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Season Preview: Calgary Flames

Updated: Oct 4, 2022

Conference: Western

Division: Pacific



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Offseason



Additions: Jonathan Huberdeau, Nazem Kadri, Mackenzie Weegar, Kevin Rooney, Nicolas Meloche

Subtractions: Johnny Gaudreau, Matthew Tkachuk, Sean Monahan, Erik Gudbranson, Michael Stone, Brett Ritchie, Brad Richardson, Calle Jarnkrok, Ryan Carpenter


There was no shortage of news this offseason coming from Calgary. The Flames saw perhaps their two best players leave the team in Gaudreau and Tkachuk, but GM Brad Treliving did his best to recoup - and perhaps improve upon - his roster this season by adding Huberdeau and Weegar from Florida and Kadri from free agency after he walked away from the defending Cup champs.


 


Injury Report



Probable For Opener: Milan Lucic (Shoulder), Nikita Zadorov (Ribs), Andrew Mangiapane (Wrist), Oliver Kylington (Shoulder)

Questionable For Opener: Chris Tanev (Shoulder)

Out To Begin Season: -None-

Out For Season: -None-


After battling last season, the Flames have a few players with some dings. They hope to have everyone ready to begin the season but Chris Tanev's shoulder surgery recovery might require a little more rest and rehab before full contact.


 

Projected Lineup

(league ranks in parentheses)



Forwards (5th)

Jonathan Huberdeau - Elias Lindholm - Tyler Toffoli

Dillon Dube - Nazem Kadri - Andrew Mangiapane

Adam Ruzicka - Mikael Backlund - Blake Coleman

Milan Lucic - Kevin Rooney - Trevor Lewis


Defense (9th)

Noah Hanifin - Rasmus Andersson

Mackenzie Weegar - Chris Tanev

Oliver Kylington - Nikita Zadorov


Goalies (19th)

Jacob Markstrom

Dan Vladar


A new-look lineup that added another top-six center to its fold makes the Flames' projected forward lines a little more balanced and less reliant on one line to carry them. The only spot up for grabs seems to be a bottom-six wing role, where Ruzicka's performance last season with the big club probably gives him the initial edge. Jakob Pelletier and Cole Schwindt also expect to compete for that spot in camp.


Weegar swaps in for Gudbranson and instantly improves the defense, and Markstrom should be relied upon heavily this season to backstop Calgary in net.


 


Dynamic Players


Snipers: Adam Ruzicka

Playmakers: Jonathan Huberdeau | Nazem Kadri

Volume Shooters: Nazem Kadri | Tyler Toffoli | Blake Coleman

Play-Drivers: Andrew Mangiapane

Shutdown Defenders: Chris Tanev

Shot Blockers: -None-

Hitters: Milan Lucic

Enforcers: Milan Lucic

Penalty Drawers: Nazem Kadri

PP Specialists: Elias Lindholm | Nazem Kadri | Rasmus Andersson

PK Specialists: Rasmus Andersson

Faceoff Specialists: Elias Lindholm | Mikael Backlund


 


Fantasy Impact


Studs: Jonathan Huberdeau, Jacob Markstrom, Elias Lindholm, Nazem Kadri

Duds: Rasmus Andersson

Sleepers: Mackenzie Weegar

Other Roster Worthy: Tyler Toffoli, Andrew Mangiapane, Noah Hanifin


The Flames have some fantasy powerhouses here at key positions with Lindholm, Kadri, and Markstrom. Not to mention one of the highest project scorers from the wing in Huberdeau.


The question marks really begin on defense, where Andersson was successful as the primary pointman on the powerplay last season, but may cede powerplay time and value now not only to Noah Hanifin, but Weegar as well. If Weegar can capture the top powerplay spot, his value should skyrocket as he's expected to play a key role at even-strength and on the penalty kill too.

2022-2023 PuckLuck Projections

PLAYER

POS

G

A

PTS

W

GA

SV

SO

Jonathan Huberdeau

F

34

70

105

Jacob Markstrom

G

38

169

1714

5

Elias Lindholm

F

40

44

83

Nazem Kadri

F

29

53

82

Tyler Toffoli

F

27

32

59

Mackenzie Weegar

D

10

22

32

Rasmus Andersson

D

5

40

44


 


Betting Impact



PuckLuck Projection: 102 points

Floor: 86 points Ceiling: 111 points


Projection Data Confidence: 85%

(League Average: 70%)


PuckLuck Odds:

  • Stanley Cup: +550

  • President's Trophy: +700

  • Conference: +300

  • Division: +250

DraftKings Sportsbook Lines:

  • Stanley Cup: +1800

  • President's Trophy: +1500

  • Conference: +700

  • Division: +240

The one futures advantage we see here is the Flames to win the Western Conference, if you're looking for a team to ride besides the heavy favorite Avalanche. They're of course also good bets to repeat as the Pacific Division champs, although it might take a little bit for an overhauled roster to mesh.


There's plenty of player data to support our projection here for the Flames, which means you can role with our betting and fantasy advice with confidence early in the season. It should be noted that this team may give up a little more goals than you might expect from a Darryl Sutter-coached team, simply based on the history of defensive play of the key newcomers and players in bigger roles.


 


Season Outlook



Division Projection: 3rd

Conference Projection: 5th

League Projection: 11th

Playoffs? Likely


Third in the division might raise the question of who we have projected to finish higher, but we'll get to that later. The Flames should be pretty safe bets to lock down a playoff spot however. With a more balanced attack, improved blueline, and continued solid goaltending from Markstrom, there's no reason to believe a huge drop-off is in order. Full marks to Treliving for keeping this roster competitive when it looked to be doom and gloom early on in the offseason.


Will the Calgary Flames make the playoffs?

  • Yes

  • No




 


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