On the telephone from Montreal late Thursday afternoon, when called to discuss the Gelnias (SIC) hire, Hartley might’ve unwittingly given a tipoff as to how this all might play out.
“For me,’’ he declared, “looking at Jarome, Giordano, Tanguay, Glencross, Cammalleri, Kiprusoff . . . that’s going to be the core of our team.’’
Now maybe it was nothing more than an honest omission, or the overactive imagination of a scurrilous scribbler, but one prominent name was missing from Hartley’s list. There was no mention of No. 4. Of Jay Bouwmeester.Which would be news, I think.
I mean, we all hate the big pussy, but he is also one of the better defensive players on the team. That probably speaks to the level of talent on the teams blueline, but it is what it is.
Who is going to play those minutes? Right? And everything you hear about the cap is that it is going to be SEVENTY MILLION MOTHERFUCKING DOLLARS G!
Like...this team is prepared to go with the dead weight of Stajan and Babchuk, but can't afford to carry Bouwmeester on its books?
I don't get that. Like I said, the Flames have shit for defence. They, like every other team in the NHL, could certainly use a player who has shown he is capable of logging minutes against real NHLers. And Bouwmeester's presence isn't blocking the development of anybody...
Do you think he asked to be traded? Because I think Jay Bouwmeester has asked to be traded.
The problem with Jay Bouwmeester...well, there are many problems with Jay Bouwmeester, but most of them have to do with perceptual things. Like, because he doesn't hit, or score, or give interviews, people think he doesn't give a shit. He certainly projects an 'I don't give a shit' aka 'Meh' vibe. But that isn't the hockey problem with Bouwmeester. The hockey problem with Bouwmeester is that he eats up a lot of cap-space.
Thing is, the Flames have plenty of cap-space. They are sitting at around 20 million dollars in cap-space according to Cap Geek. You know what they don't have? Players who can fucking defend properly. They were using But7er on the top pairing last year, for Whalen's sake. It's amazing Bouwmeester wasn't a minus 82, if you think about it like that.
So, I mean, I don't get why they would trade the guy by choice. If they have an offer on the table that is good, like a swap of NHL players, Bouwmeester for a forward, for instance, then yeah, I can see that. But to trade Bouwmeester for cap space for a chance to try and land some free agents who might consider coming here...doesn't make a lot of sense to me.
Unless, of course, he asked for a trade.
Edmonton? I'm praying to Whalen that he asked to be traded to Edmonton.
I saw on Flamesnation that there is noise the team has also put Backlund on the trading block.
To me, this is the same shit as the Bouwmeester thang. Why would the Flames trade a guy when he is at his lowest point in terms of value, when they have nobody in their system who they can plug into his spot?
Now I don't think Backlund has asked to be traded, (although who knows) which is kinda even more...the word Wilson used was 'disconcerting', and exactly, right?
Maybe the team does intend to trade players who have shown they can play minutes in the NHL for...dreams? I guess?
Could you imagine? And yet, I think we all could. Like, asking people to believe the team is being run poorly isn't that much of a stretch.
In a way, I guess I am raising the possibilty that Jay Bouwmeester has asked for a trade as a way to cope. Because, honestly, the thought that the people steering The Good Ship Flames would think they could trade Jay Bouwmeester without having any assurances they could then fill that newly created hole is terrifying.
Now that I think about it, that would be my objection. Not that they are trading Bouwmeester, but that they are trading Bouwmeester at the draft, and not after July 1, when the team would be operating in a safer environment, I think, to make that trade.
Furthermore, I think