The Calgary Flames got off to a miserable start last season, recording nine regulation wins in their first 50 games, but did manage to finish strong over the final 32 games. Jamon Brown Jersey . Off-Season Game Plan looks at a Flames team that has new management and will be looking to build on the strong finish and hope not to fall back to where they started the 2013-2014 season. Flames president of hockey operations Brian Burke was positive about what the Flames accomplished late in the season. "I think there were a lot of positive developments in this season that Im proud of," Burke said at seasons end. "I think we gave (the fans) a product they enjoyed watching." The first move of the Flames offseason was to hire a new general manager and that resulted in Burke picking Brad Treliving, who had been the Assistant GM for the Phoenix Coyotes. At his introductory press conference, Treliving sure sounded like would be in alignment with the plans of the president. "I think the style of play, people talk about big and whatever word you want to use, I think you need to have heavy teams now," Treliving said. "I think you have to play a heavy game." Its challenging enough for rebuilding teams to acquire good hockey players, let alone doing so with size as a pre-requisite. Making matters even more fun is that the Flames top prospect is a tiny scoring forward, Hobey Baker winner John Gaudreau, so there will be some challenges if the Flames are intending to get bigger and better immediately. Nevertheless, those are some of the challenges that Treliving faces with a team that also has to believe their finish to the 2013-2014 season wasnt fools gold. If it wasnt, then adding the likes of Gaudreau and getting further development from last years sixth overall pick, Sean Monahan, could help advance a team that, if nothing else, put forth a good effort for head coach Bob Hartley. Effort is admirable, character and grit are admirable. But if the Flames are going to climb the ladder in the Western Conference, they are ultimately going to need more talent, no matter the size. The TSN.ca Rating is an efficiency rating based on per-game statistics including goals and assists -- weighted for strength (ie. power play, even, shorthanded) -- Corsi, adjusted for zone starts, quality of competition and quality of teammates, hits, blocked shots, penalty differential and faceoffs. Generally, a replacement-level player is around a 60, a top six forward and top four defenceman will be around 70, stars will be over 80 and MVP candidates could go over 90. Sidney Crosby finished at the top of the 2013-2014 regular season ratings at 87.12. Salary cap information all comes from the indispensable www.capgeek.com. CF% = Corsi percentage (ie. percentage of 5-on-5 shot attempts), via www.extraskater.com. GM/COACH Brad Treliving/Bob Hartley Returning Forwards Player Rating GP G A PTS CF% Cap Hit Mikael Backlund 69.48 76 18 21 39 51.7% $1.5M Curtis Glencross 69.41 38 12 12 24 42.7% $2.55M Jiri Hudler 69.20 75 17 37 54 46.7% $4.0M Matt Stajan 68.36 63 14 19 33 47.6% $3.13M David Jones 65.31 48 9 8 17 45.3% $4.0M Sean Monahan 64.76 75 22 12 34 43.8% $925K Brian McGrattan 54.61 76 4 4 8 38.4% $750K Free Agent Forwards Player Rating GP G A PTS CF% Class 13-14 Cap Hit Mike Cammalleri 72.04 63 26 19 45 50.8% UFA $6.0M Paul Byron 65.08 47 7 14 21 50.4% RFA $644K T.J. Galiardi 61.48 62 4 13 17 49.5% RFA $1.25M Joe Colborne 61.47 80 10 18 28 45.4% RFA $600K Lance Bouma 59.16 78 5 10 15 43.5% RFA $578K Kevin Westgarth 55.99 74 7 12 19 42.9% UFA $725K 25-year-old centre Mikael Backlund could be the top returning forward on the Flames roster and hes coming off a season in which he scored a career-high 39 points. But Backlund also been the Flames best possession forward over the past five seasons and, over the past three seasons, hes been doing it while not getting the easy work, starting shifts in the defensive zone and facing quality opposition. Hes widely underrated because he doesnt have big point totals, but is a quality player at a bargain price. Curtis Glencross had knee and ankle injuries cost him more than half the season, and his possession numbers werent good, but hes been an effective goal-scorer. Even with some injuries, 77 goals over the past four seasons ranks 65th in the league and hes somehow one of the highest-percentage finishers in the game. Jiri Hudler was the Flames leading scorer last season and while hes not a dominant player, hes also put up three 50-point seasons over the past five (including one lockout-shortened campaign), so his skill stands out in this group. Matt Stajan didnt bring the best bang for the buck on his last contract but, given a better opportunity last season, he handled some difficult assignments with a lot of defensive zone starts, earning a new contract. Stajan seems like he can be a good fit as a responsible third-line centre, but there have been times in the past that they havent had enough better options available. Veteran winger David Jones was a risky enough signing last year and, following an injury-marred season, hes managed a dozen goals and 26 points in 81 games over the past two seasons. He can skate, has good size and may fit better in a checking role, even if his salary is a tad high for that expectation. For as impressive as a 22-goal rookie season was for 19-year-old Sean Monahan, he naturally has much room to improve and, to his credit, there was progression in his game as the year went on. For example, prior to Christmas, he was on the ice for 40.7% of 5-on-5 shot attempts and 45.9% after. Thats progress and Monahans emergence is a big part of the Flames future. On the basis of pure hockey skills, there isnt an argument to justify Brian McGrattan holding down a spot in the lineup. He was overmatched, despite favourable usage, but when it comes to evaluating enforcers on the roster, there is a different set of rules, especially on teams that believe in the intangible benefits of having a heavyweight on the roster. Clearly, the Flames are a team that wants a tough guy patrolling their fourth line and McGrattan is one of the best fighters in the league -- hes fought 20 times over the past three seasons and, according to hockeyfights.com voters, hes won 18 and has a couple of split decision draws (one for, one against). Hes not much of a finisher, and doesnt look like hes ever going to approach his rookie season total of 39 points again, but T.J. Galiardi can be an effective checking winger. He was last season, as his minus-13 rating was effectively sabotaged by a low on-ice save percentage. Its been a gradual climb for Paul Byron since getting drafted by Buffalo in the sixth round in 2007, but he may have cracked through last season, using his tremendous speed to generate solid possession numbers; solid enough that, for the first time, he ought to be part of next seasons roster plans. After failing to stick with Boston or Toronto, Joe Colborne finally got a chance to play with the Flames and, while a 24-year-old scoring 28 points in 80 games isnt a resounding success, Colbornes underlying numbers (Corsi % wa 47.1% from January 1 on; 43.1% before) improved as the season progressed, enough that he should get the opportunity to see if he can build upon that foundation in his second NHL season. 24-year-old Lance Bouma has managed 19 points in 121 career games and doesnt have an ideal puck possession track record, but he also played hard minutes last season, with lots of defensive zone starts against quality opposition, so those underlying numbers do need to be considered in context. That doesnt mean that Boumas most definitely an asset, but it may be enough to warrant a depth role. Looking ahead, the Flames need more skill in their forward group. Collegiate scoring sensation Johnny Gaudreau should have an opportunity next season, as may the fourth overall pick in the draft, but if the Flames want more immediate help -- especially if they dont re-sign unrestricted free agent Mike Cammalleri -- then they may need to dip into the free agent pool. Landing a proven scorer like Radim Vrbata or Matt Moulson could at least offset Cammalleris potential departure. Returning Defence Player Rating GP G A PTS CF% Cap Hit Mark Giordano 81.29 64 14 33 47 53.3% $4.02M T.J. Brodie 69.72 81 4 27 31 51.5% $2.125M Dennis Wideman 67.41 46 4 17 21 45.9% $5.25M Kris Russell 67.00 68 7 22 29 43.5% $2.6M Ladislav Smid 58.00 73 2 6 8 41.2% $3.5M Shane OBrien 54.87 45 0 3 3 44.0% $2.0M Free Agent Defence Player Rating GP G A PTS CF% Class 13-14 Cap Hit Chris Butler 61.08 82 2 14 16 42.8% UFA $1.7M If not for a broken ankle suffered in October, Mark Giordano would be front-and-centre in the Norris Trophy discussion. Even after missing 18 games, Giordano justifiably received lots of praise at seasons end, putting up out-of-this-world possession stats, while playing the hardest minutes for a generally poor team. This was the best year of Giordanos career and it would be great for the Flames if this is his new standard level of play going forward, but there is some risk that hes not going to be able to duplicate such an impressive campaign. Sure, its a first-world problem to have to worry about your number one defenceman duplicating his Norris Trophy-calibre season, but it should be taken into consideration. Rising with the tide created by Giordanos season, 23-year-old T.J. Brodie turned in a strong season as Giordanos partner. Brodie has had strong relative possession numbers pretty much since arriving in the league, but he did it last year while playing in a top-pair role, with tough matchups and more defensive zone starts. His ability to move the puck is a major asset on the Flames blueline. Since 2009-2010, Dennis Wideman has the worst plus-minus in the league, but thats not a fair representation of his game. Over that same period, hes been on for 50% of the 5-on-5 shot attempts for while ranking near the bottom in on-ice save percentage. With that in context, Wideman remains a capable puck-moving defenceman who can man the point on the power play. After six seasons of struggling to establish a consistent presence in the NHL, with Columbus and St. Louis, Kris Russell took advantage of an opportunity in Calgary last season, playing 23:08 per game for the Flames (4.33 per game more than his previous career high). Trouble is, he was likely asked to do too much in that role, as his possession stats steadily declined as the season went along. In a secondary role, though, Russells skating should make him an asset. There were 10 defencemen that had more combined hits and blocked shots than Ladislav Smids 361 but, as one might suspect, that indicates that the Flames didnt have the puck much with Smid on the ice. To that end, the Flames probably need to limit Smids use to third pair and penalty killing minutes to make the most of his skills. Shane OBrien was demoted to the AHL part way through the year after playing sparingly. Hes a year removed from a relatively strong possession season, so the 30-year-old doesnt have to be done altogether, but might need a change in order to land an NHL gig for the final year of his current contract. The good news for the Flames is that they appear to have the core of their defence set. If Giordano, Brodie, Wideman, Russell and Smid make up the top five, then the rest may involve minor adjustments. At the same time, it would come as no surprise if Burke, er Treliving, had interest in a bruising veteran (Team USA) defencemen like Brooks Orpik. Returning Goaltenders Player Rating GP W L OTL GAA SV% Cap Hit Karri Ramo 65.42 40 17 15 4 2.65 .911 $2.75M Free Agent Goaltender Player Rating GP W L OTL GAA SV% Class 13-14 Cap Hit Joey MacDonald 56.31 11 5 4 1 2.91 .890 UFA $925K There was definitely a leap of faith taken last year in making 27-year-old Karri Ramo the Flames No. 1 option in goal after four years in the KHL. The early returns werent good, as Ramo opened with an .890 save percentage through the end of November, but he was pretty good from December on, posting a .918 save percentage in his 30 games played from December on. Thats hardly enough of a sample to decide that Ramo is all set as a No. 1 goaltender in the NHL, but its encouraging. How the Flames address the backup goaltending situation could shine a light on the teams expectations for next season. If they decide to go with prospect Joni Ortio, that could be an indication that theyre willing to take some of the lumps that tend to come with unproven goaltenders. If they bring in a veteran to compete with Ramo, though, maybe there would be reason to have higher hopes. They could sign a free agent like Thomas Greiss or Brian Elliott, or maybe theyre a viable trade partner for Maple Leafs goaltender James Reimer. Top Prospects Player Pos. Team/League Stats John Gaudreau LW Boston College (HE) 36-44-80, +42, 40 GP Sven Baertschi LW Abbotsford (AHL) 13-16-29, +1, 41 GP Emile Poirier LW Gatineau (QMJHL) 43-44-87, +30, 63 GP Markus Granlund LW Abbotsford (AHL) 25-21-46, +10, 52 GP Jon Gillies G Providence (HE) 2.16 GAA, .931 SV%, 34 GP Morgan Klimchuk LW Regina (WHL) 30-44-74, +26, 57 GP Joni Ortio G Abbotsford (AHL) 2.33 GAA, .926 SV%, 37 GP Max Reinhart C Abbotsford (AHL) 21-43-63, +6, 66 GP Bill Arnold C Boston College (HE) 14-39-53, +43, 40 GP Corban Knight C Abbotsford (AHL) 18-26-44, +11, 70 GP Mark Jankowski C Providence (HE) 13-12-25, +15, 39 GP John Gaudreau won the Hobey Baker Award as the best player in U.S. College hockey after scoring two points per game (36 G, 44 A, 40 GP) for Boston College. Gaudreau is tiny, listed at 5-foot-7 so, like any undersized player, there are questions about whether he can handle the grind of the NHL. The way to find out is to let Gaudreau play. He scored a goal in his NHL debut, against Vancouver, and has been named to the U.S. team for the World Championships, so its not like hell be completely shell-shocked when he arrives in training camp next season with expectations of filling a role on a scoring line. The 13th overall pick in 2011, Sven Baertschi has picked up 24 points in 51 NHL games to this point, but he doesnt seem to be a favourite of the new regime. If Baertshi isnt going to get an opportunity to be part of the solution for the Flames, hes still young enough, with offensive potential, to be a valuable trade chip. Taken with the 22nd pick last summer, Emile Poirier continued to improve in the QMJHL last season, then added five points in five (regular season plus playoff) AHL games with Abbotsford. Hes only 19, so theres no rush, but Poirier could challenge for a position soon. Not nearly as heralded as brother Mikael, who plays for the Minnesota Wild, Markus Granlund had a smooth transition to the North American pro game, showing more goal-scoring prowess than might have been anticipated from his time in Finland. The 2011 second-round pick should compete for a spot next year. A premier goaltending prospect, Jon Gillies is 6-foot-5 and has a .931 save percentage in 69 collegiate games. The 2012 third-round pick is only 20-years-old, so it makes sense for him to return to school for his junior year. Morgan Klimchuk is a hard-working winger who plays bigger than his size and brings some skill too, scoring 150 points in 129 WHL games over the past couple seasons. The 28th pick in last summers draft could still use time to get stronger before hes considered for an NHL job. Drafted in the sixth round in 2009, Joni Ortio had a nice first season in North America, with a .926 save percentage in the AHL. He wasnt ready for his NHL stint (.891 SV% in 9 GP), but that was a situation forced out of need rather than part of the development plan. Could probably use another year of seasoning before looking at an NHL gig. Max Reinhart took a nice step forward in his second pro season, scoring nearly a point per game in the AHL and hes going to be in contention for a roster spot, but its starting to get crowded in terms of prospects looking for spots on the low end of the depth chart. Sturdy forward Bill Arnold made his NHL debut late in the season and was a productive player alongside Gaudreau at Boston College. At the next level, though, Arnold isnt likely to be a scorer, so hell have to do battle with the other young forwards looking for depth roles in Calgary. Drafted by the Florida Panthers, 23-year-old Corban Knight signed with the Flames as a free agent last summer and had a solid enough first pro campaign, which included a seven-game audition in the NHL. Lanky pivot Mark Jankowski was a controversial first-round pick (21st overall) in 2012 and his first two collegiate seasons havent inspired confidence that hell live up to that draft position, but he still has a ways to go if hes going to make a difference as a pro. The Flames system has been stocked up recently, with wingers Ben Hanowski and Kenny Agostino coming as part of the Jarome Iginla trade and they have defencemen Tyler Wotherspoon and Patrick Sieloff (limited to two games by a hip injury and staph infection last season) in the pipeline as well. Flames advanced stats and player usage chart from Extra Skater DRAFT 4th - Sam Bennett, Leon Draisaitl, Michael Dal Colle FREE AGENCY According to www.capgeek.com, the Flames have approximately $39.1M committed to the 2013-2014 salary cap for 14 players. Check out my possible Flames lineup for next season on Cap Geek here. Needs: Two top six forwards, veteran checking forward, top four defenceman, goaltender. What I said the Flames needed last year: Two top six forwards, one top four defenceman, another defenceman, starting goaltender. They added: Sean Monahan, Joe Colborne, T.J. Galiardi, David Jones, Kris Russell, Shane OBrien, Karri Ramo, Reto Berra. TRADE MARKET Jiri Hudler, David Jones, Sven Baertschi. Scott Cullen can be reached at Scott.Cullen@bellmedia.ca and followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/tsnscottcullen. For more, check out TSN Fantasy on Facebook. John Johnson Jersey . The closer wasnt available. The road trip, a disaster to that point. Rob Havenstein Jersey . Yet heading to New York, the Habs remain positive as it all comes down to the one main ingredient that the organization has built its team on - character. http://www.laramsfansshop.com/c-15-rams-sean-mannion-jersey.aspx .35 million, avoiding arbitration. Davis led the majors last season with 53 home runs and 138 RBIs, both career highs. He earned $3.Its all-out war at Mercedes declared Mondays papers following Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosbergs race-ending collision at the Spanish GP. The Silver Arrows team-mates crashed on the run to turn four on the opening lap, leaving both cars damaged in the gravel.Lewis Hamilton was left seething with arch-enemy Nico Rosberg after crashing out of the Spanish GP, wrote Ben Hunt in The Sun. The warring team-mates, who sensationally clashed at Spa in 2014, will now be hauled in front of their Mercedes bosses and warned about their future conduct.Tensions between the pair have simmered beneath the surface since that infamous incident in Belgium and Hunt is unsure if Mercedes can continue to trust their two drivers.Hamilton and Rosbergs clash lit the touchpaper and this inter-team row sets up the Monaco GP perfectly after Hamiltons meltdown there last season, he wrote.It also raises serious questions about whether Merc chiefs can trust them to race fairly in the future. Anthony Davidson looks at the collision between Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg that wiped both Mercedes drivers out of the Spanish Grand Prix on lap one In The Times, Kevin Eason declared that Hamiltons relationship with Rosberg was at new low following their latest clash.The public faces were straight, but the inner turmoil was all too evident to those who watched Hamilton and Rosberg explain the circumstances of the incendiary accident that blew the Spanish GP wide open and detonated what was left of the pairs shattered relationship as Mercedes team-mates, he wrote.Eason described Hamiltons move as desperate and suggested there could be more clashes to come.According to some astute observers, both drivers have acquired a new personality trait: in Rosberg, there is a streak of aggression not seen before and which may have emerged in spades here yesterday; the word applied to Hamilton was bleaker - desperation, he added. Lewis Hamilton says he wont get involved in the blame game over who was responsible for his crash with team-mate Nico Rosberg in Spain The Daily Telegraph led their sports section with a picture of Hamilton stricken in the gravel under the headline Hamiltons stupid move. Cory Littleton Jersey. The stewards elected to punish neither driver, deeming it a racing incident. Tellingly, that was a verdict both Hamilton and Rosberg declined to endorse, wrote Daniel Johnson.The debate will rage just as fiercely as the pair fought over an ever-diminishing piece of track to the point of calamity.It began as soon as a furious Hamilton threw the steering wheel out of his car, mangled and beached in the gravel not far from Rosbergs and will go on and on as Mercedes face the tall order of keeping their two drivers from colliding again. However, Johnson believes the situation will be handled differently to the 2014 clash at Spa.Although it was more visually spectacular, the consequences of this crash for their feud are perhaps not as extensive as when they collided in the Belgian GP two years ago, he wrote.Then, Rosberg was forced to apologise and publicly humiliated. This time, the team will try to be more relaxed. What will define this season, however, is how both drivers respond.With both Mercedes eliminated, the F1 fans were treated to an exhilarating fight during the remainder of the race between the two Ferraris and two Red Bulls for victory in Spain.People here had seen enough Mercedes dominance to last them a lifetime and a change of pattern was welcome, wrote Jonathan McEvoy in the Daily Mail.In The Sun Hunt added: This race was a thriller, just what the sport needed. The Mercedes clash somewhat overshadowed a maiden win for 18-year-old Max Verstappen, with only The Guardian leading on the Dutchmans victory.Under the headline of Verstappens fairytale victory shakes up F1 Paul Weaver wrote the delivery of the prodigy Max Verstappen, who became the youngest winner of a Formula 1 race, brought and iridescence to a sport that for too long has laboured in the single colour of the silver of Mercedes.Everyone apart from the stricken people at Mercedes appeared to be joyous. Many sagacious voices said he was too young but there can be no doubts now.The Suns Hunt declared Verstappen F1s newest superstar, while McEvoy described the Dutchmans drive as sure-footed precocity. Also See: Spanish GP: Verstappen victorious WATCH: Lewis-Nico crash analysed Brundle: Max F1s new start Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Jerseys From China Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys ' ' '