The Calgary Flames are on the cusp of playoff contention, but their fate remains uncertain. With the regular season winding down, the Flames need to win every game and get some help from other teams to secure a playoff spot. In this edition of the FlamesNation Mailbag, we’ll take a look at the team’s transition data, potential lineup changes, and coaching options. Additionally, we’ll examine some possible prospects for the Flames to consider.
Transition Data and Scoring Chances
The Flames have been struggling to convert their chances into goals this season. While they’ve created more rush attempts than last season, they’ve created about 50 fewer scoring chances. Their biggest challenge has been collecting rebounds and translating initial chances into second and third opportunities. However, with the right adjustments, the Flames can still make a strong push for the playoffs.
Although the Flames are still mathematically alive in the playoff chase, don’t expect any lineup changes until they’re eliminated from contention. However, we may see Matt Coronato and Jakob Pelletier enter the lineup in the final games of the season.
With Brad Treliving’s contract expiring and Darryl Sutter’s contract extending for two more seasons, there’s some uncertainty surrounding the Flames’ coaching staff. Given the disappointing season, it’s possible that neither Treliving nor Sutter will return next season. Ryan Huska and Mitch Love are strong internal candidates if the Flames need to find a new head coach. Huska has had success in junior and minor pro leagues, and his work with the blueliners and penalty kill has been impressive. Love has coached the AHL’s top team in the past two seasons and is known for his blunt, directive coaching style. Both coaches are worth considering for any future vacancies.
Looking ahead to next season, the Flames may want to consider prospects who can provide a boost. Seattle Thunderbirds winger Lucas Ciona, Calgary Wranglers’ defender Ilya Solovyov, and University of Connecticut freshman Arsenii Sergeev are worth watching. Ciona is a captain who combines size, smarts, and a willingness to score. Solovyov has the size and consistency to be a top defender, while Sergeev had an excellent season in college.
the Flames need to finish strong and get some help from other teams to secure a playoff spot. If they miss the playoffs, changes may be on the horizon for the coaching staff and roster. With the right adjustments and a few promising prospects, the Flames can bounce back next season.