The Calgary Flames prospect pipeline is an interesting combination when you look at it top to bottom.There is some exceptional high-end talent coupled with some depth players and role players, who seem like grinders at best. In other words, there may be a lack of middle ground from the high to the low. Nevertheless, the team has on hand some really strong blue-line depth and some reasonable center depth with several individual players having strong years. This is a system bristling with high end talent, but there is some considerable risk as well. There are some big moves and a few surprises in this mid-season rank to boot, so strap in.
The struggles of the Calgary Flames in the 2015-16 season have been high-profile. They have failed to build upon a Cinderella run last year that saw the team beat the analytics and crash out after getting to the Division Finals. With struggles coming from the big club, you would like to at least see some good coming from their AHL affiliate in their inaugural season in Stockton, California. Unfortunately, it that has not been the case.
The Grand Rapids Griffins are named after a mythical creature – one that is part lion, part eagle — but the Detroit Red Wings prospects season has followed the path of another mythical beast.
Let’s just call them the Grand Rapids Phoenix with how they have burned up and then rebuilt under first-year head coach Todd Nelson. Read more»
Jon Gillies doesn’t look or act like a rookie for the Stockton Heat.
The 21-year-old goaltender is calm and poised while defending the net for the Calgary Flames’ AHL affiliate, and he doesn’t get rattled by the big moments. He is also a leader in the locker room for a team that is playing its first season in Northern California. Read more»
Calgary Flames General Manager Brad Treliving has acquired an embarrassment of riches in the course of his tenure, and recently started to see results from past drafts and acquisitions. After a surprising 2014-15 season, the Flames should shed the label of underdogs, as former prospects like Josh Jooris and Sean Monahan graduated along the way to leading the scrappy Flames into the playoffs.