The Calgary Flames lost 4-1 to the Blue Jackets last night in Columbus. There’s a chance you didn’t notice, what with all the attention on Anders Nilsson’s first start for the Islanders in Pittsburgh.
Brent Sutter noticed though. The Calgary coach had an interesting take on the Flames falling to the worst team in the NHL.
“It’s like a bad disease that you have to try to fight off and get through and get a cure and get going,” Sutter told reporters. “The individual has to take responsibility and say, ‘This isn’t good enough. It’s not acceptable.’ Yet, the only measure you have is through play.”
Poor Columbus. Win a game and the other team’s coach plays the “we’ve got a disease” card.
Sadly, it appears the Flames are losing their battle with Stajanitis or Stempniak Syndrome or whatever malady they’ve got. They’re 8-10-1 – six points out of a playoff spot – with road games in Detroit, St. Louis and Minnesota up next.
Calgary’s biggest concern is goal-scoring. Alex Tanguay leads the team with 14 points in 19 games, which is about all you need to know. Across the NHL, there are 68 players with more than 14 points. Only three teams – Minnesota, Anaheim and the NY Islanders – have fewer goals per game than the Flames (2.21).
The Calgary Flames have released Ryan Wilson from his professional tryout.
The 28-year-old was trying to make a comeback after missing 79 games with a shoulder injury last season.
Even with T.J. Brodie sidelined because of a broken hand, Wilson still faced long odds to make the final roster.
The veteran will be hard-pressed to find NHL work with another team.
He hasn’t suited up in more than 12 regular season games since 2011-12.
The Stockton Heat, Calgary’s AHL affiliate, also made some news on Sunday.
The club announced that they’ve signed Colton Orr to an AHL contract.
The 33-year-old tough guy suited up in just one game for the Toronto Maple Leafs last season. He has 12 seasons of NHL experience under his belt.
The Arizona Coyotes have returned Dylan Strome to the Erie Otters of the OHL.
Strome, 18, was the third overall pick in the 2015 NHL draft.
The 6’3, 185 pounder was hoping to stick with the Coyotes this season, but the team decided to take the conservative approach with their top prospect.
Strome will look to build off an incredible junior season that saw him score 45 goals and 129 points in 68 games.
Strome seems to be taking the demotion in stride.
The team also announced that they’ve assigned goaltender Louis Domingue and forward Matthias Plachta to their AHL affiliate in Springfield.
Domingue, 23, had a 1-2-1 record with a 2.73 goals-against-average and a .911 save percentage in seven games last season.
Plachta, a free agent signing, will begin his first pro season in North America. The 24-year-old had 14 goals and 35 points in the German League last season.