This is why you sign three number two centermen! In case two get injured you line up doesn't really change!! I am fearful of one thing though and that is Conroy on the top line, it happens every year and it hasn't worked in several so I'm hoping against hope that Conroy stays in the bottom six where he does his best work. With Stajan's Injury and Langkow dealing with a slow recovery the Flames are in a great cap situation, no hurry to make any moves now.
Is it my imagination or is there really no training camps anymore? Realistically the players have a training camp called "summer". After that it's hit the ice for a warm up and then we'll play a game! As the pre-season makes the owners money and training camp doesn't it makes sense that it has basically been dispensed with. Anyway here are my pre-season predictions for your reading pleasure:
T.J. Brodie will beat out Pelech in the coaches eyes but Pelech's contract means he'll stay. Kronwall will get waived again. Pardy will sit in the box again. Negrin will be the first call up for defense.
Mitch Wahl will show why he is the most NHL ready center in the AHL, unfortunately they have no room for him on the big team yet. Yet.
Backlund will end up playing with Tanguay at some point, the chemistry is apparent and they will play with Iginla.
Jokinen will play with Bourque and Hagman and find his game.
This will be Chucko's last year with the Flames organization and possibly pro-hockey in North America.
Moss will be moved.
Kotalik will stay.
Conroy will end up playing with Iginla at some point, it's like a bad addiction for any coaching staff.
Langkow, Stajan, Jokinen, Backlund, Conroy, Stone, Sutter... too many cooks at the center position, one will move. Given that Stajan just re-upped, Backlund is the only young force, Jokinen is tied to Sutter and Conroy is not signing next year anyway... Langkow is the most likely guy if he can come back and regain some of his old form. If Langkow is not moved then the next most likely is Stajan if a taker could be found for his salary/ contract which isn't crazy.
Okay I'm not trying to egg on anyone and I'm not trying to say the Phanuef trade was a win for the Flames because I still think that he could have gotten a better return but seriously... if you saw him play in the leafs first pre-season game you remember why Flames fans were wanting him gone. Phanuef has a ton of compete in him, probably will make a great captain but his defensive play is pretty weak. All of his talk about making the playoffs kind of vanished when he got turned inside out. I'm not alone either, major names in hockey have said the same thing so disagree with me if you'd like but that's the consensus. Having White and Hagman does add good depth to this current Flames roster so if I was given the choice of good depth or a liability on the ice....
And yes I realize it's pre-season.
I'm man enough to admit when I'm wrong. At the draft I called out the Flames management for picking Reinhart over Kabanov, given Kabanov's upside in talent. I have been proven wrong, the kid has been late to two practices already and is showing why he was driven from his junior team. So...Tod Button...I apologize.
EDIT- Sorry guys, don't know why yopur comments are not showing up but I do appreciate it, if you want to get mad at me or ask me anything send me a message and i'll be glad to respond.