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All Things Flaming C

Flames Update…Ready to Be Inspired?

The month of cleansing the mind of the Flames 2011-12 demise is coming to a close. Copious amounts of malt liquor and other fermented elixirs have passes into the gullets of the faithful, yet incensed fans. There have been some notible changes thus far in our increasingly elongated post seasons we’ve become accustomed to…..like our Northern friends, the 1st Overall Draft Pick Experts.

Not to look back with too much admonishment, the Flames brass have “mutually agreed to terminate their working relationship” with Mr. Brent Sutter. We all know the purge of The Sutters is nearing its final phase and I believe there is still a Richie or Ronnie left alone to churn out greatness from the Viking community. Regardless, the phrasing of the end of B-Sutz reign as Head Coach was nothing other than polishing a proverbial turd. 3 years of non-playoff hockey equals the liberty to move on. Mike Keenen said it best when he retorted in a miffed interview that he wished he could have retained a job after missing the playoffs for 3 straight seasons. Sadly, he was fired after not advancing to the next round…bygones. A scorned former employee that lashed out at Murray Edwards and theTeflon One-Ken King, Keenan spoke the truth and Brent was gone as coach. As far as the vacancy sits, Bob Hartley’s name has been bandied about, Troy Ward of the Heat, Marc Crawford, and Terry Crisp (started by your’s truly) all have the potential to fill the void. Another sexier choice has the NY Rangers faltering, John Torterella getting fired, and adding some pizzazz to the media scrums upon his emergence. Randy Sportak will be able to piss and moan about curse words ad nauseum. Let’s hope the decision they make is wise and steers them in the right direction and maybe he can be a positive influence on any exciting free agents….from Prague.

The Flames ironically signed Prague-born Roman Cervenka to a one-year contract today. The scoring leader on a stud-laden Omsk Avangard KHL, Cervenka apparently was a hot commodity as his international experience and dynamic skill set have made his marketabilty sky-rocket. Though there seem to be some critics that have other feelings about the Czech mate (British lingo)... A veteran NHL Scout said about Roman -“slippery little prick, but not physically involved. Too easily denied for my liking. Used to call him Gretzky of Czech League in Czech Republic. I think they overpaid and didn’t hear of any bidding war. He’s smallish, very skilled and soft. I had to check the calender to see if it was April 1st when I saw the money they gave him.” - high praise indeed. I guess only time will tell, though on paper he seems like an electric player with the possibility of igniting a woeful, saggy Flames offense. Perhaps his presence alongside a Swiss phenom named Sven Baertschi can get a little positive banter in the Flames direction. Svensational has been just that for the Portland W-Hawks with 25 points in 15 games in the DUB playoffs. I dare say a major meth addiction and an affinity for Big Mac’s are the only things keeping him from being a top 6 forward with the big boys next year. Max Reinhart has also been incredible and has been playing in the AHL since his WHL season ended. It may be a stretch to make The Show in September, but the kid can play. One guy who won’t be with Jarome, Glenner and the fellas is good ol’ Olli. He’s ready to go to the highest bidder and will probably end up in Toronto (consistent over-payers), Columbus (he likes their jerseys) or Edmonton (bad agent). Thank-you for your long, winding rushes and your refusal to adhere to the 2-hands-on-the-stick rule. This begs the question - does Monsieur Cammalleri revert to numero 13? Someone needs to ask him via Twitter, or if he’s on the set of Mr.D any time soon. Thank-you in advance.

As the NHL playoffs trundle on without your beloved Flames or any Canadian teams or favorites Pittsburgh or Boston for that matter, a new champion will emerge and teams will blow their loads come July 1st on Free Agents that clearly aren’t that free. My feelings are that Calgary won’t be chasing their tails with the big names and perhaps will find a solid coach, pick up a couple pieces to form their dynasty (smile folks) and show a little more deep thinking to their decision making processes. If the St. Louis Blues have shown us anything, it is that you don’t have to be the prettiest girl to have people notice you. Sometimes a good life coach (Hitchcock) and a padded push up bra (Halak and Elliott) can go a long way. Let’s hope the Flambe can be the darlings of the NHL again someday. We can discuss the virtues of dealing the Captain another day….

Enjoy your golf season….

Scooter Conroy

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