, registering 31 goals in 51 games while playing alongside fellow countryman Jaromir Jagr.

Wait, who? That old guy with the mullet who plays for Philly?

He was also selected to play in the KHL All-Star Game collecting more fan votes than any other player in the league.

Cripes, I could play in the KHL All-Star game.

During 2011-12, the Prague native recorded 23 goals during the regular season while notching a league leading 22 points from 11 goals and 11 assists in 20 playoff games. Cervenka has represented the Czech Republic with the national team on multiple occasions. He earned a bronze medal at the 2005 World Junior Championships. He also played at the 2009 IIHF World Championship and the 2010 Winter Olympics.

Okay, I’ll give him that as I’ve yet to play in the Olympics. But there is still time…

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