We got nothing. Nothing new, at least.
We don't get the first line. Do not get it. Specifically, we do not get why the Flames keep insisting on using Olli Jokinen as a centre. Notwithstanding the fact that the Flames came into camp so in shape that every time one of them throws a bodycheque they hit the IR, which we understand may have necessitated using Joker in the role, he should not be centre on that line. In fact, he shouldn't centre any line we have on the team. He shouldn't, because he should be employed as a winger.
Olli Jokinen is 6'3, 215 pounds, and shoots left. Which means if he plays on the wing opposite our Elvis the Flames would boast two power forward body types who shoot from the wrong side. It would mean the Flames would feature two wingers who love love love to cheat for offense. It would mean whoever centres that line would have all his hair turn grey and fall out prematurely (which makes it a good thing we signed both Conroy and Tanguay, because Conroy couldn't possibly get any older, and Tanguay couldn't get any balder). But unless the coaching staff divorces itself from the notion that Iggy and Joker have to play together, it is the only way to employ them that makes any sense.
Like we said, nothing new here. Joker is a shooter, Iggy is a shooter. The facilitator on that line happens to play all the way across the ice from the dynamic duo. The facilitator on that line, who plays left wing, also happens to have the best vision on that line. The guy with the second best vision on that line? Jarome. It isn't even Joker, who plays the centre. This makes little sense.
If the Flames brass wants to play Jarome and Joker together, which we don't think is the best way to employ the resources of this team, Joker has to be moved to the wing. We have a season plus of evidence to show that they don't work as a centre-rightwing combo. We have no evidence to show us how the combo would work as LW-RW, but we have inclinations it might work. Again, both are shooters, both are big bodies, both try to get theirs. Remember the last time we had a scoring winger to play with Jarome? That Iginla-Camo combination certainly sucked.
Jarome is a shooter, Joker is a shooter, Hagman is a shooter, Bourque is a shooter. Those should be your top six wingers. Tanguay should be a centre, especially considering the injury situations the team finds itself in. Hell, if the team is so desperate for centre's that they convert David Moss we would love to hear the argument against making Tanguay a centre (and please don't say size. That would make you look silly, eh D Roy?). Conroy should be a centre, or an option to centre that line, because he has an actual brain in his head and knows the game. Matt Stajan and Mike Backlund are the other two centres this team has, and we would content that both of them would be better options at centre than Joker.
Joker has a certain level of suck, for sure, but some of that may be just the way he is used. We are very glad he has been a centre his entire career. That doesn't make him a centre. 90 points in the SE for a Florida team that let him get away with anything he wanted, in retrospect, doesn't impress. He didn't do anything in Phoenix (besides dividing the locker room, if you believe the rumours) and besides that one game in Philly, what has he done here to prove he is a centre, let alone the mythical beast that is 'Top Line Centre'?
There are better options on this team to use as the centre for Jarome. If the coaching staff insists that Joker and Jarome play together, then Joker should be moved to the leftwing, and someone else should be moved to centre. We would try Tanguay or Conroy, but that's us. That would allow the team to still then use Backlund and Stajan on the other lines.
The best reason to not make this move is the worst reason. It may hurt the players feelings. Is that a good enough, a compelling enough reason not to try to improve the team? We don't think so. Let's be real here, ok? Tanguay signed with us as soon as we called. That means he didn't think other teams were going to call, not with anything more than a minimum value contract. The same story with Joker, he signs with a team that exiled him, with the full tar and feather treatment. He signs with that team as soon as it calls him on the first day of free agency. Both these players are desperate, and have signed contracts that reflect that. Both Tanguay and Joker are playing here to get another contract in the 4 plus million dollar range in a year or two. The Flames are doing those two a big favour by having them on the roster. If they ask those two to jump, the answer from both of them better be something like 'how high?'.
Of course, the team could simply recognize the fact that Joker is what he is, and what he is is a shooting guard that comes off the bench. In hockey terms, he should be providing offence for a checking line. He should be with Glencross and Jackman, not Jarome.
Why is George Johnson trying to humanize a guy who is stealing money from the Calgary Flames?
Cards on the table moment: We here at Dome Beers are fans of the Calgary Flames. Specifically, we are fans of the Calgary Flames winning. Players on the roster that do not help with that do not get any love from us. We don't care if they are good people who donate 90% of their money to charity. Score a fucking goal.
Players who get 3.5 million dollars to play hockey better fucking play hockey, period. If they find themselves sitting in the press box, maybe they should retire, no? Pride may be a sin, but we are also aware of the more humanist classical philosophies, too. To those ancients, pride was to be protected. If a warrior lost his ability, nobody thought twice if he retired the sword and picked up the spade. It was commended, because they felt that was the way to protect ones pride, ones reputation (also, if you stayed out in the martial field when you lost a step, you died).
Corey Sarich is not a top 4 blueliner in the NHL, not on any team that matters. He makes 3.5 million dollars. Good for him for cashing in, we don't besmirch him for that. But is 3.5 million dollars worth your pride? Corey Sarich is one of the last 'Old NHLers'. He is a dinosaur. The team is using him in the press box. You know what that means? It means that nobody would trade for him, and the interest level was so low that the team doesn't even think that if they play him minutes and try to showcase him they will be able to generate interest. Corey Sarich can only play for the Calgary Flames at this point in his career, and only because Darryl gave him an insane contract. And as of today, he can't even do that.
Corey has had a good career. He has gotten paid and he has won a Stanley Cup. Is 3.5 million dollars worth it to a man who was once a player in this league to sit in the press box for 70 games?
Johnson regales us with tales about Sarich and how he enjoys spending time with his family. If he can't beat Staios, Pardy, or Brodie into the lineup, maybe it's time he makes being a dad his full time job.
Sarich, in case you were interested, should be playing ahead of Staios, in our opinion. Steve Staios getting the start smacks of politics.
Even if Staios is better than Sarich, which he isn't, he still shouldn't be starting ahead of him. He is a fucking Oiler. And he isn't like Glencross, who had a cup of coffee with them. He is a blue and copper blooded Oiler.
And Morrison still makes our stomachs churn. That signing looks awesome now that we are employing him as a winger. Hey, we know who could play wing...
Finally, if anyone from the Flames HR department is reading this, you need to know you fucked up big time with your entertainment department hirings. We wouldn't be shocked to find out you went young, which means cheap and inexperienced. For an organization that prints its own money, we find some of their resource allocation puzzling.
Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias should be fired.