Mired in a 9 game losing streak has the Flames faithful up in arms about making a move or shaking things up to bust out of this slump. I even suggested a ‘slump buster’ for Iginla, as he spent 9 games doing absolutely jack-S. Excuse my harsh letters.
The deal finally came down at 10am on the morning of Jan 31st, 2010. The reason for listing the date is that I believe this could be a day that goes down in the annals of Flames history. This team might have just traded away its best defenseman for a bag of pucks, a water bottle, and a few scratch lottery tickets.
That was my initial thought. Since looking at it further, and really understanding all the facts, I think the Flames win the deal, if not with the players, than addition by subtraction.
Let’s dive into this deal headfirst:
Dion Phaneuf –
I would like to break down this trade a little. Let’s start with just removing Sjostrom for Mayers. In this writer’s opinion, both suck, and are meaningless to the trade. Secondly, Keith Aulie was a 4th rounder, and has been sub-par in his first year of AHL Action in Abbotsford. His value is low right now, so lets just set him aside for the time being. I am trying to focus on the NOW of the deal, and not so much the future…
With those adjustments made, the deal was Dion Phaneuf and his $6.5M per year contract, locker room cancer, and Neanderthal-like forehead for Hagman, Stajan, and White.
Fans in Toronto are suggesting that White is the most under-rated D-man in the league…and if he isn’t, his moustache surely is. +1 on the Flames picking up that facial hair.
Now let’s look at this deal from a different perspective: The loss of Dion Phaneuf to the Flames.
The Flames lose a guy that can soak up 25 minutes a game, and a guy that can shoot, hit, and contribute…although the last 2 seasons, he has just not lived up to the hype. Dion has turned into a little bit of a cancer as of late. It has been echoed many times that he was a huge asshole, and the rest of the team hated him. Hell, I have also heard from reliable sources that Dion burned his own bridge by messing around with another player’s woman. This obviously would make for some pretty bad working conditions.
So when you take into account the fact that the Flames pick up some offensive punch, PLUS some addition by subtraction in the locker room, you have to like it as a Flames fan.
In summary, I think Dion is a hell of a player. There is a good chance he will win a Norris in Toronto. I think there is also a smaller chance that he could end up crumbling under the pressure of the fishbowl that is the Center of the Universe. In either case, the sum of the parts that comes to Calgary is very nice, and could count as a ‘win’ in the long run. Although, it could be a loss too.
In Calgary, the most common thing heard was: We will miss The Douche less than we will miss his girlfriend.
After much thought, Leeman For Gilmour this is not.
Going forward, this opens up some doors for the Flames, as well. They have been given a little cap relief, they have also added some parts that could potentially be added in for another bigger deal. They have 2 extra bodies at forward, so either some roster movement will have to take place (Lundmark/Backlund sent down), or another trade will be made.
Interesting times in Calgary….
Update: 9:59pm MST
I originally wrote this article throughout the day on Sunday, and came back to edit it, clean it up, and generally have it make more sense, only to find that the Mad Scientist Darryl Sutter is back at it, sending Ollie Jokinen and Brandon Prust to the New York Rangers for two guys that just haven’t fit in there at all, Ales Kotilik and Chris Higgins. Wow, the Makeover continues.
Here is how I have broken down the Flames moves as of today:
OUT —–? IN
Phaneuf ? White
Prust ? Mayers
Sjostrom ? Hagman, Kotilik, and Higgins.
So, the way I look at it, we got the best deal ever for Sjostrom!
Hell Yeah! It’s the steal of the century!!!!
In all honestly, this locker room needed a massive shake up, and lord did they ever get it. It will be interesting to see what happens tomorrow night when the new look Flames hit the ice!
*GULP* Go Flames!
- The Flames’ Momentum Swings Both Ways