The Calgary Flames appear to be moving more toward the type of system they want to play. However, many questions remain about their next move. Should they sell their personal assets to acquire draft capital and more young players for the prospect pool (and potentially the NHL roster)? Or should they stay the course, continue to focus on winning games and see where that takes them?
This has been a hot topic on Flames Twitter and Flames social media in general (although I tend not to venture into different avenues for long), and it’s a topic that has come up several times during last season when I started covering this team and even before that.
For those who don’t know much about my background, I’m from Nashville, Tennessee. As someone who has been writing about the Nashville Predators for almost as long as I have been writing about hockey as a whole and watching them for as long as I can remember, I have been able to experience the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. . I know the kind of upheaval Calgary fans have faced over the past few years.
It’s almost uncanny how similar the two franchises are. Both have had recent success followed by mediocrity or downright mediocre results. The systems put in place by previous head coaches were horrible and there were issues within the fan base with how the coaches used certain players on the roster. There are (and were) guys on both teams who were signed to bad contracts by general managers who are now gone, and when it came to last season, there were big decisions to be made regarding how each franchise was going to move forward for the future, and this is where the two franchises diverge in their approach.
The Predators decided to sell assets like Mattias Ekholm and Tanner Jeannot to obtain players, prospects and prime stock. They traded Ryan Johansen and kept half of his salary, reacquired Matt Duchene and new general manager Barry Trotz decided to embark on a “culture change” by bringing in players like Ryan O’Reilly for a four-year contract. helping young players mature in the right way because he knows how to win.
The Flames, on the other hand, are still in limbo, costing them valuable time given that they have some valuable assets they need to move on. They have to make a decision, and given the type of results this team is producing (and the type of impact young players are having as they move into the lineup), it seems like the best plan to The action is the same as the Predators.
Of course, it’s important to note that general manager Craig Conroy doesn’t appear to be opposed to making deals to move some players whose deals are expiring, and it’s good that he’s willing to wait until the good deal comes from another team. Patience is a virtue, and Conroy has plenty of it. However, the longer we wait, things become more desperate and ultimately the last thing many fans want to see is spending more money on players who aren’t worth what they think they are. to be (Elias Lindholm).
It’s also important to note that the Predators are near the bottom of the NHL standings. It wasn’t easy for them at all. However, head coach Andrew Brunette instills a system that allows for creativity and creates tons of high-risk opportunities, which helps develop good habits. Although they have struggled in some areas, they are an enjoyable team to watch with direction for the future. Fans have no expectations other than that young players will have a lot of playing time and the draft pick at the end of the season will be relatively high.
Although the Predators have a better prospect pool than the Flames, in the opinion of most draft analysts, the Flames still have plenty of pieces to work with. Giving some of their higher-level prospects a chance in the lineup is a good start, but now for many it’s about taking the next step and moving pieces around to acquire more young players and prospects. choice as well.
As someone who writes about the Predators and pays attention to the fan base, I think it would do the Flames a lot of good to follow the same path Nashville has taken for this season and the future instead of trying to prolong the need to win. Building the future involves losing, but there are ways to make the team not unbearable to watch. Change is a good thing and the Flames have found their way along that path. It is now a matter of going further.
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