Flames do need a re-build...in the front office.

As of today Calgary has about 20 more games and can lose 4-5 more times to have any chance of making the playoffs. Since they’ve lost 4 straight I have to think it’s probably not likely. It hasn’t been for a while either. That is why is bothers me so much that Jay Feaster did nothing by the trade deadline to improve this club. Improving the club can mean removing players for futures, it can mean trading futures for the present. When you do neither it makes you the worst kind of Hockey G.M., the indecisive kind.

Eric Francis wrote in his article that Feaster was in a no win situation. I would like to say this is blatantly false. Feaster has several assets which could have garnered something for which he may now get nothing, his doing nothing makes him a loser in that scenario. If he traded away one of the few prospects and his first round pick for a player that makes this team better he is just trying to live up to his promise but instead he did nothing, making him a loser again. In fact the only way Feaster is in a no win situation is if he does nothing…which is what he did. He could have picked a direction. He could have stood tall, pointed the good ship Flames towards a star and said, “THAT WAY!” but what he did was weigh anchor and sulk about how the captain before him kept a bad ship.

We have heard over and over again that ownership is always in win now mode. What does that mean?  To me it signals the Flames should do what they can, however they can, to get into the post season and roll the dice. I will be clear, that did not take place yesterday. Feaster has outright promised playoff hockey in Calgary and right now it looks as though they will fall woefully short. As predicted by many they will fall between 9-13 and just miss the post season by a few points. To the point of always being a winner, that is what 30 other clubs do as well, nobody likes to lose (well one team north of here throws a party when you get a first over all…)

So in light of Feaster’s promise, his actions which were in opposition to that speech, we get to the culture of this team. Jim Playfair came right out and said Iginla doesn’t like to practice, this is the captain of this team. Don’t give me the Iverson, “ Are we Talkin’ about practice!?” B.S. Iginla has to be the shining light for this team. Leading up to the deadline Jarome Iginla’s stats flat lined, 1 point in his last 5. There is a faction that say as soon as something goes wrong the crazies come out and talk about trading Iginla or Kipper. I respond, why is it crazy when the same club, with the same players, goes through the exact same thing every year and never wins? Why is that crazy?  Sutter is historically a coach that either misses the playoffs or goes out in the first round. That’s the truth. Under Iginla and Kipper this team has been a failure, year after year. If one more person brings up the 04 run than I say move to Edmonton so you can live with all the other people who live in the past. That was 8 years ago! Failure since! So to summarize the culture, you have a G.M. who does nothing and shows the players he doesn’t actually do everything he can to make the team a winner, a coach who historically is not a winner at the NHL level, a captain who has grown complacent in Calgary, a roster that won’t get their energy level up for critical games against teams they must beat. The entire culture of the team is in shambles.

Feaster said they have to have intellectual honesty with themselves, his inaction either means he’s intellectually dishonest or Non-intellectually honest. In any respect when you are a season ticket holder having to watch what has become of this mess of a season, the atrocious start, the bad management and outright lies you were told it’s hard to be sold on this club and being a fan. I think it’s a really horrible moment as a fan and player to watch Ken King do something so asinine as create the, “Forever a Flame” program, as a fan it sucks to see MacInnis not treated to a full blow jersey retirement that he deserves and it sucks as a player that no matter how hard you work you won’t get a jersey retired. Are they just going to “honour” Number 14? A guy who carried this team for years? Are they just going to “honour” #12 when he retires the clubs all-time leader in many categories? If they do it’s shameful and if they retire the jersey’s than MacInnis is the tool who gets to be a FF by himself. Vernon and Macdonald are already retired why change now? The answer is Ken King has gone off the narcissism deep end, he’s created this new legacy so he can say, “yeah that was me” not realizing it’s the stupidest idea since the Dion trade.

The Flames do not need to re-build, the roster needs some changes but so does every roster. This clubs needs to be changed at the top. A new President, a new G.M., a new coach and yes… a new captain.


NickSymon's picture

Nice article man... you said it perfectly in the paragraph about Forever a Flame and Ken King.
"The answer is Ken King has gone off the narcissism deep end, he’s created this new legacy so he can say, “yeah that was me” not realizing it’s the stupidest idea since the Dion trade."
I don't know if I agree we don't need a re-build but you bring up good points so I won't argue with you there. I agree the Flames have been mis-managed for far too long now and it's about time someone steps up and changes that. My verdict on Feaster is still in the air but Ken King has to go. We need to start getting \hockey people' in these important positions. Former Flames greats like MacInnis and Nieuwendyk are with other organizations that are more successful than the Flames are right now.

George Prax's picture

The deadline isn't the time to improve a team. Were you willing to give up a 1st for Gaustad when the Flames might not even make the playoffs? Prices were high this year, not even the contending teams make big moves. Feaster should get the summer to try and make moves, that's when teams can go over the cap and make significant changes. The deadline is overhyped like Feaster himself said, especially when you're a bubble team that's not sure how their assets are going to be valued in three weeks. You don't want to give up on the season in that position, or mortgage your future just to get into the playoffs with no chance of winning. It's a tough spot.

saneopinion's picture

What I was saying was he did not chose any direction. Perhaps improving the team was expensive but getting rid of pending UFA's at a reasonable price, especially one's that are easily replaceable, should have been that much easier. If that's an issue he should stop making huge promises to his fanbase, the tough spot is his doing. The fact they are in the position they are in at all is an indictment on the front office and executive branch IMO.

George Prax's picture

Can't disagree with that reasoning, you're right. But I'd still give him the summer to see what he has up his sleeves (probably a sandwich, but nonetheless).

saneopinion's picture