"Split Squads" aside from being a really really great porn title it is also the reality for the Flames tonight. Every pre-season they play all of their top guys together, which is great, except they always lose against the opponent's prospect team. Vancouver is a team that I actually think has a great mix of veterans and good prospects, pretty solid defense and overall a great franchise. It's really hard to find where you can fault them, maybe letting go young guys like Grabner may come back to haunt them but in the current system in Vancouver nothing much was happening for them.
In Contrast the prospects are in Vancouver to play against a more seasoned Vancouver team, but certainly not an all star one. The Sedins and Luongo will probably not play which makes this affair in Vancouver a home game for the Abbotsford Heat in essence! Mitch Wahl is a very slick playmaker and I think he has a very good shot at the Flames big club next year or at the latest two season from now. I'm looking to see how he fares tonight against some pretty good completion.
I'm getting really interested in how the bottom six will play out, I'm pretty sure I can peg the top six but the bottom half is where teams can define themselves. If their grinders can get 10 goals each then they are doing well. Jackman, Sutter, McMillan, Meyer, Glencross, Moss, Stone, Backlund and Conroy are guys who are trying to get these last positions on the team. A line of Glencross/Backlund/Moss to me screams of tough, defensively reliable with scoring upside kind of line. Sutter/ Conroy/ Jackman also has that kind of feel with way less scoring however. Jackman or Ivanans on a line with Backlund would make sense to provide him with some protection, I would prefer Jackman if this is the case, he has a little more jump and is not a push over. Don't read into Moss being a center, not going to happen!! Moss to me is a guy primed to get traded along with a D before Langkow is ready to Return.
Anyway I'm going to go home, turn on the T.V. and enjoy me some "split squads".