I have no facts. I have no stats. I have no research, quotes, contacts.
All I have is my opinion, but, as most of you know (begrudgingly), that is worth a fair bit.
Did you come here for an in-depth analysis of teams, perhaps hoping for some outside speculation about your home team? If so, leave now. It will spare you disappointment beyond the shame you must feel from knowing that I write better than you.
But enough of patronizing and belittling comments to my audience of hockey buff mediocrity. Onwards!
Keenan will light a fire under the team's ass. It's time for Iggy to actually be a captain. Yes we all love Iggy and his salute to the renaissance man, however how else can you account for the team's lack of energy and motivation. I blamed it all on Playfair last season (and was vindicated for my season long rant in his departure this summer), but perhaps it had a lot to do with locker room leadership.
Here let me summarize what is now bound to be running through many of your heads: "Blah, Blah, Blah." Aside from the fact that this is all the mental ability I give you credit for, this is also a reflection of the mindless rhetoric that permeates amateur and expert hockey analysts across the board. Vocal behind the scenes, leads by example, a symbol of what a great leader is, yada yada. I'm not buying it. Pull your team by the collars and get them to skate all the time at 100%. The coach delivers the message and punishes those who waver. The captain gets the team to listen to the message. Plain and simple.
There. That was my Flames' season preview. If Keenan delivers the right message, which he will, and Iggy gets the team to follow it, which is the big question, then the Flames will hit thier '04 stride and take the league. If not, it's time to strip the C from Iggy.
Edmonton will finish last in the division. No this is not bias. This is pure fact. Watch. Vancouver will win it if Calgary faulters, if not they come second. Colorado is the wild card but I have them at third. Minny will come 4th and Demers is history.
What do I care about the rest of the league? Compared to our division they're all playing shinny.
And so begins another wonderful season of Flames blogging. I appreciate all your negative feedback. GO!