Kukla's Korner

All Things Flaming C

Flaming Leapfrog

The Flaming C of Love is riding the wave of success to the cusp, once again, of playoff relevance. Recent disciplined victories over Chicago and San Jose have put them in an agreeable position. Jarome is afire and Miikka has been pre-Roman Turek-extension magnificent. The victory in San Jose at the Cow Tank (Cow Palace/Shark Tank) last night was his 300th career victory and earned him some post-game wine coolers and Gammeldansk. Leland Irving has been named tonight’s starter versus Phoenix according to DailyFaceOff.com. #34 isn’t much for the party scene, but may have been lured into some celebratory imbibing. Congrats!

As the merry men sit 25-22-7 and one point out of 8th, a win tonight would “Leapfrog” them past the former Jets squad and possibly Minnesota into a playoff spot, however brief that may be. The lineup has been mirroring a chameleon’s appearance, but the team is still finding the right shade of red to garner onice excitement. No sane Flames fan can sit back and guarantee these future fruitions, but it’s nice to know they have the horses to put it together. Olli Jokinen, of former villainous standing, has been exceptional and was rewarded with a sweet hat trick last eve and still he minimizes his interview smiles. Perhaps jaded from the past, he is indeed playing with renewed confidence and vigor. “Confidence breeds success and success breeds confidence.”- some motivational speaker. While Mike Cammalleri hasn’t put up the numbers he or the Rene Bourque haters have wanted, his offensive creativity will be rewarded with some g-notes and apples sooner than later. Nice work on the commercial while we are discussing Mr. Calimari.

Jarome Iginla has shown that whenever people start to question his value to the team and therefore his value as a trade commodity, he rises above and starts putting up the numbers. He clearly wants to remain a fixture on this team until he decides to hang them up and move on to a career as a Smile Model for Aquafresh…the KidzMint is delicious! (Free plug: Calls to get them to sponsor haven’t been returned). He leads the team in goals with 21 and trails the afore-mentioned Olli Jokinen by one point. While not tallying alot, Blair Jones has been solid and brings a pest-like angle to the team as shown with his battles with the unflappable Joe Thornton in San Jose. He’s big, 6’2”, 215, quick and only 25. Perhaps he will fill a niche that has been vacant and will mirror pain-in-the-derrieres, Esa Tikkanen and Claude Lemieux. He probably won’t put up those numbers, but he’s shown he can compete.

Derek Smith was shown some love from his bosses for his strong play as a Flame with a 2 year, $1.55 M extension. While presently sidelined with an ankle injury, his return should help the offensive defensive posse. No pun intended. He has some slick offensive upside and is +2 as well. Nice pickup J-Feast. Speaking of the GM, he was spotted in New Haven recently scouting the Yale Bulldog’s Brian O’Neill. This forward has 28 points in 25 games and can certainly raise the bar at the team retreat when they play Trivial Pursuit - the true measuring stick of mankind’s intelligence. Leaving no stone unturned, J-Feast scours the Ivy League for hidden gems. Also, they have great pub food at DJ’s Bar and Grill.

Enough chatter about your beloved C-Studs, actions speak louder than words. Let’s hope their fortunes remain bountiful and continue up the Western Conference standings. Albertans deserve a playoff bound entity in 2012 and clearly there is only one viable candidate. Proud Oiler fans are reluctant to peg 2015 or 2016 as their year, but I’m sure their time will come to shine…within the top 3 come draft day. Standard.


Loving Lanny McDonald,

Scooter Churla

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