Western Conference preview: Calgary Flames

Western Conference preview: Calgary Flames
August 7, 2013, 7:45 pm
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Calgary Flames goalie Joey MacDonald (35) reaches for the puck against the Chicago Blackhawks during the third period at the United Center. The Blackhawks beat the Flames 3-1.

(Mandatory Credit: Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports)

CALGARY FLAMES

2013 Record: 19-25-4, 42 points

Where they finished: 4th in the Northwest; 13th in the West; 25th in NHL

Coach: Bob Hartley (2nd season)

Key additions: RW David Jones, LW TJ Galiardi, D Kris Russell, D Shane O’Brien, G Karri Ramo

Key departures: G Miikka Kiprusoff

Projected lineup

Forwards

Mike Cammalleri – Mikael Backlund - Jiri Hudler

Curtis Glencross – Matt Stajan – Lee Stempniak

Sven Baertschi – Sean Monahan - David Jones

TJ Galiardi – Corban Knight – Tim Jackman

Defensemen

Marc Giordano – Chris Butler

TJ Brodie – Dennis Wideman

Kris Russell - Shane O'Brien

Mark Cundari 

Goaltenders

Karri Ramo

Joey MacDonald

Our take: Things could get ugly in Calgary and that’s probably a good thing. With franchise star Jarome Iginla traded last season and defenseman Jay Bouwmeester right behind him, the familiar faces are few and far between.

It’s time to add more talent to the farm system and that process has begun under general manager Jay Feaster. But that also means top free agents won’t give your team a look and the Flames didn’t make any splashy signings this summer. If that means another high draft pick next June then so be it.

With longtime goalie Miikka Kiprusoff likely retiring, Calgary will turn to Karri Ramo, who has spent the past four seasons playing well in Russia after an ugly stint with Tampa Bay early in his NHL career. But it won’t be near enough to lift a rebuilding team into the playoffs in the difficult Western Conference. There’s a ways to go here.

Offseason Grade: D

Will they make the playoffs in 2013-14: No.