Flames Rookies show little hope for the future…


The Flames Rookies clashed with the Oilers Rookies last night at the Young Stars Tournament in Penticton, B.C and did nothing to make anyone feel warm and fuzzy about what the Flames had coming in their system.

Without Hall, Eberle, and Paajarvi in the line-up the Oilers group looked deeper and more skilled than a Flames line up that featured Mikael Backlund. Both teams opened the scoring in the first period with power play goals but from that point on it was the Oilers group that showed more. Even without their big three, the Oilers led the game in chances and shots for most of the affair. The Flames managed to catch up and pass them on shots late in the game when the Oilers were defending a lead.

For his part, Mikael Backlund did not impress at all. The Flames will need him to step up his skating and his physical determination if he is to be even a contributor on the third line of the big club.

The best Flame on the ice was T.J. Brodie. The Young Flames defenseman did a solid job all night long of moving the puck but his work along the wall and in front of the net needs seasoning yet if he is to be truly effective in the NHL. He may be a sixth or seventh D man if the Flames have to trade a blue liner to get under the cap.

Meanwhile, another highly touted defenseman of the Flames John Negrin picked up a power play marker but looked very average behind his own blue line. The Oilers were able to victimize him a number of times with soft dump-ins to his corner, which led to turnovers in the Flames zone.

Young net minder Leland Irving made enough big stops that they should want to see just how far he could develop given the time and experience. Once he learns to be more consistent in his positioning, his game will improve.

That being said the game was fun to watch as the effort was definitely there. A few of the boys also wanted to be sure everyone in the building knew they were more than willing to drop the mitts and get after it as well. In the second period, there were a couple well-coordinated skirmishes. The best of which was a tilt between Flames Chris Breen and the Oilers Cameron Abney that was a pretty even go round until Abney nailed Breen with a hay maker right on the beak, knocking the Flames hopeful to the ice.

The one thing this Rookie tourney has done is prove that everyone was right – there is little in the system coming for the Flames. However, if they make the right trade (which they have to make due to being over the cap) they might actually be able to acquire a couple young assets for the future.

The Hockey Writers

  • keepsix

    Absolute crap. Did you watch these games??
    I must agree with the previous posters – totally misrepresents the 3 games they actually played.

  • http://hockeyspy.blogspot.com Christopher Ralph

    Tough judgment after one game viewing.

    While the Flames are likely in the bottom 3rd of prospect depth and talent amongst NHL teams, there is definitely hope for the future.

    Mikael Backlund, TJ Brodie, Greg Nemisz, Tim Erixon, Mitch Wahl should all be contributors in the not so distant future. Prospects like Howse, Irving, Negrin, Pelech, Ortio, Reinhardt, Bouma, Arnold, Seabrook, Ferland, Holland amongst others (I could go on) all show promise and have legitimate NHL aspirations.

    One prospect game viewed is not the best basis for a system analysis.

  • sketchyt

    If anyone wonders why NHL teams don’t allow bloggers and amateur writers press passes during the regular season, this article is a pretty good reason why.

  • Gavin

    This article shows little hope for a journalistic career.

  • hounddog

    Little in the system???? Wow! If you would have taken the time to watch the game(s), you would see that the Flames have a very bright future. The defense is progressing very nicely. Brodie, Negrin, Seabrook, along with Pelech and Erixon (who did not play), are as solid as prospects go. Stop reading/watching TSN and start paying attention to the the fricken team.

    The Oilers have (as they call them) “the big 3″ who have a combine 0 minutes of pro experience, still have to prove they belong in a “mans” game. So much hype for a team that finished dead last in both the NHL and the AHL. That tells me they have absolutely nothing in their system and are putting so much dependency on the “big 3″ that at least 1 or more will be doomed to failure.

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  • Stimpy

    Was this written by a Hockeysfuture reject? I think it’s pretty obvious they didn’t watch the game and did noting more than look at the scoring summary before writing this garbage. The Flames rookies outplayed the Oilers rookies for much of the game but were stoned by the Oilers goaltender. The Oilers rookies were opportunistic and managed to score on their chances while the Flames rookies were turned away by big saves. To be quite honest, except for the power play, the Oilers rookies didn’t do much to impress, which was the same in every other game in the tournament. I wonder if we can expect to see a similar article about how bad the Oilers future is after losing to a Sharks team with no big name prospects on the roster? Again, outside of the power play the Oilers looked outclassed by the rag-tag Sharks, and that included the over-hyped Big 3. The player of the the game was a no name guy playing for a contract. Woe the Oilers future, it sure does look bleak!

  • A Fan

    They didn’t look so bad against Anaheim…