Calgary Flames: 2013 NHL Draft War Room

Guest post by Eldon MacDonald (edited by @ChrisRalphTHW)

Sven Baertschi Flames
Sven Baertschi is one of the key building blocks for the Calgary Flames. (Brace Hemmelgarn-US PRESSWIRE)

Potential Calgary Flames Picks

The purpose of this article is to shed some light on what the Calgary Flames might be looking for in the upcoming 2013 NHL Draft in New Jersey and to provide some idea as to who may be available and picked with each draft selection. Even if you don’t agree with all of my suggestions, this article should be able to provide you with most of the information needed to make your own list of hopeful selections. To give the reader a fairly wide range of information, we have provided the following:

  • Major Needs
  • Likely Draft Positions and Potential Picks
  • The Major Team Decision Makers
  • The Big Club – Current Roster
  • Top 10 Prospects
  • The Last Three Drafts

The reader should be aware that the suggested picks may or may not be available at the team’s turn at the draft. They are indicative, however, of the types of players that will be available and the types of choices that Jay Feaster and staff will have to make come June 30th in New Jersey.

Other Posts in This Series (War Room Final Rankings – Top 120)

  •  Round 1 – Prospects ranked 1 to 30
  • Round 2 – Prospects ranked 31 to 60
  • Round 3 – Prospects ranked 61 to 90
  • Round 4 – Prospects ranked 91 to 120

You can use these posts to get more information on players ranked 1 through 120 including the following on most prospects:

  • Nicknames
  • Audio
  • Video
  • Quotes
  • Twitter
  • Stats

Major Needs

One may want to ask: what don’t the Flames need?

1 – Number one centre–The Calgary Flames desperately need a number one centre and this year just might be the year to select one.

2 – Number one goalie  – With Miikka Kiprusoff contemplating retirement, the Calgary Flames will need a true number one goalie going forward. They may draft another to add to the prospect pool, but the draft is likely not the place to address this need. The Flames probably are hoping they already have one in house.

3 – Help on the blueline – After Mark Giordano and TJ Brodie, the Flames need to reload. Tyler Wotherspoon looks to be a good one, but will still likely need some seasoning in the AHL to help with pro game adjustment. There are, of course, others in the system but elite prospects are desired in this area.

4 – Best player available (BPA) – Best player available is always a good strategy. However, when there are many players of similar value, it is usually the one who has the qualities your team values the most that comes out on top. The team may lean towards defensemen in latter picks because their d-men inventory has been depleted and you are more likely to get lucky with a d-man in the latter picks as they take longer to develop and may not show their true potential as early as forwards.

Likely Draft Positions and Potential Picks

Round 1; pick 6 (The numbers in brackets are my rankings)

  • Preference 1 – Elias Lindholm (#6)
  • Preference 2 – Sean Monahan (#7)
  • Preference 3 – Max Domi (#11)

Potentially available at 5 ending at 11 are: Valeri Nichushkin, Elias Lindholm, Sean Monahan, Rasmus Ristolainen, Nikita Zadorov, Darnell Nurse and Max Domi.

Elias Lindholm
Elias Lindholm (photo by Jan Buler / courtesy Brynäs IF)

This is a difficult choice; the smooth skating Swede who has the potential to put up the big numbers and is a better fit as a number one centre or the more Swiss Army knife, good at everything, Sean Monahan. Sean is a personal favourite of mine but his best fit is likely as a number two centre. Remember, the guy you don’t pick is likely to end up in Edmonton, if they keep the pick. Of course, I am assuming MacKinnon, Jones, Drouin and Barkov are off the boards at 6.

Round 1: Pick 22 – Historical success rate = 76%

  • Preference 1 – Zachary Fucale(#35)
  • Preference 2 – Adam Erne (#21)
  • Preference 3 – Steve Santini (#24)

Potential picks in the 18 to 28 range are: Ryan Pulock, Curtis Lazar, Anthony Mantha, Adam Erne, ValentinZykov, Andre Burakowsky, Steve Santini, KerbyRychel, Ryan Hartman, Madison Boweyand Mirco Mueller. Zachary Fucale, the top ranked goalie, also could be available.

This would be an ideal time to select the top goalie in the draft because if you leave it to the next pick, he could be gone. Adam Erne would be a nice consolation prize if Fucale was off the boards at this pick.

Editor’s Note (Chris): I cringe at the thought of the Flames picking a goalie anywhere in the first round. I like Fucale as a prospect, but goalies are so difficult to project. My personal hope would be that hometown kid Josh Morrissey is available at this slot. The Flames already have Wotherspoon and Sieloff in the system and thus I would also rather pass on Santini at this point as well. 

Round 1: Pick 28 – Historical success rate = 76%

  • Preference 1 – Steve Santini(#24)
  • Preference 2 – Madison Bowey(#27)
  • Preference 3 – Mirco Mueller(#28)
  • Preference 4 – Chris Bigras (#31)
  • Preference 5 –  Robert Hagg (#33)
  • Preference 6 – Shea Theodore (#34)

Potentially available starting at 24 and ending at 34 are: Steve Santini, Kerby Rychel, Ryan Hartman, Madison Bowey, Mirco Mueller, Laurent Dauphin, Jacob De La Rose, Chris Bigras, Morgan Klimchuk, Robert Hagg and Shea Theodore. The second ranked goalie, Eric Comrie is also a possibility.

There are a lot of good defensemen of similar value still available at 28 so I have listed all the main contenders. My personal preference is Steve Santini because a shutdown defenseman is so valuable come playoff time and this guy showed us that he is one of the best if not the best at the U18’s. My second choice would be Madison Bowey mainly because of his skating and willingness to do what it takes to be a difference maker. I feel Boweyhas a whole lot more to show us, offensively and defensively than we have seen to date. My third choice would be Mirco Mueller for his size, skating, active stick and ability to log big minutes. I like the other defensemen as well although Theodore is more offenseman than defenseman and has a lot of work to do on the defensive side.

However, if Jay Feaster is serious about having a third line centre that is tough to play against as a top priority(as per the video from first the twitter quote above), then there are two potential candidates who may be available – Ryan Hartman at 26 and JT Compher at 38 – both would make excellent picks and there is not as much difference between the abilities of the two as the difference in the rankings would seem to suggest.

Editor’s Note (Chris): If a defenseman is in order at this pick, my preference would be Shea Theodore, if still available. My preference here would be for Morgan Klimchuk, Ryan Hartman, JT Compher or another skilled forward.  

Round 3: Pick 66 – Historical success rate = 24%

  • Preference 1 – Linus Arnesson(#63)
  • Preference 2 –Micheal Downing (#67)
  • Preference 3 – Gustav Olofsson (#70)

Potentially available starting at 63 and ending at 73 are: Linus Arnesson, Nick Sorensen, Oliver Bjorkstrand, Lucas Wallmark, Micheal Downing, Jan Kostalek, Pavel Buchnevich, Gustav Olofsson, Yan Pavel Laplante, Mitchell Wheaton and Emile Poirier.

There are still defensemen with top four potential who are likely to still be on the board at 67. The three above would be my top choices. Emile Poirier would be a good forward choice if available (most rankings have him considerably higher than I do).

Editor’s Note (Chris): Of the players noted above, I would prefer the forwards, especially Sorensen (durability issues), Bjorkstrand (probably gone in the 2nd round), Buchnevich (will he cross the pond) or Poirier (my preference). 

My bias is that I would like to see Ryan Kujawinski drop to this position. He’s had a tough year, but the potential and game is there if his development can be steered in the right direction.

Round 4: Pick 96 – Historical success rate = 19%

Update: pick traded to Florida Panthers in Corban Knight trade while article was under construction.

  • Preference 1 – Carl Dahlström(#92)
  • Preference 2 – Teemu Kivilhalme (#93)
  • Preference 3 – Jackson Houck (#95)
  • Preference 4 – Taylor Hill (#99)

Potentially available starting at 92 and ending at 102 are:Carl Dahlström, Teemu Kivilhalme, JuuseSaros, Jackson Houck, Niklas Hansson, Peter Trainor, Brendan Harms, Taylor Hill, Will Butcher, Mason Geertsen and Emile Djuse. Also likely to be available are goalies, Eamon McAdam, Patrik Bartosak and Brendan Burke.

Carl Dahlströmis a 6’4 Swedish defender who seems to have that NHL size and mobility but is still in the process of putting his game together. NHL Central Scouting had Teemu Kivilhalme ranked ahead of Tommy Vanelli (who is touted to go in the 2nd round) as the top defenseman out of US high schools. Jackson Houck is that BPA type (best pest available) who can put up a few points as well and plays right wing. Tyler Hill is your 6’6 boom or bust project guy – if you play the longshots, this guy could have a big payoff.

If Calgary still hasn’t selected a goalie, Juuse Saros (#94), PatrikBartosak (#115) or Brendan Burke, the son of former NHL goaltender, Sean Burke (#120) are still potentially available.

Round 5: Pick 126 – Historical success rate = 11%

  • Preference 1 – Alexandre Coulombe(#122)
  • Preference 2 – Mitchell Theoret(#127)
  • Preference 3 – Jared Hauf (#130)

Potentially available starting at 122 and ending at 132 are: AlexandreCoulombe, Marcus Högberg, Connor Rankin, Cole Cassels, Mitchell Theoret, Spenser Jensen, Ben Harpur, Jarred Hauf,.

OK, there are no superstars or potential superstars in this group but there is enough promise that you can at least hope that one turns into an NHL player. Heading the list would be a Stanstead College defenseman (yes, you heard that name before – think Mark Jankowski, a fellow alumni of Stanstead), Alexandre Coulombe, a 6’4 defenseman rated approximately 94th overall by Central Scouting. Also, there is Mitchell Theoret, a hard to play against centre or winger who went unsigned by the Islanders and is going back in the draft. He looked very good in the OHL playoffs for Barrie. Finally, there is a 6’5 hard to play against defenseman from Seattle named Jared Hauf. Fifth round picks generally are only about 11% successful, so good luck.

Round 5: Pick 134 – Historical success rate = 11%

  • Preference 1 – Joose Antonen(#136)
  • Preference 2 – Antoine Bibeau(#139)
  • Preference 3 – Scott Oke (#140)

Potentially available starting at 130 and ending at 140 are: Jeff Corbett and Stephen Harper, Luke Johnson, Dakota Mermis, Evan Allen, Joose Antonen, Zach Glienke, Evan Cowley, Antoine Bibeau and Scott Oke.

The best bet would be to pick players who I ranked in round three and four that have fallen – see below under the sixth and seventh round picks for a potential list.

Otherwise, there is Joose Antonen, a Finnish forward who had a good U18 or Antoine Bibeau, an NHL sized goalie who was one of the better goaltenders in the Q this season. A personal favourite of mine is Scott Oke, a 6’3 forward for Rimouski who can skate for a big guy and put up a few points as well.

Round 6: Pick 156 – Historical success rate = 9%

Round 7: Pick 186 – Historical success rate = 10%

  • Me 90 – NHL 156 – Matt Murphy
  • Me 97 – NHL 211 – Peter Trainor (3rd time available)
  • Me 109 – NHL unranked – Jesse Lees
  • Me 114 – NHL 230 – Miro Aaltonen(3rd time available)
  • Me 119 – NHL >290 – Markus Søberg
  • Me 124 – NHL 200 – Marcus Högberg
  • Me 125 – NHL 165 – Cole Cassels
  • Me 131 – NHL 175 – Steven Harper
  • Me 136 – NHL 216 – Evan Allen
  • Me 137 – NHL 289 – Joose Antonen
  • Me unranked – NHL unranked – Albert Yarullin (3rd time available)
  • Me unranked – NHL unranked – Mitchell Theoret (re-entry prospect)
  • Me unranked – NHL unranked – BrendenKichton(re-entry prospect)

It is virtually impossible to tell who might be available from 156 on  so what I did was list those personnel who I have ranked in the 3rd and 4th rounds and the 5th round up to 145 which the NHL has ranked 160 or greaterthat still have a decent chance of still being available. As this is as good time as any to make sure you take the best player available, I have listed the prospects in ranking order. I have also added Russian blueliner Albert Yarullin who has a big shot on the power play (although memories of Babchuk may scare off Flames brass),  Mitchell Theoret (6’2, 212) who looked very good for Barrie in the OHL playoffs and Brenden Kichton, a power-play quarterback with Spokane.

The Major Team Decision Makers

1 –General Manager:Jay Feaster

2– Assistant GM of Player Personnel: John Weisbrod

3 – Coach: Bob Hartley

*Soon to be newly anointed person in charge of hockey operations, or whatever title the Flames decide to bestow upon the individual. Shanny?

The Big Club – Current Roster

(As Found On The Team’s Website)

*Also see CapGeek as reference for depth chart and player contracts and salaries


Left Wing


Right Wing


Alex Tanguay

Mike Cammalleri

Lee Stempniak


Curtis Glencross

Jiri Hudler

Ben Hanowski


Sven Baertschi

Matt Stajan

Tim Jackman


Steve Begin

Mikael Backlund

Akim Aliu


Carter Bancks

Roman Horak C/W

Brian McGrattan


Paul Byron C/W

Corban Knight


Maxwell Reinhart


Lance Bouma


Ben Street







John Gaudreau

Mark Jankowski

Bill Arnold C/W


Kenny Agostino

Markus Granlund

Ryan House


Michael Ferland

Greg Nemisz

Coda Gordon


Turner Elson

Kenneth Agostino

Matthew Deblouw C







Mark Giordano

Dennis Wideman

Miikka Kiprusoff


TJ Brodie

Chris Butler

Joey MacDonald


Mark Cundari

Corey Sarich

Karri Ramo


Derrick Smith

Brett Carson

Reto Berra







Tyler Wotherspoon

John Ramage

Jon Gillies


Patrick Sieloff

Chris Breen

Laurent Brossoit


Brett Kulak

Ryan Kulkin

Joni Ortio

Take one last look at the above roster before the craziness of summer begins – Snapshot from June 20, 2013.


  • Ben Hanowski looks high on the depth chart at this stage

Top 10 Prospects – Draft War Room Edition

Johnny Gaudreau
Calgary Flames 2011 fourth-rounder Johnny Gaudreau (Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE)

1 – 2011 – 104 – John Gaudreau

2 –2012 – 021 – Mark Jankowski

3 – 2011 – 057 – Tyler Wotherspoon

4 – 2012 – 075 – Jon Gillies

5– 2011 – 045 – Markus Granlund

6 – 2010 – 140 – Kenny Agostino

7 – 2010 – 103 – John Ramage

8 – 2011 – 164 – Laurent Brossoit

9 – 2010 –108 – Bill Arnold

10– 2012– 042 – Patrick Sieloff

In addition, to the above top 10 prospects, the Flames, of course, have Karri Ramo who played in the KHL last season and can sign with the Flames come July 5th, 2013 when his KHL contract ends.

The Last Three Drafts

(As Per 2013 NHL Official Guide and Record Book)






021 Mark Jankowski 013 Sven Baertschi 064 Max Reinhart


042 Patrick Sieloff 045 Markus Granlund 073 Joey Leach


075 Jon Gillies 057 Tyler Wotherspoon 103 John Ramage


105 Brett Kulak 104 John Gaudreau 108 Bill Arnold


124 Ryan Culkin 164 Laurent Brossoit 133 Michael Ferland


165 Coda Gordon 193 Patrick Holland


186 Matthew Deblouw


[NHL 2013 Draft Guide – The Next Ones Draft Headquarters

Your quintessential draft resource]


[THW The Next Ones Rankings – Final Top 210]

1 thought on “Calgary Flames: 2013 NHL Draft War Room”

  1. This is one of the better articles that I have read on the draft. Much more methodical and logical than the speculative garbage on THN or that clown on sportsnet. Good job.

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