Since 1980, the Calgary Flames have been thrilling fans in southern Alberta, providing many with memories that last a lifetime. Whether you’ve been following the team since the beginning or are new to the club, there will be something fascinating for all fans in the facts listed below. Use some of these questions to win Wing Night trivia or expand your knowledge of the Flames, a franchise that officially turns 50 years old this season.
Who scored the first goal for the Calgary Flames?
After falling behind to the Quebec Nordiques, 1-0 in their first game on Oct. 9, 1980, Guy Chouinard scored to tie it up at 8:45 of the first period. The game, played at the Stampede Corral, ended in a 5-5 tie.
Who did the Flames beat for their first win after relocation?
On Oct. 14, 1980, the Flames beat the Los Angeles Kings 4-2 at Stampede Corral. Four players, Alex McKendry, Eric Vail, Kevin LaVallee, and Don Lever scored goals with goalie Pat Riggin getting the win.
Who was the coach that led the Flames to their first Stanley Cup Final appearance in 1986?
Bob “Badger” Johnson became head coach in 1982. Four seasons later, his team faced off against the Montreal Canadiens in the 1986 Stanley Cup Final. The Canadiens earned their 22nd championship by beating the Flames in five games. Johnson left the team after the following season.
What year did the Olympic Saddledome (now Scotiabank Saddledome) open?
The city of Calgary hosted the 1988 Winter Olympics. In preparation for events, they built the Saddledome, located on the Calgary Stampede grounds, in 1983. The Flames’ first regular season game took place on Oct. 15, 1983, a 4-3 loss at the hands of their provincial rivals, the Edmonton Oilers.
Who scored the Flames’ 1989 Stanley Cup-winning goal?
Future Hall of Famer Doug Gilmour scored at 11:02 of the third period to give the Flames a 3-1 lead en route to their first championship. Gilmour added an empty net goal at 18:57 to secure a 4-2 win on May 25, 1989.
Who set the franchise record for most points in a season in 1980-81?
Kent Nilsson was already a member of the Atlanta Flames when the team relocated to Calgary in 1980. During their first season in Alberta, he scored 131 points (49 goals and 82 assists) to finish third in league scoring. Until 2021-22, when Johnny Gaudreau scored 115 points, no one had come close to challenging his record.
In 1988-89, Tim Hunter led the league in what category?
Thanks to a league-leading 375 penalty minutes, Hunter set the franchise record for most infractions in a single season. He currently holds six top-10 spots for the most penalty minutes in the regular season.
The Flames boasted three Calder Trophy (Rookie of the Year) winners in the 1980s; who were they?
In 1985-86, Gary Suter scored 68 points in 80 games to earn All-Rookie honors and the Calder Trophy. Two seasons later, future Hall of Famer and two-time Stanley Cup champion Joe Nieuwendyk scored 92 points. He became just the second player in team history to achieve more than 50 goals in a season. Finally, in 1989-90, Sergei Makarov scored 86 points in 80 games to go in the record books as the oldest “rookie” to win the award at the age of 31. The NHL changed its eligibility requirements after 1990.
Which Calgary-born goaltender led his hometown team to their only Stanley Cup championship?
Born on Feb. 24, 1963, Mike Vernon became a member of the Flames organization at the 1981 Entry Draft, when he was selected 56th overall. After losing to the Canadiens in the 1986 Cup Final, he backstopped his team to a thrilling six-game victory over those same Canadiens in 1989. Later in his career, Vernon was named playoff MVP in 1997, leading the Detroit Red Wings to their first title in 42 years.
What were the details of the Lanny McDonald trade package in 1981?
On Nov. 25, 1981, the Colorado Rockies traded McDonald along with a fourth-round draft pick in 1983 to the Flames in exchange for Bob McMillian and Lever. McDonald retired with 500 career goals and a Stanley Cup ring, while Lever played four years (275 games) with the Rockies, who moved to New Jersey to become the Devils in 1982. MacMillan ended up playing just 199 games with the Rockies/Devils franchise. The Flames traded the fourth-round pick to the New York Islanders, who selected Mikko Makela. The left-winger played in 423 NHL games.
What year did the Flames miss the playoffs for the first time since relocating to Calgary?
In 1989 the Flames hoisted the Stanley Cup. They followed that campaign with back-to-back Divisional Semi-Finals losses to the Kings and Oilers before missing the post-season for the first time in 1991. The team had a 31-37-12 record for 74 points, the lowest total of any season since moving to Alberta. The Flames qualified for the playoffs in the next four seasons before a seven-year drought ended in 2004.
Who was the first player in Flames’ history to have his number retired?
On Mar. 17, 1990, the franchise honored the Hall of Fame career of McDonald, retiring his No. 9 jersey. During his final season, he scored his 500th goal and was the team captain when they won their only championship.
The Flames altered their franchise by acquiring what player in 1995?
The Flames traded one of their All-Star centers, Nieuwendyk, to the Dallas Stars on Dec. 19, 1995. In return, the team received Corey Millen and Jarome Iginla. Iginla rewrote the franchise’s record book while serving as their captain for nine seasons. He remains the only player in Flames’ history to score more than 1,000 points. Millen, meanwhile, played 92 games for the Flames, and Nieuwendyk was named Playoff MVP in 1999 when the Stars captured the Stanley Cup.
The Flames had five head coaches during the 1990s; who were they?
Doug Risenborough took over for Terry Crisp at the start of the 1990-91 season. He remained in that role until the end of the following season when Guy Charron replaced him. To start the 1992-93 campaign, Dave King was hired and served as head coach for three seasons before conceding the job to Pierre Page. Page made the playoffs his first season and missed the next one, leading to Brian Sutter being named head coach in 1997-98. Sutter didn’t qualify for the playoffs in his three seasons at the helm, earning the worst team record (26-41-15 for 67 points) in a non-shortened season.
Two Flames players won awards during the 1990s; who were they?
Nieuwendyk received the King Clancy Memorial Trophy in 1994-95, and Gary Roberts won the Bill Masteron Memorial trophy in 1995-96. Nieuwendyk already had a Calder Trophy on his mantle and eventually added a Conn Smythe to his resume. Meanwhile, Roberts never won another award during his distinguished career.
Which player did the Flames receive in the Mike Vernon trade?
On Jun. 29, 1994, the Red Wings traded Steve Chiasson for Vernon in a classic one-for-one deal. Vernon was named playoff MVP within three seasons when Detroit won the Stanley Cup, while Chiasson played just 168 games over three seasons with the Flames.
Theo Fleury tied which Nilsson record during his time with the Flames?
Nilsson set the franchise record for points (131) in 1981 and followed that season up with 104 in 1982-83, becoming the only player in team history to collect two seasons of 100 points or more. Fleury collected 104 points in 1990-91 and, for an encore, scored exactly 100 in 1992-93, becoming just the second player to amass two 100-point seasons as a member of the Flames.
Which active goalie (2022) did the Flames draft in the third round in 1999?
Craig Anderson, currently a member of the Buffalo Sabres, was the 77th overall pick in the 1999 Entry Draft. After disagreeing on a contract with the Flames, he re-entered the draft in 2001, where the Chicago Blackhawks took him in the third round. During the 2021-22 season, he collected his 300th career win.
In which playoff series did Fleury score his famous overtime goal?
In 1991, the Flames faced off against the Oilers in a dramatic seven-game opening-round series. On the brink of elimination in Game 6, Fleury caught an errant pass in the neutral zone, skated in on a partial breakaway, and beat future Hall of Famer Grant Fuhr to extend the series another game. Fleury then rushed towards center ice, sliding across the ice as his teammates waited to celebrate with him.
Flames goalie Jeff Reese set which NHL record in 1993?
On Feb. 10, 1993, during a 13-1 Flames victory over the San Jose Sharks, Reese became the first goalie in league history to record three assists in a single game. Robert Reichel scored a hat trick that night, thanks to Reese setting up two of the goals. Meanwhile, Roberts also lit the lamp in the game with help from his goalie.
Which former Flames’ first-round pick assisted on the 2004 Stanley Cup-clinching goal against his former team?
Corey Stillman was the Flames’ 6th overall pick in the 1992 Entry Draft. He played 393 career games with the club over two separate tenures, 1994-2001 and 2010-11. His only point (an assist) in the Stanley Cup Final came on Ruslan Fedotenko‘s goal at 14:38 of the second period, which stood as the game-winner in a 2-1 contest.
Iginla won seven NHL awards from 2000-10; what were they?
In 2001-02, Iginla won three awards. First, he claimed the Art Ross Trophy (regular season scoring championship) with 96 points and the Ted Lindsay Award (most outstanding player). Additionally, he scored the most goals to earn the Maurice “Rocket” Richard trophy with 52. He earned more hardware in 2003-04, with his second Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy, his only King Clancy Memorial Trophy (for contributions on and off the ice) win, as well as the NHL Foundation Player Award (community service). His final trophy in a Flames’ uniform was the Mark Messier Leadership Award (contributions to society) in 2008-09.
Miikka Kiprusoff holds the team record for shutouts in a season; what year did he achieve his feat?
In 2005-06, Kiprusoff was one of the best goalies on the planet, if not the best. He claimed the William M. Jennings and Vezina Trophies, becoming the first goalie in team history to earn an award. In 74 games that season, Kipper won 42 of them and produced ten shutouts. All three marks were team records at the time until he broke the games played and games won record in the following seasons. The shutout record still stands today.
Which undrafted Norris Trophy winner made his NHL debut on Jan. 30, 2006?
Mark Giordano, who became Flames captain in 2013-14 and won the Norris Trophy in 2018-19, made his NHL debut against the St. Louis Blues on Jan. 30, 2006. He played 949 games with the club, scoring 509 points before leaving in the 2022 Seattle Kraken Expansion Draft.
Which current NHL player was the draft pick involved in the Kiprusoff trade on Nov. 16, 2003?
The San Jose Sharks traded Kiprusoff to the Flames in exchange for a second round pick in the 2005 Entry Draft. The Sharks then selected Marc-Edouard Vlasic, who is entering his 18th season with the club.
In 2003, the Flames used their highest draft pick of the decade on what defenceman from Edmonton, Alberta?
With the 9th overall selection in the 2003 Entry Draft, the Flames’ used their pick to select Dion Phaneuf. He played 378 games with the organization before a trade to the Toronto Maple Leafs in 2010, where he eventually became captain.
Only one player from the Flames’ 2006 draft class played in the NHL; who was he?
Leland Irving was a first-round pick (26th overall) in 2006 who played in just 13 games, producing a 3-4-4 record. Other selections; John Armstrong (87th), Aaron Marvin (89th), Hugo Carpentier (118th), Juuso Puustinen (149th), Jordan Fulton (179th), Devin Didiomete (187th), and Per Jonsson (209th) never played in the NHL.
The Flames advanced to the Stanley Cup Final in 2003-04 for the first time since 1989. Who did they beat to get there?
After finishing third in the Northwest Division with 94 points, the Flames drew the Vancouver Canucks in the opening round. They won the series in seven games, advancing with a 3-2 overtime win. Their second-round opponent was the Detroit Red Wings, who they eliminated in six games, winning the final contest in overtime. In the Conference Final, the Flames beat the San Jose Sharks in six games, winning Game 1 in overtime.
Which player “almost” scored a goal in Game 6 of the 2004 Stanley Cup Final?
In one of the most talked about moments of the 2003-04 season, the Flames were on the verge of winning the Stanley Cup in Game 6 when Martin Gelinas appeared to beat Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Nikolai Khabibulin. However, the video was inconclusive, and the Flames lost the game in double overtime.
Which current Flames player made his NHL debut on Jan. 8, 2009?
Mikael Backlund, selected 24th overall in the 2007 NHL Entry Draft, made his NHL debut against the New York Islanders. As of 2022, he is the longest-tenured player in the organization.
What were the details of the Iginla trade with the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2013?
At the trade deadline on Mar. 28, 2013, the Flames traded their captain to the Penguins in exchange for a first round pick in 2013 (Morgan Klimchuk), Kenny Agostino, and Ben Hanowski. Klimcuk played one game for the Flames, with Agostino playing just ten game and Hanowski suiting up for 16 contests. Iginla meanwhile stayed in Pittsburgh for 13 games before finishing his career in Boston, Los Angeles, and Colorado.
Between 2010-2020, the Flames recorded one 100-point season; what year was it?
In 2018-19, the Flames recorded their first 100-point season (107 points) since 2005-06. They won the Pacific Divison over the San Jose Sharks (101 points) but lost in the opening round to the Colorado Avalanche in five games.
Who won the Jack Adams Trophy for Coach of the Year in 2014-15?
Former bench boss Bob Hartley took home the Jack Adams Trophy as the league’s best coach in 2014-15, despite the Flames finishing third in the Pacific Division. He orchestrated a 20-point turnaround in the standings, as the Flames finished the previous season with 77 points.
Between 2010-2020, two Flames players won the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy; who were they?
In 2014-15 Jiri Hudler won his only NHL award by capturing the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy. He scored 31 goals and 76 points with just 14 penalty minutes. Meanwhile, Gaudreau took home the award in 2016-17 by scoring 61 points in 72 games with just four penalty minutes.
Between 2010-2020, who was the Flames’ highest draft pick of the decade?
In the 2014 Entry Draft, the Flames selected center Sam Bennett with the 4th overall pick. He played 402 games over seven seasons scoring 140 points before being dealt to the Florida Panthers.
Which three players made up the “3M Line”?
In 2016, the Flames had a line that consisted of Matthew Tkachuk (48 points), Michael Frolik (44 points),and Backlund (53 points) .
Who did the Flames acquire from the Boston Bruins in June 2015?
In one of the offseason’s most shocking player transactions, the Bruins traded their young defenceman, Dougie Hamilton, to the Flames. In exchange, they received a 1st round draft pick in 2015 (Zachary Senyshyn), 2nd round draft pick in 2015 (Jakob Forsbacks-Karlsson), and a 2nd round draft pick in 2015 (Jeremy Lauzon). Hamilton played 245 games in Calgary, while Senyshyn (14 games), Forsbacks-Karlsson (29), and Lauzon played (76) with the Bruins.
Which goalie played on both sides of the Battle of Alberta from 2017-2022?
Mike Smith joined the Flames after a trade from the Arizona Coyotes in June 2017. He played 97 games over two seasons in southern Alberta before signing as a free agent in Edmonton for the start of the 2019-20 season.
The Flames created the “Forever a Flame” program in 2012; who were the first two inductions?
In 2012, Al MacInnis was the first player inducted into the Forever a Flame program. MacInnis is a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame and the 1989 Stanley Cup-winning team. Nieuwendyk became the second player inducted into the club with a ceremony in 2014. He is also a member of the Hall of Fame, won Rookie of the Year with the Flames, and was part of the 1989 winning team.
Iginla scored his 500th career goal on Jan. 7, 2012. Who did he score on, and who got the assists?
In a game against the Minnesota Wild at the Scotiabank Saddledome, Iginla became the first player in team history to score 500 goals. His third-period goal at 8:33 (assisted by Curtis Glencross and Olli Jokinen) came against Niklas Backström.
Only three players have scored more than 800 points as a member of the Flames; who are they?
Iginla is the franchise leader with 1,095 points in 1,219 games, Fleury is second with 830 points in 791 games, and MacInnis sits in third with 822 points in 803 games.
Harvey the Hound lost his tongue to which former NHL coach?
During an incident in 2003, Harvey the Hound had his tongue ripped out by Edmonton Oilers coach Craig MacTavish.
Who owns the team record for the fastest goal to start any period?
On Apr. 11, 2006, Daymond Langkow scored just five seconds into the third period in a game against the Anaheim Ducks. Iginla assisted on his power-play goal, beating Ilya Bryzgalov en route to a 3-0 Flames victory.
Which two teams have the Flames played in the Heritage Classic?
In 2011, the Flames hosted the Montreal Canadiens at McMahon Stadium, winning the game 4-0, recording the league’s first shutout win in an outdoor game. Eight seasons later, in 2019, the Winnipeg Jets hosted the Flames at Mosaic Stadium in Regina, SK, and beat them 2-1 in overtime.
How many general managers have the Flames had in their franchise history?
Eight people have served as general managers (GM) of the Atlanta and Calgary Flames. Cliff Fletcher was the organization’s first GM, joining the Flames in 1972 while in Atlanta. He moved with the team to Calgary in 1980, winning the Stanley Cup in 1989. Since then, seven people have served: Doug Risenbrough, Al Coates, Craig Button, Darryl Sutter, Jay Feaster, Brian Burke, and Brad Treliving.
Which Sutter brothers have held non-player roles with the Flames organization?
The Sutter Family, Brent, Brian, Darryl, Duane, Rich, and Ron, grew up in Viking, Alberta, a small town (population less than 1,000) about three and a half hours northwest of Calgary. Brian (1997-2000), Brent (2009-2012), and Darryl (2003-2006, 2021-present) have all served as head coaches of the Flames. Meanwhile, Darryl is the only brother who served as general manager from 2003-2010.
The Calgary Sports and Entertainment (CSEC) ownership group owns which other four professional sports organizations?
The CSEC was formed in 2012, succeeding the Calgary Flames Limited Partnership (CFLP), which acquired the Flames from their Atlanta owners in 1980. In 1993, the CSEC received the Calgary Wranglers of the American Hockey League and then grew their portfolio in 1997 by adding the Calgary Hitmen of the Western Hockey League. Additionally, they expanded with the Calgary Roughnecks of the National Lacrosse League in 2011 before gaining majority control of the Canadian Football League’s Calgary Stampeders in 2012.
What four names has the Saddledome had since its opening in 1983?
When the Saddledome first opened on Oct. 15, 1983, it was called the Olympic Saddledome in honor of the upcoming 1988 Winter Olympics hosted by the City of Calgary. Later, in 1994, the building became the Canadian Airlines Saddledome after Canadian Airlines acquired the naming rights. To begin a new decade (2000), Pengrowth bought the contract, and the building became known as the Pengrowth Saddledome. Finally, in 2010, Scotiabank received the rights and rebranded it to the Scotiabank Saddledome.
How many Hockey Hall of Fame players have played for the Flames in their history?
There are 11 players enshrined at the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto who once played with the Flames. MacDonald was the first player inducted in 1992 and was joined by Joe Mullen (2000), Fuhr (2003), MacInnis (2007), Brett Hull (2009), Gilmour (2011), Nieuwendyk (2011), Phil Housley (2015), Makarov (2016), Martin St. Louis (2018), and Iginla (2020) in later years.
Calgary hosted the 1985 NHL All-Star Game; which two members of the Flames were in the lineup?
On Feb. 12, 1985, the Wales Conference (East) beat the Campbell Conference (West) 6-4, with Mario Lemieux earning MVP honors as a rookie at the Olympic Saddledome. Defenceman MacInnis and Paul Reinhart appeared in their first All-Star Games that night, representing their hometown team.
We hope you enjoyed reliving 50 memorable moments in Flames history and didn’t do too bad answering the questions without looking at the answers.
Ryan Gagne is back for his second tour of duty with The Hockey Writers. In 2021 he wrote about the New York Islanders and now will embrace the challenge of covering the Calgary Flames. The best part of this new assignment is Ryan currently lives in Edmonton and will get to see both sides of the Battle of Alberta up close and personal. None of this will make much sense since he was born and raised in New England and the Boston Bruins are his still team.