I ask for a moment of creativity, a chance to hope for the future to be better than it was last season. The Flames are so close to the playoffs, it’s ridiculous. Take a look at the standings from April:
|Teams||Wins||Losses||Over Time Losses||Total Points|
That record landed the Flames in 9th place. So close to the playoffs and yet so far. Ahead of the Calgary Flames for a playoff bid? In 8th, as we all know is the LA Kings who finished their season 40-27-15 with 95 points and in 7th was the San Jose Sharks who finished 43-29-10 with 96 points.
This is where I ask for a little lead way with my ideas. And I’ve checked over my math a dozen times and will scream if someone manages to find a flaw in this.
The Flames went in to OT/SO 21 times over the course of the season. In those 21 games, the Calgary Flames walked away victorious 5 times. Twice, the Flames won against the LA Kings (1/19) and San Jose Sharks (3/13), once in a SO and once in OT. Had the Calgary Flames managed to win in regulation, it wouldn’t have added more points to the Flames side, but it would have taken away a point from both the 7th and 8th place team. Something critical for a team on the bubble.
On January 17th, the Flames lost in a shoot out to the Sharks, had they pulled it out to win, it could have swung the results. A win in regulation could have given the Flames 94 points and the Sharks 93 points. That puts the LA Kings in 7th and the Flames in 8th (tie breaker going to the Kings). And yes, this is all “best case scenario” but what I’m getting at is the Calgary Flames don’t need to have this insane turn around.
If each player not named Jarome Iginla could score just 3-5 more goals over the course of the season, the playoff standings would be completely different looking. While teams are out scrambling to get that big name goal scorer, the Flames are in a position to look internally.
Call it naive, call it short sighted, and poor planning, but the I really believe the Calgary Flames can scrap together a season that positions them for a successful post season. The loss of Olli Jokinen won’t have much of an impact on the goal scoring situation if Jiri Hudler keeps up what he was doing last season.
It’s only July 11th but I’m looking forward to and rallying for the 2012-2013 season. I can feel it. The Calgary Flames will go far this season. They will finally stop “rebuilding” and move forward. Maybe not Cup contenders, but certainly not the struggling organization the Western Conference loves to laugh at.
Go Flames Go!