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All Things Flaming C

What’s Up In Flames Country?

Yeehaw, and Howdy Partner! Thankfully those euphemisms are gone for another 11 and a half months from the Calgary vocabulary. Of course I refer to the Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth, The Calgary Stampede which has recently concluded. Thankfully J-Feast didn’t field any calls for his prized D-Man Jay Bouwmeester as he was crushing copious amounts of lager while donning his cowboy hat and assless chaps. Perhaps this visual is too much. But his mastery of the game they call the off-season does continue…

Recently there has been little excitement in the Calgary papers surrounding the Flames roster and such. They have too many defensemen with contracts and not enough reliable tenders. #34 is of course still around flanked by The Calgary Tower (unless someone in Helsinki will take him) and Danny Taylor; yes that Danny Taylor, the one you’ve never heard of. There is still the possibility that Leland Irving returns and the very outside chance that Karri Ramo is summoned from overseas to back up Kipper The Orator. (He loves public speaking.)

The recent buzz from the player ranks has been the Rookie Evaluation Camp and the coming out party of John Gaudreau. The 4th rounder out of Boston College was the toast of the camp and only accentuates the depth that the Flames possess. At 5’6”, he is the prototypical power forward the team has been lacking since G-Money Gary Roberts left for greener pastures in 1997. Perhaps he’s not a power forward, but indeed a slick, skilled future-Flame. There was also praise for another name familiar to the Flambe faithful….Svectacular Sven Baertschi. The camp really didn’t offer us anything towards the prospects of 2012-13, but these 2 apparently were standouts. Let’s move along.

The Jay Bouwmeester saga appears to be playing out the way the positive observer would like it to. Gary Suter Jr. (ok it’s his nephew) spurned the Red Wings for Minny, Shea Butter Weber has been sequestered to Nashville for another 14 years, and Matt Carle has moved along to the 2004 Stanley Cup thiefs of Tampa Bay. What do these moves mean? Philly needs a d-man, Detroit lost Brad Stuart and Nick Lidstrom, and there were rumors that St. Loo wanted Jay Bo before this all transpired. Perhaps the sensei will have all these teams vying for his suddenly modestly-paid blueliner, or perhaps nothing will happen and we will again be burying one way contracts in the AHL. Whatevs. Chances are there will be a significant lockout/strike and the off-season dealings will prove moot. Lettuce hope not. Yes that is a punny. The true believers in Jay-Feast all doth believe he will make a solid deal for his highly sought after rear guard and the future will be so bright, we may have to wear shades. I am already looking forward to the copy/pastes from the haters of obvious overhype. As always, only time will tell in this regard.

One feather in the proverbial cap that should be acknowledged is the recent accolades the tech dudes of the Calgary Flames received.  Some times they are challenged to keep the fans entertained in the Dome even in the most-unentertaining of evenings. The Information, Display and Entertainment Association had their 30th Annual Awards ceremony in Minnesota and the Flames technical crew was awarded the “Best Overall Video Display in Professional Sports” -the biggest award of the evening. They also won “Best Overall Hockey”, a title recently eluding the on-ice product. Congratulations on these prestigious awards.

Well rather than ramble on about how great the hiring of Bob Hartley was, the signings of Wideman and Hudler being sheer genius, and the overall wonderfullness of their franchise depth, I will let the chips fall as they may and hope that the experts are indeed the experts they portray in real life. Perception is reality, therefore when Victor Newman walks down the street, we all know he has been married 13 times and deserves a hug. We are all waiting for the GM to slake our hunger for this deal to happen, and patience is indeed a virtue.

Scooter Johanson





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