It came down to the wire but the final roster has been set and the 2015-2016 Calgary Flames season is about to begin. The single questions fans are asking (since thee Gaudreau signing): will the Flames make the playoffs?

I would say, YES!

The goaltending alone I believe gives the team at minimum 10 extra points. The improvements up front will translate into exciting hockey and more goals. We can only assume that the special teams can go nowhere but up. At the D should remain solid (unless Wideman plays top-line minutes). They’re not a Stanley Cup team, yet, but they’re definitely on the upward trend which is a welcome sight for Flames fans who have endured too many years to count dwelling in the basement of NHL standings.

Things open up with a back-to-back home-at-home series with the Edmonton Oilers, who have a revamped roster as well. All in all, a new kind of hockey is in town with a balanced lineup complete with elite goaltending, star goal scoring, and steady defending. Let’s start the 2016-2017 Cup run folks! Go Flames Go!

The Opening line-up looks like this:


#3 Jyrki Jokipakka (LD)
#5 Mark Giordano (LD)
#6 Dennis Wideman (RD)
#7 TJ Brodie (RD)
#8 Nicklas Grossmann (LD)
#27 Dougie Hamilton (LD)
#29 Deryk Engelland (RD)
#61 Brett Kulak (LD)


#10 Kris Versteeg (RW)
#11 Mikael Backlund (C)
#13 Johnny Gaudreau (LW)
#17 Lance Bouma (LW)
#18 Matt Stajan (C)
#19 Matthew Tkachuk (LW)
#23 Sean Monahan (C)
#25 Freddie Hamilton (C)
#36 Troy Brouwer (RW)
#39 Alex Chiasson (RW)
#67 Michael Frolik (RW)
#79 Micheal Ferland (LW)
#93 Sam Bennett (C/LW)


#1 Brian Elliott
#31 Chad Johnson

Management is finally making some changes that arm-chair critics have been chasing for years. Bollig sent down, some kids getting a chance, and special teams a renewed focus. Some head scratchers remain like Wideman on the top-D pairing, and the signing of Nick Grossman as the 8th D man. Nonetheless, the steal of a deal for Gaudreau, coupled with the late addition of Kris Versteeg, improves this team to contention status early on. Let’s hope they don’t flop out of the gate.