2017 Draft: Who Should Be Available at 16?

June 2nd, 2017 | Posted in Game Takes | By: D'Arcy McGrath

It would be an understatement to suggest Calgary fans have been spoiled somewhat lately when it comes to projecting first round selections in recent entry drafts.

Picking 4th or 6th (twice) is a range much easier to break down, creating three month debates about Sean Monahan vs Elias Lindholm, or whether the Oilers were going to take Leon Draisaitl or Sam Bennett. Last summer the Flames received some good fortune when the likely 4th overall pick Matthew Tkachuk fell to Calgary at 6 and then promptly went on to show his moxie in his rookie season in Calgary.

Two years ago the Flames were slated to pick in a similar spot with my player circled as Matt Barzal when general manager Brad Treliving stole the show by swinging a deal and acquiring Dougie Hamilton and not selecting on Friday night.

This year at 16, in a draft that has very little by way of consensus is almost like herding chickens in predicting what the Flames might do when they go to the podium.
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What Can Fans Expect from 16th Overall?

May 31st, 2017 | Posted in Commentary | By: D'Arcy McGrath

Historically, history isn’t a great way of predicting the future when it comes to NHL Entry Drafts.

Every draft is different, the teams selecting in the various positions change, the eras of hockey come and go to say nothing of recent changes to technology that have helped scouting players and avoiding complete swing and miss results at the top of the draft.

The Flames draft smack dab in the middle of the June 23rd Draft in Chicago, but what does 16th overall get you in modern times?

First off lets build some fences around some of the data to make sense of it.
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Game Takes: Ducks 3 Flames 1

April 19th, 2017 | Posted in Game Takes | By: D'Arcy McGrath

In the summer I felt a good campaign for the Calgary Flames would end with a battle for a playoff spot, a 7-9 finish in the West and a photo finish. Everything else would be gravy.

As much as it hurts tonight they had some gravy, a pretty good serving.

The Flames had to survive a tough start, with an inexplicable short side goal minutes in from Brian Elliott, but they settled in and gave it all they had in a 3-1 empty net goal finish as the Ducks completed a very surprising sweep in the first round of the playoffs.

The Flames were even up in the first game, and likely the better team in the final three, but just couldn’t find that save, that bounce, or that finish to find the win column.

It hurts today, but I honestly think bright things are coming for this hockey club.
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Game Takes: Ducks 5 Flames 4 OT (Ducks lead series 3-0)

April 17th, 2017 | Posted in Game Takes | By: D'Arcy McGrath

I’m just not a conspiracy guy.

I think I turned that corner when that Alien Autopsy show was on TV about 20 years ago, the foolishness of the whole thing had me seriously wondering about people that believe there is always a fiendish plot at work. Things got worse around 911 and the truthers, and from that point on I decided I wouldn’t join the masses and look for Machiavellian story lines where they didn’t exist.

That’s still the case in case you’re wondering if I’ve turned over an odd new leaf. I’m not sure I agree with the non goal call in Anaheim on Saturday, and I’m pretty sure I haven’t seen a replay that shows the Nate Thompson goal should have counted tonight, a death knell of a goal that helped bring the Ducks back from a 4-1 deficit in besting the Flames by a 5-4 overtime score on Monday night. But I still believe they’re independent events all of which seem to be going against one hockey club but will even out in time.

Perhaps if I go back and watch the 2004 playoffs I’ll see enough evidence of good bounces to explain why the Flames have to endure every bounce going against them in a playoff series, but I’ll let you know.
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Game Takes: Ducks 3 Flames 2

April 15th, 2017 | Posted in Game Takes | By: D'Arcy McGrath

I’m not a superstitious person. I don’t worry about walking under ladders, black cats are just darker than brown ones. I’ve broken many mirrors without a lot of thought. I don’t see the number 13 as all that foreboding and I don’t think the fallen limb from a rabbit is my key to success and happiness.

But even I have to admit something is up when the Flames play in Anaheim.

For the second time in three nights the Flames played a very solid road game, outplayed the Ducks for great stretches, should have been up handily through two periods, but then weirded their way to a 3-2 loss in a barn that they just can’t win in.

If I’m Glen Gulutzan I’m simply gobsmacked after seeing my hockey team do almost everything in the game plan but still find a way to lose through stupid penalties, bad bounces, and some very inexperienced decision making.

Maybe I’ll keep an eye out for cats from now on.
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