Thursday, December 29, 2011

Stuff N Junk

Such a fucking glutton. Nobody needs a $300 dollar hockey stick. Until you get one in your hand.

What? Nothing.

Ok people, here are our thoughts, not that they are deep or consequential or anything.

We don't like the spin that the team has been playing 'better team defence' in their four game win streak. Ya'll watching some of those games? River hockey against a team you should dominate, Columbus, is not 'better team defence'.

Other than that? Meh. Caught the radio show on the FAN this morning. They were talking about how it would surprise nobody if the Flames lost this game against the Islanders, and we think that is a pretty accurate statement. Which is a big statement in and of itself, right? It's a theme here on DB, hope and faith and how those sentiments relate to the team, and how the team can affect those sentiments in their owners/management/fans.

Buy in is a big thing. In sports, business, life. There is a concept in the Japanese warrior code that we like to relate to the concept of 'buy in'. It's the concept in Bushido of accepting death. Think about that for a moment, how unnatural that is, to embrace death. The human body isn't build for it. It fights against death with every beat of the heart and expansion of the lungs. Your body embraces life.

The embrace of life, however, is the font from which fear flows. And as the Bene Gesserit say, fear is the mind killer (You are reading DB, so excuse us if we assume you are into overwritten works of literature). Inaction stems from fear. Hesitation stems from fear. Fear stems from the embrace of life.

The Japanese fought battles in close quarters, with deadly Katana. Hesitation and inaction would kill a person. Hence the Bushido code to embrace death. If one embraces death, accepts it, honours it, hesitation and inaction are no longer viable options. They disappear, and the effectiveness of (in this case) a Samurai rises exponentially.

Getting back to the point, this is an illustration of the power of buying in. It creates utility, and is essentially free, because it is made of faith. Which is also what makes it so fragile and easily shattered. It isn't made of anything tangible but the moment, and moments pass.

The fact that the Flames fans and the media following this team are half expecting the team to lose to the Islanders is, while harmless in the short term, a reflection of just how bad this team, or rather, how frustrating this team has been over the long term. Frustrating is the better word, we think. This team has been oversold as a Cup contender for about the five years previous to last, and this year and last has been sold as a playoff team. That oversell isn't entirely on the players, and we bring it up to highlight the fact that had they not been oversold with expectations that we know in hindsight where much to high, the fanbase may be treading lighter with this team. But time machines don't exist, and the damage to the brand has been done.

That's one of our main beefs with Ken King, to be honest; the way he has let the brand atrophy under his watch is disgraceful.

What's the point of this whole little diatribe? Nothing so deep as a Herbert epigraph: The Flames play the Islanders tonight. A victory does a little towards restoring the faith; a loss may destroy it completely.

Go Flames, go.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

This Team Isn't Good Enough

For the first time in a long time, the Calgary Flames have some momentum.

Speaking as fans, that is a good thing. When was the last time this team surprised you, in a good way? Been way too long, and because of that, the win in Vancouver felt great.

Was it symbolic because it represents a true turning of the corner for the squad, or was it just a continuation in the ebb and flow of a .500 hockey team?

While we loved beating Vancouver as much as everyone else, we feel it is more of the latter. A team that had lost 4 straight then goes on to win 3 in a row. The definition of a .500 team, pretty much.


It was only one game, it is true. But it showed something from the club. Usually, when the Flames play a team that is better than them, we think they have a tendency not to try. We think they don't try as hard as they can in order to avoid the questions that would come if they did try their hardest and still got blown out. But against the Canucks, we think they showed some courage. They showed up to play, win or lose.

That's a big step for this team, in our opinion. Maybe they are sick of getting shit on. Who knows?

Should they be rewarded for it? know, if you read this spot, that we don't think the team is talented enough to win a Cup. We still don't think they are. So the question is, do we buy, or do we sell?

The Flames have one scoring line. They have a solid bottom six. They do not have a second scoring line. The Flames have a single defenceman on the roster, Bouwmeester. The rest of them are, to us, average level nothing special guys. They have a goalie, and for the first time in a while, may even have depth in goal.

If you are inclined to want to add, then the question is whether this team has enough assets available to buy the missing pieces. Even with Gio coming back, the team, to us, seems to need at least one defencemen (PK! Weber!), and it needs a second scoring line. Especially if Bourque continues to be Bourque, and Tanguay is legitimately injured. Hell, you might have to add three players, two forwards and a defenceman.

That's not going to be cheap. Moreover, it would take a level of intestinal fortitude that the current management has shown it does not possess.

Not that they need our advice, but if they asked for it, we would tell them to ignore what the fans think. Lets be real: if this team sells at the deadline, the fans will whine, because a lot of the fans of this team are mouthbreathers who think we are capable of winning with the current roster. If they trade Iggy or Kipper, look out. But if they buy, the rest of us will whine, because the risk we would be assuming in order to win now would be very high.

It's lose lose either way, almost, from a management perspective. Whatever they do, they better not stand pat. It better be a buy or sell scenario.

We bet they buy. It's Feasters first year, and we doubt he wants to be known as the guy who guaranteed a playoff spot for the team and then had his team miss the playoffs. And honestly, if they were to buy on someone young and dynamic, we wouldn't scream to loud. 

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Carlos Marmol Saves

They be heart attacks, yo.

Which is what the Flames tried to give us all last night. Seriously, you would think a Brent Sutter coached team with Kipper in net would be able to sit on a 3 goal lead. It's what those guys are collecting a paycheque for. But for whatever reason, whether it was the Red Wings picking it up, or the Flames giving it away, this team certainly appeared to try to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

Which leaves us looking at quotes. (Stolen from the WaPost)

Coach Babcock (hehe) "I thought (the Flames) looked great coming out of their zone until the third period, and obviously then we dug in and made the game close. I thought even at the end we had lots of opportunities, but the hockey gods look after the team that plays the longest and they deserved to win, not us.

Now if we didn't know any better, we would say that sounds like Babcock calling out his team for getting worked by the Flames for the first two periods of this hockey game. We think he thinks his team took the game off till the third.

Flames had a great game until the third...we dug in and made the game close = my idiot swedes didn't start playing until the third.

Which ok, interesting theory. Glencross, any thoughts on the issue?

"We got off our guard a little bit. We just had to keep going and play the way we did the first two periods (and) we would’ve been better off. We got through it and got the two points.”

Lovely to hear, eh? The Flames, a wounded team, took the third period off (by Glencross's own admission) against a team they know can come back on them. In a game they (the Flames) kinda had to have following the disastrous road trip.

Honestly, what is more worrisome? That Detroit thinks the Flames require only a periods worth of effort to dispatch, or that the Flames feel they don't need to play a full 60 minutes against a great team like Detroit?

To us, it is the latter. These guys just don't appear to get it. Look, there is that adage that one shouldn't critique the wins, but that is bullshit. The real issue at hand is the issue of faith: Do we (collective we, the fanbase, all of us) have faith in this teams ability to compete at a high level if by some miracle it were to make the playoffs. The clubs mission should be to show enough that we, the fans, can start to reasonably believe in their abilities to pull off an upset in the first round. And performances like last nights, where the team has their backs against the wall in a sense and still chooses to give only 40 minutes of actual committed play (we will go with Glencrosses scenario over Babcocks, even though we are more inclined to believe Babcock) do not build faith.

Well that was a fucking downer. Get some pussy, DB, and cheer up.

Well, besides pussy, which is always a pleaser, there is one thing that would cheer DB up considerably. And that is PK Subban.

Forget the name or the position. This team could use some dynamism. PK offers that. Plus his coach hates him, and his GM is all in a Darryl Sutter panic.

Can you imagine PK, Brodie, and Bouwmeester on the same blueline? Smooth.

Yeah motherfuckers, that's DB talking adding pieces. Teams .500 right now. To me, it looks like a 90 point team, which means they have to swing a trade (if they add) that nets them like +10 points. Now, five games plus is going to require a real player (maybe two), which is going to require the Flames give up a real draft pick (maybe two).

But that gets us back to the point about faith. If the team makes a big splash, and we still miss the playoffs, or get out in the first round, people will not be impressed, and the most likely outcome of that scenario is that Ken King or Jay Feaster lose their jobs. (Suddenly you realize why we are big supporters of adding). Because we know that King is in regime survival mode, he probably won't be inclined to take a big risk. Especially if he sees his team unable to give a full 60 minutes against really good teams.

Which is the rub. It should be clear to everyone that this team is just not good enough. But it isn't the Islanders either. You can squint and go either way. It's on this team and the players then, to provide an emphasis for management to add. If they saw the team going out and giving a huge effort and still losing, it is easier to talk yourself into buying.

But we don't get that. We get 40 minutes, not 60. Which is frustrating.

Of course, the other perfectly reasonable option is to blow this thang up. But you know what? If management had any confidence in their own abilities to enact a rebuild, they would have done it last offseason, no?

Short of regime change, a blowup aignt happening. These people probably hold pat at the deadline. Which is stupid. Has to be one or the other, buy or sell. And you know what, it probably isn't prudent, it probably isn't the most rational thang, but we would add, provided, again, that the team was adding a real player.

If we don't see ya'll over the weekend. Merry Christmas.

Thanks for the continued support of this site. Sincerely appreciate it.

We have no idea if our 'ratings' are good or not. YTD the google analytics tells us we had 35,000 visitors, with 16,000 absolute uniques. That means we are up like 100%. Again, we don't know if that is good or bad in the absolute, but honestly, for idiots like us to have that many people come by is very humbling.

We don't make money off the site, and our tone precludes us from taking credit for it in real life (like we doubt we could get a job if we told people we were DB because we take shots at so many), so essentially we write for us, and we write for you. The fact that people show up is the reward, in other words. So thanks for showing up.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardis Ken King should be fired.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Happy Hanukkah

We have been shitty the last two weeks. Holiday season, bitches.

We will probably be back Friday with the RTPIC, which we are going to start doing again.

Until then.

Oh wait. Someone sent us an email saying this humble little site was on Ken Kings shit list. If anybody knows anything about that, we wouldn't hate you if you spilled the details.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Monday, December 19, 2011

DB Gives Flames Level Effort

We suppose we should post something...

But we can`t lie. It`s hard for us to get excited. We hate this team.

Back later.


Wednesday, December 14, 2011

DB Exclusive: What The Sedin's Bunk Beds Look Like

Dave Bolland, saying what we all think, QOTD: "And, yeah, they probably still would be sisters. I think they might sleep in bunk beds. The older one has the bottom one, the younger one got the top."


While the reaction has been mixed to Bolland's comments, many people have come out to condemn the comments. But this ignores the point; The question is, do the Sedin's share a bunk bed?

Here at Dome Beers, we employ a crack team of private dics, for situations just like this. We sent them out today, and much to our surprise, they were able to get the goods. Yes, our team of P.I.'s, much like the patrons of Vancouver's 'Celebrities Night Club', were able to get inside the Sedin's bedroom.

The results? About what you probably expected. Yes, the Sedins do in fact share a bunk bed. And yes, it is pink.

Picture below:
Daniel Sedin (front) picked the covers herself

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Cheer Up, Here Is Shaq Shattering A Backboard

You know. Because.

Feel free to vent in the comments. And don't worry, we will throw up a proper post sometime this week (because we know ya'll was so worried).

Also, the short posts that have been popping up this week...yeah, we doubt that is going to be the new style here. Just a one week thang, probably.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

More Useless Stats

More differentials. Standings from on 12/13/2011
5-5 Differentials.

So it appears that, as of now, there are really only three teams that are excelling at 5-5.

Now, let's look at PP-PK differential.

Ouch. One team seems to be excelling, and it's the dive bomb Canucks.

Fucking pussies. Real men score 5-5.

You know, sometimes we look, and honestly, it looks like the Flames are a player or ten away from being something legit. Being even at PP-PK is probably fine in isolation. But they are also even, or to be intellectually honest, they are below even, at 5-5 as well. You have to be a great team to win if your margins are that slim, and the Flames are pretty far removed from great, in personnel, management, and the coaching departments.

Now, there are two ways to address the differential on 5-5, and that is with more scoring or allowing less goals. But to go from a -1 to a +10 is probably going to take both. We definitely need to upgrade the defence, but we would probably be wise to upgrade the offense as well.

Silver lining? Every team in the West is flawed in some way.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Useless Stat

We like looking at scoring differentials...


These stats are of 12/12/11, by the way. Anyways...

Detroit and Vancouver look to be the big bad bullies, with Minny and the Blues that second tier. Phoenix and Dallas look like teams that may fall out of the top eight.

Of the teams not in the playoffs, the best bets to rise up look to be...the Oilers? There is a flaw in this method, obviously...

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fire.

Non Sports: The Dreams In The Witch House Edition

"...The ancient legends of Ultimate Chaos, at whose center sprawls the blind idiot god Azathoth, Lord of All Things, encircled by his flopping horde of mindless and amorphous dancers, and lulled by the thin monotonous piping of a demonic flute held in nameless paws."

Saw an interesting column by Hernando De Soto today, which exposes the fact that we have not been keeping up with Gray Lady like we should be, but alas, what can one do?

De Soto makes the point that the problem with the financial sector, and by extension the economy as a whole, is that we cannot trust the balance sheets of business, (and we will add here, specifically of the banks) and because of that, we cannot go ahead and make rational business decisions. It makes sense. If you cannot trust the price signals of whole classes of assets, how can one make a decision about, for example, whether an asset has fallen in value to a sufficient degree where one can buy it up, get rid of the deficiencies dragging its price down, and then sell the excess value created for profit?

In De Soto's words:

"How can anyone be comfortable extending loans if balance sheets don’t signal all the facts? If those who hold the assets and the risks cannot be easily located? How do you know which banks and countries are solvent, if you cannot determine how many toxic assets they hold; if the legal owners of mortgages can’t be found; if banks can’t clear their books because courts continue to stop foreclosures because titling is unclear; if there is little information on whether those who claim they can cover risk defaults have the assets to do so?

This, then, is not your usual financial crisis. The plummeting economy is the symptom. Diminishing knowledge is the disease. Without property and transaction records that allow us to infer potential benefits and losses, markets can’t work."

Right. Exactly. We still don't know what the toxic assets the government took of the banks balance sheets are worth. We still don't know how the derivatives left on the banks balance sheets are even valued. The big secret of the world economic system is that it is the ultimate 'Faith Based' system. And currently, the 'faith' has been broken, because, to regurgitate Soto, the balance sheets cannot be trusted.

But here is the thing: Do you have the stomach to pull back the curtain on the void? To step into the swirling chaos? To walk through the unlighted chambers of maddening infinity?

The balance sheets are cooked because no one dares allow the name 'Azathoth' leave their lips. Essentially, these are the companies that took TARP, or Son Of TARP, or some such bailout. All these companies now have suspect balance sheets. In fact, all of these companies could very well be bankrupt. Our favourite example to use is Bank Of America. Bank Of America should be dead; it has no money, it went bankrupt. But there it is, undead, and living on taxpayer funded morphine.

Not really a point to all this. The world will continue to muddle through until some adults who aren't afraid of nightmare come onto the scene. But the world seems to be run by pretenders.

Furthermore, I think Hank Paulson should be arrested.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Top Five Reasons Given For Missing The Flames Christmas Party

The sleigh bells are ringing, if you listen, and in the lane, the snow is glistening.

Yes, it is that time of year where thoughts turn to snowmen, mistletoe, and eggnog. Besides holiday cheer and red nosed reindeers, the season also brings another guest: The office Christmas Party.

At most office's, the idea of having to make it through a night where the liquor flows and the co-workers are easy fills most employees with dread. The trepidation is understandable. After all, who wants to deal with the consequences of one regrettable moment with Suzy the slutty secretary?

For the Flames and their employees, it is no different. In fact, with some of the stories floating around the organization about the tensions between the players and management,  it is a good bet that the Flames Christmas party would be a bit more awkward affair than a Lowe/Burke holiday family gathering.

Cancellations were expected, so we sent our crack team of investigative journalists down to the Saddledome to snoop around and see if they could find evidence of such. Our people managed to uncover the returned invitations to the Flames Christmas party. Below, we highlight five of the best excuses that were used by the players to get out of attending:

Dear Calgary Flames, I will not be attending the Christmas party because...

  • It's being held across town, and I don't really want to drive, so I am invoking my No Movement Clause.

  • I got the invitations late, and am unable to score a babysitter on the rush.

  • We may have overestimated how fun the second half of last year's party was.

  • I've actually requested a trade to another Christmas party. Preferably Toronto's.

  • I've just been diagnoses with a disease. I have apparently had it for the last two years.

We would also like to take this opportunity to clear up the rumours. The Dome Beers crew will not be attending the Calgary Flames Christmas party this year either, as showing up in underwear is against the dress code, apparently.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Matt Stajans Leadership Starting To Rub Off


Calgary ( - 26 games into the NHL regular season, it is safe to say that the Calgary Flames are not a gutsy hockey team.

Sundays loss to the Vancouver Canucks, occurring at a time when the fanbase was looking for reasons to believe, drove home the point that club President Ken King and GM Jay Feaster have built a team with an impressive lack of character.

The Flames are not only doing what it takes to lose on the ice. They are also proving to be a soft as snails group full of that disappointing characteristic that would allow a team to muster only two shots on goal in the final 40 minutes of what could be called the biggest game of their season.

"It all starts with Stajan. He is a real big leader for us in this locker room," offered head coach Brent Sutter.

"He really does inspire the teams play."

In his second year of a four year, $14 million dollar contract, Matt Stajan is finally starting to find his voice, and embrace his role as a locker room leader.

"He's real unprofessional about everything," 22-year-old forward Mikael Backlund said. "He doesn't work very hard in the weight room. In fact, I don't think I have ever seen him in there, but I don't go too often, myself. He doesn't really put in the extra work on the ice, either. He kind of just sits and mopes in his stall. He talks about Mats Sundin a lot, and how Mats used to make him lug his luggage around. He wasn't very good at that either, apparently."

"It's good to see. It's good to have a player like that, where, at my age, I can look and see what it takes to make it in this league."

It's obvious that Stajans lack of work ethic, preparation, and leadership are catching on with more people than just the younger players on the team. Jarome Iginla, who recorded 86 points in 82 games last season, is on pace to set his lowest shot total ever, and is currently projected to score just 20 goals if he continues at his current pace.

"Stajan is a big part it, for sure. He's not a good leader. You could tell as soon as he got in the room," captain Jarome Iginla said. "He's a guy who has played in three playoff games and has never been close to playing in the Stanley Cup finals. He hasn't been through it and he doesn't know what it takes to win."

"He has actually helped Jay (Bouwmeester) to fit in."

When told of what Iginla had said about Jay Bouwmeester and Matt Stajans relationship, Jay Bouwmeester declined to comment, citing "people make me nervous" before he uncomfortably looked around the room and calling for his mother.

While accolades from teammates are always a point of pride for an athlete, the fact that Stajans lack of intangibles are rubbing off on his teammates can be seen in the stat sheet, as well. The Flames are currently ranked 27th in the league in face-offs won, and are 2nd in the league in face-offs lost. They rank 27th in the league in terms of hits delivered, are 14th in the league in blocked shots, 24th in power-play success rate, 24th in shots taken per game, 26th in the league in terms of shoot out winning percentage, and sport the leagues 24th lowest win percentage when leading after the first period. But perhaps most indicative of Stajans influence is the fact that the Flames are ranked 19th in the league for total number of penalties committed.

"We really couldn't be achieving the lack of success without him," offered Flames GM Jay Feaster. "He really hasn't done anything for this club."

Since being acquired by the Flames, Stajan hasn't played in a number of scenarios and he also has not played big minutes. Head coach Brent Sutter has shown a tremendous lack of trust in Stajan.

"You couldn't ask for a better player who fits in with our organization," Sutter said. "He turns the puck over on both ends of the ice, is on the receiving end of big hits in the neutral zone, and doesn't really play well defensively. He doesn't have much offensive skill, either."

"Like I said, a perfect fit for our organization. We are just thrilled to have him."

Matt Stajan has 9 goals and 51 points in 123 games with the Flames spread over portions of three seasons. He is currently on pace to score zero goals this year, while averaging 10:44 of ice time.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Stajan Fights

Good on Stajan.

Butler should have fought as well. Really don't like that guy.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired. 

Flames Beat The Oilers

Hey, Flames:

We will buy some kneepads if you beat the Canucks.

You know what is fucking shocking? Coach Idiot decided to give Iggy a bunch of PP time. And he got a bunch of points because of it. Weird how that works out, huh?

As much as we hate to admit it, J Blow threw down 30 minutes last night, which is insane. Kudos. How the hell the team got away with playing Butler for 23 minutes...someone must have pictures of the hockey gods.

We still think the team needs to get off the Matt Stajan as whipping boy theme. We know he sucks, but Ian White sucked too, and healthy doses of PP time allowed the Maple Leafs to trade him to us. Team needs to suck it up and try to juice his numbers, even if it compromises the teams chances to win. It's the only way we end up getting him off the team.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Strictly For The Ladies

Meet the underwear wearing shit peddlers ruining Ken King, Jay Feaster, and Jarome Iginla's day.

 Say hello to Darren Dreger. Known as 'The Insider' to the legions of hockey fans who tune into his appearances on TSN to hear about the latest hockey gossip of the day, it may be somewhat of a surprise to know he is a proud member of the underwear blogging community. But did you really think he sits up at the TSN desk with suit pants on? CK's all the way, baby.

Bruce Garrioch, you sexy thang. This one will come as less of a shock to you, as Loose Bruce actually does have a blog. With a body like that, however, he eschews Moms basement and does his blogging from the lucky dime's bed he happens to be in that night.

When Jay Feaster talks about underwear wearing bloggers living in their moms basement starting Jarome Iginla trade rumours, he is most assuredly not talking about Diane Francis's pride and joy. The frequent guest of CBC's Hot Stove would never go on TV and say something like unnamed sources close to Iginla say he wants to be traded. He is too much of a respected journalist to do something like that.

Bob Mackenzie may or may not deserve to be here based on his underwear bloggin', but he definitely makes the list based on the strength of his abs. Stay vieny, big guy.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Thursday, December 1, 2011


But still, no posting.

Tomorrow maybe. We will see how that goes.

Everyone is waiting to see what the team does against the Jackets anyways, right?

Oh wait. Minor controversy that isn't really one.

You follow us on twitter? You should. We are super shiny.

Yesterday we tweeted: "So just told the QR guys that Ken King wanted him to shop Jarome when he was GM."

Because he did. Of course we are paraphrasing what the man said, and what the man said was basically that King had come up to him and asked him about whether or not they should see what Jarome was worth on the trade market, and he told King, again paraphrasing, that Jarome is a human, and if word got out he would respond like a human, and be upset and all that.

Anyways, Button said we were inaccurate.

Button: That's not accurate. We discussed exploring the value for Jarome. It was an internal discussion that was never put into action.

Which, whatever, you know? "We discussed exploring the value for Jarome. It was an internal discussion that was never put into action." sounds a lot like "Ken King wanted him (Button) to shop Jarome when he was GM." to us, but then again, we are simple pamphleteers.

Enjoy the game, everybody. God, we almost said that with a straight face. These guys are boring as shit to watch, eh? We have turned to taking a drink whenever our guys turn the puck over. Also, one drink for whenever you notice Stajan is out on the ice.

Speaking of Stajan, he should be getting fed PP time so he can get hot and the team can trade his ass to the Habs. Those idiots traded for Gomez, how hard could it be to convince them that Stajan just needs a change in scenery?

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Light posting.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Did Anybody Else Watch Youngblood Last Night?

Because it is some of the finest cinema ever created.

It even includes fencing.

Fuck Racki.

We also are officially christening John Gaudreau "Youngblood". Because you know he fucks the coaches daughter on the first date, too.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Tid Bits

We are on this whole "The Flames Have Shitty Management" campaign, and we have been on it quite a while. And while we may have been ahead of the herd on that point, it seems that our argument is starting to develop critical mass.

Already this year people who are carry much more weight than us have chimed in on the topic, and in our positions favour. As an example, Puck Daddy's Greg Wyshynski alluded to the fact that the Flames management had saddled Brent Sutter with a bad team, and then added a guarantee of a playoff birth just to see the look on his face. He then went on to say:

"The blame will be placed on the construction of this team if it goes off the rails, as Dome Beers notes in a post on Jay Feaster and Ken King: If Ken King and Jay Feaster sold ownership on this team being a good one, then that is on King and Feaster, not on the players. The players are who we think they are. They have been for at least two seasons. If management still has unrealistic expectations for them, or if they kept their jobs in the offseason by selling those expectations, that speaks to the talent and ability of the management, if you ask us."

We bring this up for a reason. Often, it takes an outsiders perspective to give one a true vision. People who are too close to something are too close, and they miss seeing things. While the local media in Calgary is content to blame the coach or more often the players, it seems that those outside the bubble and those removed from threats to access see something else entirely: They see bad management.

Ritch Winters, founder of hockey agency 'The Sports Corporation', took to twitter recently to lambaste what he perceives to be problems in the culture of hockey management. Mr. Winters is trying to establish an MBA program for sports management, so it is in his interest to present the current crop of managers as nincompoops. He wants people to enroll in his program. We understand that.

With that caveat aside, we thought we would take a look into what he had to say about the Flames, and specifically, to us.

Besides the current management of the Flames tendency to not know how to value their assets, or other organizations assets for that matter, one of the reasons we think they need to be fired is that under their watch, a culture of complacency has been allowed to develop. This is best embodied in the charge of 'Country Club' being leveled at the organization, a charge that has been around for many years. Put simply, we think it is much too comfortable to play in Calgary. Ritch Winters would seem to agree.

Some foreplay: Mr. Winters sent the these tweets:

"Bad ownership and management really is the problem with underperforming teams. No champs in management. Not likely to get one on the ice."

"Hockey reporters seldom give us much of what is wrong with hockey. Their buddies in management will cut them off. Its too bad for fans."

"Why is it teams under .500 think they still have a chance at this point? Smart owners refuse to recognize bad management is their problem."

"Jay Feaster did not select a single core player with 56 draft picks as GM in Tampa. How does he qualify 2 restock a team with no prospects?"

"Flames projected to miss playoffs for 5 more years based on best analytics available. Unless Leland can be Dominik Hasek. He just might be."

(Talking about the Flames vaunted 'new' scouting system) "They are old school. The changes they have made are 5 years behind the times - at least. They just don't know that."

You get the drift. And actually, he is saying things that we say here on DB, which is just the crazy, isn't it?

Anyways, getting to the point. We liked what Mr. Winters was saying, even granting him his salt, so we looked at his website. It has a page that shows you some of the clients the agency has. Some of the clients the agency has are Flames. Gio and Tangs.

Which we thought was a little odd. Here we have an agent who talked a lot of noise about when he was finding a team for Hossa, he used analytics to place him on a team with a great chance to win the Cup, allowing two of his players to sign in Calgary, who he very clearly does not think has a chance to win the Cup.

We then sent him a tweet: "I wonder if told Tanguay and Gio how bad the Flames were when he negotiated their contracts. "

We got a response: "I expressed that concern over and over. Other factors came into play. Family. Teammates. Money. Not as simple as u suggest."

Which to us is Black Rob. Because, with all do respect for Mr. Winters, it is as simple as we suggest: These players signed in Calgary because it is comfortable. Winning, as per the Sports Corporations founding member, was not as important as 1) Not having to move the family, 2) Playing with teammates they liked (we are assuming he is talking about Tanguay here but who knows), 3) The money they were offered (did the Flames bid against themselves?).

Seems simple to us: Winning isn't a priority with this club, with the management on it, or with the players on it. We have talked about it before, with regards to the Glencross contract. Again, reasons for signing were family, proximity to his land out in the country, and the ability to network with the local companies downtown. All reasons that have to do with comfort, and have very little to do with winning.

Fish rot from the head down. There is a culture problem in Calgary; it starts with Ken King and it permeates down through the organization. The term 'winning' has become a glibly used sales tool, as opposed to the organizations reason for existence. We are glad outsiders like Greg Wyshynski and Ritch Winters see it, and are pointing it out.

We are just wondering when the local season ticket holders, media, and fans will wake up, take a step back, and realize it, too.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Ha! Flames...

Burn this motherfucker down!

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired. I also don't think I am the only one.

Pope Maher's 20 Game Measuring Stick One Game Early!

This is a terrible way to start an article, so kids, don't copy our form. But...

The Million Dollar man was on twitter this morning, talking about how the Red Wing coach, Babcock, told him that 'the difference between winning and losing in this league is #HardOnCoaches' (And we are sure we linked that wrong).

Which we take to mean that Roger was pushing for this guy to be coach. Which we are totally down with. Dude is a cowboy.

Anyways, getting a little tired of the media covering for the coach. And we aren't bloodthirsty: Bowman behind the bench wouldn't make this group a Cup contender. But please, to act like the coach is completely 100% innocent of contributing to the suck of this club is a little much.

For whatever reason (poorly constructed roster, management guaranteeing that this poorly constructed roster will make the playoffs), this group is not clicking. The effectiveness of the coach figures into the equation somewhere. Ultimately, we think that if the players are not buying into what the coach is selling, then the coach isn't a good salesman.

Brent Sutter's approach to coaching, as far as we can tell, has been to tell his team, publicly and through the media, that they suck. It has been. When he says "We suck so much we have to play the trap to win because we really really suck", (which, for those of you who don't speak Sport is what he is really saying when he says the team needs to play a team game, and be defensively responsible and all that) you don't think that gets on the players? We do.

We are going to steal this from Craig Button, but we are stealing it because we think it is just good coaching: A coach needs to get his players feeling good about themselves, because players are soft and pampered, and soft and pampered people need to feel good about themselves in order to perform. Players don't like getting told about all the things they can't do. It's acid to their confidence, and we know it is hokey as fuck, but confidence and swagger matter, especially when you are playing in a league that has all the top talent in it.

Anyways, it is a moot point, because, as we said, it doesn't really matter who coaches this team. There are too many NTC's and multi-year contracts on the roster for the coach to wield the hammer of a demotion, and if he restricts the minutes of the guys he is warring with, Iginla and Tangs, then the club really won't win many games. He is in a spot.

He is a man, so he won't quit, but he should. Brent should say that King saddled him with a club that had a very small margin for error, and slim chances to compete, and then King had Feaster flap his gums in the media about how the Flames were guaranteeing a playoff spot, which only added to the infeasibility of the whole operation. He should point the finger of blame not on the players, but on the people who assembled the players.

Look, you can bitch about Jarome all you want, but Ken King is the guy who decided to build his team around a 34 year old right winger. OK?

We got a link for ya'll, provided by RC, and it shows the decline of Iginla at even strength.

But we will put it another way: Jarome is past 30. He was/is going to decline at some point, because time is an asshole. The club, in his post 30 years, if it had decided it was going to keep Iginla on the roster, then should have made finding the 'next guy' a bigger priority than it did. Because it didn't, it has no leverage in the current situation. They can't bench the guy because he is their best offensive player, even at 34.

To us, this is just another note in the long tale of Ken King mismanaging this club.

Fuck, like 1000 words later and we are getting to what we wanted to talk about. 19 games in, 20 games in following tonight, the Flames will be a sub-.500 team. As it stands now the team is 27th in the league for goals per game (2.21) and 15th in the league in goals given up per game (2.68). The PP is 24th at 13.6%, and the penalty kill is working at a 82.4%, good for 15th. They give up more goals then they score at even strength.

Good teams are good teams for a couple of reasons. One of the reasons invariably happens to be that they do something well. The Flames do something very well: They are amongst the top teams in this league at not scoring.

Peter Maher likes to say that you use the first 20 games to evaluate the club. Well, we see it sits (as of today pre-Red Wing game) six points out of a playoff spot, and would have to climb five teams to get into a playoff spot. Couple this with the clubs previous performance of win one/lose one, and the odds that this team will make the playoffs would certainly have to be described to be at the low end of the table.

The club, in our view, needs to start positioning itself for next year. The team had the first 20 games to show us they were legit, and they have not shown us that. It's time to evaluate who is going to stay for next year and who is going to go.

But wait. Here we are going to tie our anti-SutterBourque and Stajans (and Tanguays, but we realize we may be in the minority with that opinion), then they have to start getting those players to produce more. Well, how do you artificially juice someones scoring numbers? Gee, we don't know, maybe PP time and an offensive minded playing style?

We here at DB are suggesting that Coach Sutters win lose record is less important than whether or not we can get rid of the Stajan and Bourque contracts. And to get rid of those contracts, those players are going to need good box car numbers. Which means, even if it hurts the chances of the team to win, which it does, that Stajan and Bourque should be getting fed PP minutes. It also means that the team should open up it's system, to allow for more goal scoring chances. It's not like the players are going to get worse +/- numbers then they currently are...and we may even be able to juice some goals out of those cats.

This offseason the club is shedding 10 salaries, but it will retain what is the new 'core' of this team: Jarome, Kipper, Bouwmeester, Tangs, Bourque, Stajan, and Gio. Backlund will be an RFA. The team will need to decide if it can win with this group. We don't think it can. We don't think reality thinks it can either. So the group needs to be broken up as well, not just to recoup cap-space that could be spent on better players, but also to get some of that stench of failure out of the room, and give some space for some new players to breathe and develop.

As we said yesterday, the Brand has been tarnished. The club is irrelevant. It's gone past punchline territory to 'Oh wow that team is still in the league?" territory. The person most directly responsible for that is Ken King. This club needs to rebuild, yes. But not only on the ice. It needs a new vision. It needs a new President, a new GM, a new coach. It needs new hope.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

What do you say?

Breaking news: QR77 Sportstalk guys are DB.

What? For reals, brah. At least we think they are. They sounds like DB. Talk what DB talks, we mean.

Yeah dude. We will get to that in a second. But first:Put your hand up if you watched the whole game last night?

We are a bunch of marks. That's the only word to describe that shit. You guys know we like wrestling. Wrestling came on during the third period. You know what we did? We didn't flip the switch; bailouts are for pussies (Hang Hank Paulson!). We stuck with the boys. Because there was no way they were going to lose to Columbus, right? The comeback was going to be sweet.

Three shots in the third period? Like, you guys get how hockey is played, right? When teams are down by whatever, they usually try to score goals, so they open up, and they generate more shots. Conversely, teams with big leads tend to play a little more cautiously, and open themselves up to taking more shots against. This is elementary stuff.

The Flames were down by two goals going into the third, against the worst team in the league. Three shots?

You can tell me it's talent all you want, but three shots tells me that it isn't talent, it's 'give-a-fuck'. Fire the fucking coach.

Let's be real frank here: There is nobody on this team who is as good a player as Jarome Iginla. Which means the team is dependent on Jarome Iginla. That is self inflicted. It also means that if Jarome wants to stay, and is using his NTC to stay, or you can't get anybody to give you anything for him, then you have to make him happy. Otherwise, you are cutting off your nose to spite your face.

People don't want to fire the coach because we have fired coaches before. That is retarded. That implies we have hired the right coaches before. Playfair busted. Keenan was a joke, and Sutter is currently experiencing that peculiar joy of being made into a punchline. We have had to fire so many coaches, because they hire so many bad coaches.

Iginla got 45 seconds of power play time last night. He also had one shot on net. Coincidence? (Oh, and by the way, nice to see Glencross show up with a whopping zero shots on goal with 1:50 of PP time.)

Anyways, we started out talking about how DB was the QR77 Sportstalk guys. We did so because we wanted to make a point. Last night, after the debacle, we tuned into QR, because Bryn is awful and Overtime is Overtime. QR77 guy had a call in show going on as well, but holy shit is theirs better. Some good points were brought up, we thought, because they seemed to be points we have been making.

Which is crazy, right? How people who have never listened or read each other come to the same conclusions? There is a word for that, in the science, we think.

So what craziness was being talked about on QR? Well, in general, 'Fire Ken King' was brought up, and of course we thought it was deserved. But also the coach, kinda what we just touched on, and then someone called with an idea that we are going to promote (read: steal).

First, 'Fire Ken King' was good because QR77 guys had some things to impart. One, they told us that they were pretty sure when Brent Sutter was hired in the first place, that Darryl was not exactly a proponent of the move, and the move had been made by Ken King. Which is fucking huge, people.

You know how we charge that the organization is run poorly, and one of the signs of that is that Ken King acts like the GM? There are examples of this when it comes to Feaster, the best being that Feaster had to ask for permission to sign Baertschi, or how about Ken King signing Glencross. So the question has always been, how much power did Ken have when Darryl was around. And everyone has always assumed that Darryl was in control.

Well, Darryl Sutter was the GM, and Ken King signed the coach. To us, that implies that the current working hypothesis is wrong, and that Darryl was not the man in charge, and in fact, would have had his moves vetted by King. Moves like trading Phaneuf. Moves like extending Bourque and Stajan. Who knows how far it goes. King might be responsible for Bertuzzi, for all we know.

We think it's funny that the radio personalities on the FAN won't touch that subject on the air, but the station without the teams tentacles in it will. Odd, that.

Moving on to the coach. QR guys, like DB, wants the guy gone. Honestly, we don't understand all the cover Brent Sutter receives. And hey, dontcha know he is being covered for by the same guys who never bring up Ken Kings meddling influence (Hi Sportsnet personalities!).

We covered it. Brent Sutter is a shitty coach. You know how I know? HE HAS NEVER MADE THE PLAYOFFS WITH THIS TEAM. The counter-argument is that he has been saddled with a team that was incapable of making the playofffs. You know what? We don't give a shit. He took the job with eyes wide open. We highly doubt he would have bolted New Jersey for a worse situation (from his perspective at the time). Brent thought we were a playoff team when he signed here. He hasn't been able to get them into the playoffs. He is a shitty coach, QED.

Alright, and now for the brilliant idea we are proudly going to steal off a season ticket holder who called into QR77 last night. Because it is quite brilliant.

The Calgary Flames brand has lost it's lustre. It's pretty apparent. The Dome is not full anymore, and people are having harder and harder times offloading their tickets. Moreover, the actual experience of going to a Calgary Flames game is boring. Not only is it boring, but it has gotten stale.

It's time for a re-launch of the brand. It's time for the team to re-evaluate how they operate on the game day level (And on every level, frankly): The team needs to look at it's same old same old boring contests. It then needs to throw them out and come up with new ones. You know that host they have had forever? Steve Strapon? Fire that guy, too. New look, new blood. And while we are at it, fire the people responsible for the music selection at the Dome. These people are morons, they have been filling the Dome with shitty music since the lock-out ended. New look, new blood, new music.

And new fucking goal song, for Whalens sake. Seriously, if the person who gave the ok to use 'Ducksoup' as a goal song is still employed by the organization, then that is reason enough for wanting to get rid of Ken King.

Seriously. Ducksoup? We went to our cousins birthday party. She is nine years old. She was getting hyped at the Ducksoup. If nine year old girls are your intended audience, Calgary Flames, then you made the right choice to go with that song as the goal song.

Anyways, on the topic of new. Know what else you have to do in a brand re-launch? Clear out the people who tarnished the brand in the first place. That means Ken King is fired. Feaster will be fired because the guy who replaces Ken King is going to want his own guy in their. So Feaster is gone, too. You may want to fire all the scouts. You definitely will fire Coach Sutter, and you probably would fire his assistants too, because they perpetuate a style of play that is simply not watchable.

New style of play, too. With a new President (Lanny!) and a new GM (Whoever Lanny Wants!) and a new coach (Whoever the Guy Lanny Wants Wants!), we are probably going to get a new style of play to go along with...yes, new players.

Shorter DB: Ken King has ran this team into the ground. Because of this, the one thing that Ken King should be concerned with, the brand, has suffered. We are hack advertisers at heart: Damaging the brand is a cardinal sin. Ken King needs to be fired for what he has done to the brand.

The people defending the coach have an agenda. They like the guy, they are friends with the guy. So when you hear the guys on the morning show on the FAN deflect blame, know it is because they break bread with the man. Of course they want him to keep his job, being friends with a head coach of an NHL team is cool. Roger Millions is pretty much in the same boat.

The players may not be any good. That doesn't exonerate the coach: his best player hates him. That means the coach needs to go. And because the players are not any good, the person who assembled them needs to be fired. Ken King needs to go. On top of that though, the person who went out and said that this roster was 'playoff bound', Jay Feaster, either lacks the integrity to tell the truth to his customers, or he is terrible at evaluating talent. Either way, he needs to go to.

This org needs to clear house. It needs to bring in people who understand hockey for one, which means not another Ken King, and it needs to get people who understand how to build a hockey team in the post-lockout NHL. Which isn't Jay Feaster.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Monday, November 21, 2011

How To Make A Milskey

So Your Team Just Lost To Columbus?

- 2 shots Whiskey.

- 1 shot Milk.


Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Youth Is Wasted On The Young

"It took me 12 years, 13 years to realize that you gotta be able to play defence in this league if you want to help your team."


You want to know what happened? The Flames were so scared about getting embarrassed by the Hawks, they had no choice but to play a strong game.

There is a pulse!

Oh shit son! You know who the Flames play next? The Blue Jackets! Yes, those Blue Jackets!

Now, how do you ensure the team gets up against the terrible BJ's the same way they did against the Hawks? Uhhh, you kidnap their children dummy. Duh. Do it, Harvey. Do it.

We smell a win streak!

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Flames Not Getting Points In Losses

This is probably obvious, but hey, it's what we do.

Last year, the Flames were 41-29-12. Or in other words, they were 41-41. Being .500 in the NHL was not good enough for them to get into the playoffs last year, and it appears the team is going to be a .500 team again this year.

But what is even more worrisome is this: Of those 41 losses, 12 were overtime losses, which meant that the team collected points in 29% of the games it lost. So far this year the team is 7-9-1. It has only collected points in 10% of the games it has lost.

Three more games until Peter Maher's magical 20 game breaking in period is over and the Flames are bottom dwellers, who would have to jump six teams to get into a playoff position. It is not looking good.

How in the world did King and Feaster convince themselves that this team would compete for the division?

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Quickly On Bourque

We only had 10 minutes, so this is quick and dirty.

We would like to present the stat we think is important when it comes to Rene:

Also, you can check out the TSN page for his trips to the injury list.

You probably know where we are going with this. It's pop psychology and we get that. But we think Rene plays passively, plays small, because he is protecting himself. He hurt his shoulder real bad a few years ago (if we remember correctly). We think that type of injury, you carry it with you the rest of your life. In other words, the shoulder will never be 100%, dude knows it, and is careful of it.

Hence, he doesn't play like 6'2, 215 along the boards. Him being made of glass isn't new. Hey, look at this! Crazy.

Sometimes, it sucks being right.

The other point is that everyone who sees this guy as a 40 goal scorer...fuck off. Dude is damn near 30. It's the same shit with Glencross. You people think he is a 30 goal scorer. Guy has never scored 30, and he is 28 years old. If Glencross gets 20, you should be happy. Anything more than that is a bonus, and it shouldn't be banked on. Bourque has scored 30 goals in professional hockey one time. In Norfolk. If Bourque gets you 20 goals, you should be happy. Anything more than that is gravy.

Honestly, what we are going to highlight is this is yet another contract that was signed in the Darryl Era that did not pan out. What we are interested in, then, is what were the basic practices that the Flames employed during the Darryl Era as it related to scouting free agents, and in signing and negotiating contracts.

Obviously, this being Dome Beers, we want to know if the decision to say yes or no went through Ken King, as it does now, or if Ken King abdicated himself of that responsibility during the Darryl Era. But even beyond that, we want to know if the Flames have even done the basic self analysis that any real organization would have made. Have the Flames even looked at their practices? What changes have they made?

Outta time. More later, maybe.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

P.S. Keenan paraphrase: "My top four defencemen where hurt, and they still fired me. I don't mind saying this, because this is what I said to Ken King when he fired me."

Monday, November 14, 2011

Nik Hagman Claimed; Commentary To Follow

We know. You are all eagerly looking at your screens, wondering who we are going to link to, to tell us all about the (insert your reaction here) news that Nik Hagman was claimed off waivers by the Ducks?

If we start this article we are going to be here for four hours, and we don't want to be here for four hours. This here whole Hagman 'thang' is attached to a whole lotta other 'thangs', right? So that is a root canal we would rather plan out.

Hence, commentary to follow.

The one thing we will say, the knee-jerk we have, is that if we weren't the cynical fucks we are, we would say that it certainly looks like the Flames are putting themselves in a position to make an acquisition.

Big, mortgage-the-future-in-attempt-to-win-now trade? That would be very Flames of them...

Furthermore, I suggest mortgaging the future on Weber.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Lest We Forget

"Every man thinks meanly of himself for not having been a soldier, or not having been at sea." - Samuel Johnson

Words fail. How can words, mere symbols, hope to express the raw fires of emotion that burn in the human soul?

We are civilians, and as such, have the strange desire to romanticise the war and combat. We have deleted this column several times; but the more we write, the greater the temptation. We know this offends some soldiers, and hence the reluctance to indulge.

War is hell; Fathers weep for sons. But war is not evil. The Canadian soldiers who liberated Europe, twice in a span of mere decades, the soldiers who fought in Korea, the soldiers fighting in Afghanistan, they fight on behalf of an honourable nation, for a noble cause.

Words fail. We are proud of you. And you give us cause to be proud. 

Allow us a moment of blind nationalism: You, the Canadian soldier, defeated the Germans. Twice. You destroyed Prussianism. You either understand the magnitude and breadth of that accomplishment, or you don't.

We will end with the motto of the Cameron Highlanders Of Ottawa: "ADVANCE!"

God Bless The Canadian Soldier

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Check Back Tomorrow

Team got shut out at home. Speaks for itself.

Actually, a few things:

Matt Stajan got 27 seconds of PP time? If we are pretending we are trying to win, getting Matt Stajan going again would help that cause. Coach has a great opportunity to give him some minutes where there is the potential to get points, and chooses not to use it.

Don't like it. We aren't here to champion Stajan's cause; he is a tumour on the Flames. But if we are to get rid of this tumour, we might be served to at least juice his numbers up a little bit so that we can maybe trade him one day.

Whatever. The other thing is the coach himself. We watch a lot of sports, and we don't think there is another team out there that gets verbally murdered by it's own coach more than the Calgary Flames.

Last time we checked, it was Coach Sutter who decided who jumped over the boards. If the players the coach was sending over the board were sucking on the PP, perhaps the coach should try tapping other shoulders?

Anyways, we don't like any of this. The situation is getting sour, but that is a result, as we said last post, of the expectation level (on behalf of the front office) being higher than the talent on the roster would suggest it should be. Still, the sourness isn't good. People and players will get resentful and then the will have a mutiny on it's hands.

Domebeer-aholics, it's a little yawn inducing... the rampant suck of the club isn't making our muse move. When is Shea Weber getting here?

We will be better next time.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Fatster Speaks

First, before we begin: How often do you think he shaves his head?

Anyways, some real life honest to goodness noise broke over the weekend, kinda, sorta.

Have you heard the Flames are interested in trading for Kyle Turris? Oh you did? Like, a month ago?

Alright, we probably aren't going to waste our finger taps on that subject then. For the record, in case anyone is interested, we don't really get this whole 'Kyle Turris' thang. If this team feels it needs a centre, it makes them trading Daymond Langkow look really stupid. Not that it didn't look stupid at the time.

CAPSPACE! Oh yeah, we forgot... Hey, how many points does CAPSPACE have on the season again? Because Langkow has eight, which would put him ahead of every centre on this team, save the one rocking the tramp stamp.

Getting back to the point: Fatster managed to pull himself away from the buffet table long enough to make some loud, bravado-toned noises about the direction of Ken Kings club to the media. Fatster has been making noise for the entire road trip, but what is getting a lot of the buzz is his interview with Roger Millions during the games last night.

(An aside: We go to take a hot tub at like 11:30 last night, we turn on the radio and who do we hear but Pat Steinberg still doing Overtime: He plays the Fatster clip and then starts to wind down the show. AT 11:30! Who the fuck is calling the show instead of watching football?)

During the interview with the Million Dollar Man, Fatster talked about how the organization feels the team is a playoff team, how them not being in the playoffs isn't good enough, etc. The stuff he had said to the papers. He says the Turris thing is a media driven story (which he seems only to happy to fuel, by the way) and he isn't going to put in an offer sheet on him because Phoenix will match it (?).

Fatster then started to get very puffy and huffy as he began to talk about how the team is playing. He said something to the effect of "We (The Flames) don't score on the rush, it's been proven statistically this season, we need to cycle the puck to score." He then went on to say, and we paraphrase, "This team can't trade turnovers; It can't turn the puck over at the blue line or the neutral zone."(You know, unlike those fucking Canucks, who's entire gameplan is predicated on how many times they are able to turn the puck over in their neutral zone. What the fuck was Fatster trying to say?)

Obviously, if it ended up here, we are going to take a run at it.

#1: We (Flames management) think this is a playoff team.

And we wish we was a little bit taller.

Refresh our memories, did the Flames make the playoff last year? No? Oh, ok then. Did the Flames add any talent in the offseason that would help them make the playoffs? What's that? Oh, no they didn't? Ok then. What did they Flames do in the offseason? What's that? You say they traded Regehr off their blueline and Langkow was dealt because the team had so much centre depth they desperately tried to sign Brad Richards and trade for Kyle Turris?

So if we are following you, you are saying that the team got worse over the offseason, following a season where they did not make the playoffs. And management expects them to be a playoff team? Why?

Here is a chart we made last season, March 22nd, 2011.

The chart says the team didn't beat any good teams last year. Second half run and all.

Now, a team that was not able to compete with the big boys goes into the new season without having upgraded it's talent level (and because the team is old, one could argue they allowed the talent level to erode by bringing back the same players that didn't get it done last season, only this season they are a year older), in fact, having traded quality players off the roster, finds itself sitting outside of the playoffs. SHOCKING! WE ARE FUCKING SHOCKED BY THIS TURN OF EVENTS! WHO COULD HAVE SEEN THIS COMING BESIDES EVERYBODY WITH BASIC OBSERVATION SKILLS?

Not to belabour the point, but if the Flames feel they are a playoff team with the roster they currently have, they cannot be thinking they are going to be a high seed, if they are being intellectually honest. Is it shocking that a bubble team would find itself two points out of a playoff spot in November? No, it isn't. The question then becomes why is the team acting like it is?

If Ken King and Jay Feaster sold ownership on this team being a good one, then that is on King and Feaster, not on the players. The players are who we think they are. They have been for at least two seasons. If management still has unrealistic expectations for them, or if they kept their jobs in the offseason by selling those expectations, that speaks to the talent and ability of the management, if you ask us.

#2 The organization is losing patience

Really? Ken King has had his job for a decade. Besides that, if the team is still operating in 'win-now' mode, why did they fire Darryl? At least Darryl could swing a trade, something Fatster is apparently having a little trouble with at the moment.

Honestly, the team fired Darryl because he went crazy. Fine, but he went crazy because he had been in 'win now' mode for a decade. You would think that by firing him, the team was saying "we are getting out of win-now mode". Which would have been smart. Instead, they are still insisting on running the club in 'win-now' mode, except now they have a less capable management team in place, which suggests they didn't really learn anything. Actually, it suggests that Ken King fired Darryl as an exercise in public relations, and nothing more.

#3 "We are not a team that scores on the rush...we need to has been shown statistically this season."

Two parter. First, 'we are not a team that scores on the rush, we need to cycle the puck' is a bit much coming from a man who just gave Alex Tanguay a contract that lasts until the 2016 season.

Besides that, does that statement make sense to anybody? How do you get a rush in hockey? You force a turnover. Is Fatster saying this club doesn't have the ability to create turnovers? Olli Jokinen is in the top 10 in the league in take-aways this season.

This sounds like Fatster echoing the frustrations of a coach who can't get his team to buy in.

The second part is 'it has been shown statistically this season'. Obviously that is bullshit. Unless Fatster really is saying they have looked at a sample size of what would have been 12 games or less and come away with the clubs formula for winning. In which case he should be fired.

#4 The team can't trade turnovers

Well, obviously, right? Is there a team out there who thinks they can win by trading turnovers? Teams want to generate more turnovers than they give the puck away.

More charts:
Seems to show that the teams that are scoring the most in this league don't do it by trading turnovers, they do it by generating turnovers.

Which sucks for the Flames, because we employ the Bakery Brothers (Jay Bouwmeester and Chris Butler) on our blueline. 

Our two cents: The outbursts from Fatster over the weekend may be from the frustration the front office has with it's team, and more specifically, of this team not playing up to the expectations of the front office. The question is then who is right? Does the front office have crazy expectations, or are the players indeed a bunch of bums?

Life being what it is, we are inclined to think it is a little bit of both. However, Fatster made the playoff guarantee, and he said the team would be challenging for the division title, and he said the team would make the playoffs as a high seed. So if are going to be fair, we have to say that it certainly looks like the front office of the club misread the talent level of it's roster. Which should bring into question the abilities of the men who make up the front office, Ken King and Jay Feaster.

But of course, those men provide access, so it is much easier to write about how the players are bums, whine about how Bourque isn't a 40 goal scorer, etc.

The team is who we thought it was. If Ken King and Fatster are surprised by that, that speaks to their abilities to forecast, evaluate and manage. Not the players.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Misery Of The Faithless

Quoteth Dome Beers:

"Flames are in a tough spot, gang.

They get worked by the Canucks on their home ice, so are expected to put in a good effort. Detroit has lost 5 games in a row.

If the Flames win the attitude is 'well, they bloody well should have after their performance in their last game' but
 us non-believers can shrug and say that the Flames caught Detroit while they playing badly.

Almost no win, really.

And because the Flames are trying to turn us all into schizophrenics, they of course did win in Detroit.

We were watching the game, and we remarked to the ether that we had not seen a Detroit team look this bad in a long time. But maybe that is just a product of our perspective: Perhaps the Flames made Detroit look that bad.

It's a matter of faith. Do you still believe in this team, or have you lost the faith? If you still believe, then last nights victory over the Detroit Red Wings is reason for optimism, but if you don't believe, then last nights victory over a club that had lost it's five previous games it had played doesn't really tell you anything at all: We know the Flames can beat bad teams. The Flames, in fact, are probably the best of the bad teams. The question is are they more than that, and do they have a chance?

The title is a tell for our position on the team: A win over Detroit should be a win over Detroit, yet we are mired in the misery of the faithless: we don't buy in.

(Think about what miserable fucks that makes us: A win over the Red Wings isn't even good enough anymore!)

Instead of going over why, which is pretty well documented, let's talk about what it will take to make us believers.

We once heard some insane stat that most teams in the top 8 come American Thanksgiving tend to stay there. American Thanksgiving is what, November 24th.

From now till then, the Flames play the Sabres, Avalanche (twice), Wild, Hawks (twice), Sens, Jackets, and the Red Wings. If the Flames go 6-3 on this portion of the schedule...we might just start heading down the road to Damascus again.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Bloomberg Businessweek FTW

Flames are in a tough spot, gang.

They get worked by the Canucks on their home ice, so are expected to put in a good effort. Detroit has lost 5 games in a row.

If the Flames win the attitude is 'well, they bloody well should have after their performance in their last game' but us non-believers can shrug and say that the Flames caught Detroit while they playing badly.

Almost no win, really.

Anyways, that little situation aside, we had a quick little chart we found in 'Bloomberg Businessweek' to show ya'll.

You know how it is our contention that a large factor in the teams suck is the bad management? Wanna see some ammunition?

Well, click that 'Bloomberg Businessweek' link for the full chart. It's their attempt at an efficiency measure as it pertains to performance measured against spending. We direct you to the link first before charting because their chart includes every major sports team in North America (which is interesting to take a look at) and our chart will be hockey team related.

Anyways, here is the methodology:

"A general manager’s job is to turn payroll dollars into wins. We’ve run the numbers on the last five NHL, MLB, NBA, and NFL seasons to see who’s done it best—by winning often, spending little, or (sometimes) both.

Our method: By culling player payroll data from reported sources and pairing them with wins and losses over the last five completed seasons, we calculated an average cost per win in each league. Based on that number, we measured (by standard deviation) how far each team varied above or below the league norm. The result is a cross-sport rating of how every U.S. franchise compares to its peers in squeezing wins from money. We call it the Efficiency Index."

We call it 'ammunition'. Anyways:

(It is hard to read, just give it a click.)

And just for shits and kicks, averages!

Average Cost Per Win: $1.185.333.33
Average Wins Per Season: 41
Average Number Of Playoff Performances: 2.67, which we round down to 2 to be kind to the home team.

Obviously this chart requires some context; nobody who actually loves what is good about sports would try to argue that Wang is a good owner (Islanders). But from a business perspective, it's arguable he might be at least operating in a prudent fashion: he doesn't win a lot, but at the same time he doesn't spend a lot of money (relatively speaking).

This chart penalizes precisely the opposite behaviour: paying a lot of money for a team that isn't very good. Which is why you will find, maybe predictably, the teams that occupy the bottom of this list are the Oilers, the Flyers, the Rangers, the Maple Leafs, and the Flames. Teams that spend a lot of money, almost as much as the cap allowed in the preceding five years, and hovered around the bottom of the playoff spots, or in the Oilers and the Maple Leafs case, didn't even make the dance at all. And while we should also point out that indeed the Flyers made it to the Finals in the last five years, they have perennially been seen as a Cup contending team since the lockout ended, and the results have rarely been commensurate with the expectations.

We will end on this point: In a way, this chart shows us the power of expectations can have on how clubs operate. You will no doubt notice that, very generally speaking, the teams that rank high on this list have fanbases who don't expect to win, demand to win, as intensely as the teams on the bottom of this list. We could infer that the fervour for victory compels teams to spend money they otherwise wouldn't in an attempt to keep up with the arms race, and in an attempt to try and convince the teams customers that the team is indeed trying to compete and win.

If that is the case, if ownership in certain markets feel compelled to make the resources available to their teams managers because of market pressures, then it would seem to be in their best interest to try and identify and then acquire the managers who are best able to efficiently allocate resources. San Jose would be an example of this type of approach to running a club.

 If this chart has any value, it is in the fact that it shows the person who is managing the Calgary Flames, Ken King, does not seem to be a great allocator of the above average amount of resources he is allowed to allocate by the team owners. It would seem obvious to us that the team should try and upgrade in that department. Targeting executives from the Predators, the Sharks, the Red Wings, and the Ducks would seem to be a prudent course of action with this club moving forward into an offseason where it has the potential to remake and rebuild itself fairly quickly.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Not A Lengthy Polemic

Because why use 1500 words when you don't have to?

This is our view, in a nutshell.

First, you need to decide if that game last night was an accurate reflection of the team. Is this team really 5 goals (or 4 goals for the keeners) worse than the Vancouver Canucks?

If it is, then there is no point in continuing the exercise. The team needs to be deconstructed, blown up, the parts sold for scraps and draft picks, and we need to start again.

If we don't believe the team to be 5 goals, or 4 goals, worse than the Canucks, we need to ask ourselves how is it they (the Flames) lost by that margin.

Personally, we think the team is badly constructed, but we also don't think that the team is 5 goals worse than the Canucks. So we are going to take a stab at answering how it is they lost by that margin.

Now obviously we are not talking stats here. If you were constructing the argument that the team is shit and needs to be blown up, that's what you would use stats for. But what are stats going to tell us about why the team didn't show up against the team that represented the Western Conference in the Stanley Cup Finals? Stats will tell us the what: Jarome Iginla managed two shots on goal in a big game at home against a division rival. They won't tell us why.

See what we did there? We are not blaming the performance on coaching utilization, on match-ups, on systems of play. We are beyond that. They are factors for sure, but they are factors only to a point. We are blaming the lack of performance of the players on the players.

Ultimately, that is what we are left with. Again, the last game of a home stand, against a division rival, against a team the fanbase hates, against a team that represented the West in the Finals (or if you don't speak sports, that is to say a team you are to use as a measuring stick), and the Flames came out and let the Canucks ravish them.

There was no fight, no spark, no push-back, no nothing. We hate to say it, but it looked like the team came out, saw Vancouver was very good, and then the team, the Flames, decided they didn't want to get embarrassed by playing hard against them only to lose. So they decided to half ass the effort so they could look in the mirror at the end of the day and say "We lost to the Canucks but we weren't really trying so it doesn't mean we aren't any good."

They shut it down. At least, that's how we view it, you may disagree. You may be right to disagree; the Canucks may be worlds better. But in salary capped NHL, teams are rarely magnitudes better than the rest of the league. Vancouver almost lost in the playoffs to a Chicago team that had two lines and three defencemen last year. In other words, Vancouver almost lost to a flawed team, which indicates to us that they are not immortal herculean hockey players who are head and shoulders better than everyone else.

The Flames quit. We think they quit to preserve their pride, in some perverse way. But regardless of why, what does that tell us? More importantly, what does that tell us about the leadership of this team?

Quite honestly, does Jarome Iginla care about winning? If he doesn't, why is he on this team?

This may sound insane, Jarome is a Hall-Of-Famer, of course he cares. Meh, we don't know...

Jettisoned from the locker room in recent years: Dion Phaneuf, Robyn Regehr, Daymond Langkow. Guys who were known to be leaders, and guys who it has been speculated Jarome developed rifts with. And why would rifts develop between players who want to win, like Regehr, and Jarome? Could it be the rifts developed over commitment to winning? Could it be these rifts developed because Jarome is a bad captain?

The Calgary Flames have an identity, despite what you hear in the sports media. Their identity is the Country Club. Jarome is a great player; it would be a shame if he let complacency tarnish his legacy as he winds down his career.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.

ps: If you want to argue that Jarome shouldn't be held accountable for managements inability to put talent around him we will listen to that to a point; However, Jarome Iginla is involved in player personnel decisions. Which makes Jarome, if we wanted to be very severe in our judgements, culpable in the poor roster decisions as well.

pps: On Talent:

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Monday, October 31, 2011

Hazing Allegations Rock The Flames


Calgary ( - The parents of a 27-year-old hockey player at the centre of a hazing scandal say the man was forced to skate hard, fore-check, back-check, and be responsible with the puck.

On Tuesday, the National Hockey League was not considering suspending coaches on the Calgary Flames for hazing incidents involving Matt Stajan.

The father of the grown man says his son was amongst several players forced to run defensive drills at a brisk pace. These drills also reportedly included contact.

Reportedly, several drills involving vision and puck possession were also conducted. Whenever Matt Stajan failed to run the drill to satisfaction, he was allegedly forced to run the drill again.

"They had what they are calling a 'practice," The elder Stajan said. "They were encouraged to move their feet and be physical, and the vets and coaches would judge them on that."

Relating another incident, Stajan's father said his son was asked to do at least three laps around the rink at high speed while carrying a puck on his stick. His son was judged on the effort he put into running the drills at the 'practice', he said.

This story was later confirmed by Jay Bouwmeester.

"Well, yeah, I mean, I just remember it being so hard when I had to go through that," quietly mumbled a genuflecting Bouwmeester. "I just don't think people understand, you know? What being asked to not turn the puck over will do to your psyche. They don't understand."

Matt Stajan's father shared similar sentiments.

"It's so wrong," Stajan's father said, adding he hopes speaking out on the matter might help prevent future hazing incidents. "I didn't think this type of juvenile barbarism was around anymore. I just can't believe that it (practice) still happens in this day and age."

Stajan told his dad that Coach Sutter was at the rink during the incident.

"I couldn't believe it," Stajan's father said. "He's a person in authority."

"It's bad enough he sends Rich Hesketh out to abuse little Matty during the offseason; checking up on him, weighing him. Now he is terrorizing him at the rink?"

After Stajan complained about the incident he was forced to apologize to his team for coming forward, Stajan's father said.

"He felt his career was in jeopardy." he said. "They have put him in the press box because of this."

Stajan has been in the press box following the incident and may be hoping to be moved to another team.

"That's more than the punishment for some of the other players who had to endure practice," Stajan's father said. "The difference is my boy complained."

When reached for comment, Matt Stajan did not seem to be backing off his allegations.

"It was gross. They made me skate up the ice real fast, and then back down the other way. For almost, like, 15 minutes. I was sweating. Do you know what that is like? To sweat? It's disgusting. It was terrible."

Flames brass have yet to respond to the allegations, although one member of the team did offer comment.

"Matt Stajan sucks." offered Harvey The Hound.

Furthermore, I think Peter Loubardias Ken King should be fired.