2012-2013 NHL Saved – Short Season Arrives

The waiting finally ended much to the delight of hardcore fans, owners, players, and probably the most thankful, all the people who work in the service industry who’ve taken a hit with the absence of hockey. It’s true, in a country that claims the game, no NHL leaves the land a bit quiet, almost too quiet.

The NHL didn’t win any friends with this work stoppage. Perhaps not fresh in the minds of fans, but certainly within memory, the notion of no NHL left many perplexed and annoyed. The question of course, is how many of the fans who swore to give up everything hockey will eventually come crawling back.

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November Games Cancelled

Surprising nobody, NHL games for the entire month of November has been cancelled. The rumor is December we’ll see hockey. Most notable events around December Winter Classic where tons of money is thought to be changing hands. THe issue I have with that is it’s merely one event that only benefits a handful of teams. Yes, the league itself will get a big boost in ratings and attention, but the league as a whole doesn’t necessarily see that benefit. So I do’nt think the Winter Classic is necessarily the lynchpin in the whole operation.

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NHL Lockout

No hockey. Hooray :(

But unlike TSN and their 6 hours of coverage of nothing in particular, we’re going to shut off the lights. No point covering the worse professional sports league when it comes to work stoppages.

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Calgary Flames Add Bob Hartley as Coach

More of the Same

Since Darryl Sutter left in his role as coach (where he is most competent) there has been a revolving door of sense in the Flames organization. First it was the promotion of Jim Playfair who didn’t perform up to the expectations fans and management were used to under D. Sutter. Out he went in short order. Then Mike Keenan took the reigns and that had its moments, but ultimate after a year and a bit Keenan was showed the door.

During Keenan’s reign Sutter began his dismantling of the Flames in every way shape and form. Couple that with new musings that the players themselves weren’t keen on listening to the coach and the coach wasn’t keen on coaching the players, and you got the sense the team needed more than a new coach to complete the puzzle.

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Flames Sign Roman Cervenka from KHL to Add Depth at Center

There were few rumors that picked up on this transaction before it happened. Last week the Flames added depth down the middle for relatively little risk. Sure, Flames fans were scoffing at the 3.7 million price tag of an unproven European hockey player, but that contract is incentive laden. I for one know nothing about Cervenka, know he played one good playoff series in the KHL, and looked better when playing with the likes of Jaromir Jagr last season.

Think about this. Name one KHL player who’s come over to the NHL and performed well? I can’t think of one. Radulov and Jagr don’t count because they were NHLers before. But the ball is in Cervenka’s court while the Flames assume little risk. That should bode well for fans questioning the salary. Here’s Eric Francis on the deal.

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Sutter Let Go: Changes Abound as Season Closes

Once Sutter’s contract ends at the end of June the Calgary Flames and coach Sutter will part ways. This paves the way for a new ethos in the organization. Now, this is merely the first step of many to revive the club. Fact remains that there have been a few coaches coming thru, many with similar styles, and none of faired better than Mike Keenan….

More analysis of the upcoming changes to the club to come.

Dave Lowry, it was announced, will also not be back. No word on associate coach Hartsburg.

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Season Closes With Win: Calgary 5 – Anaheim 2

Well the Flames ended the season with two wins, but overall it’s one of the worst in recent memory. Calgary chalked up a measly 90 points good for 10th (or 9th) in the Western Conference.

There were a few bright spots throughout the year, we’ll cover that in a post-season article. For the most part it was biter disappointment that should lead to some of the most turnover in the lineup during the off season in some time.

This afternoon’s tilt was boring for all the normal reasons. Two teams playing for no purpose, afternoon game, everyone looking for a quick exit.

Akim Aliu obviously had different ideas.

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Another Atrocious CBC Game: Calgary 2 – Vancouver 3

Just two thoughts after yet another loss from the Flames.

1. I didn’t think Karlsson was that bad. Despite the horrid commentary on him he was decent. The only issue was, Leland Irving is decent too. I was hoping Karlsson would steal the game and prove his worth, but I’m slowly coming out of his camp.

2. What a disgusting display of play by play and color commentary from CBC. Mark Kelly is garbage, but both he and the color man have a love affair with Vancouver. If you love Luongo so much just marry the dude! It’s times like this I’m happy that the Conservative government wants to pull CBC funding. Just plain pathetic coverage through and through.

Oh yea, Flames suck too.

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Flames Gift Wrapped Win: Calgary 5 – Dallas

Back and forth they went with the Flames finally hanging on for the win with PP goals, weak goals against, and everything in between. 5 games left, 3 points out, chances are slim. Do you still have hope? I’m off the wagon…. Heck, i had free tickets to go to the game and turned them down.

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Nope. Calgary 1 – Dallas 4

Even at their best the Flames can’t compete. They threw everything they had at Dallas and fell short. That should be indicative to management that when everyone is playing at their ‘best’ this team is and 11th place team. Changes? Never. So long as Flames fans continue buying tickets to watch this team and the owners make money, there’s no huge changes coming down the pipe. Next year we may have a new face or two, but largely status quo. Hooray. < -- Sarcasm.

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