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01-19-2010, 02:53 PM
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Originally Posted by mco543 View Post
I think the main thing that would've prevented Calgary from being a powerhouse would be Vernon. Wasnt he atleast partially responsible for some of Calgary's more disappointing play-off exits during that time period?
I don't think that was on him. The Flames were just usually overshadowed by an even greater team around that time. If not for the Oilers, the Flames may have had three Cups in the 80s. Vernon was a five-time All-star, took the Flames to the finals in '86 with a little help from Steve Smith, and won a Conn Smythe with Detroit in the 90s. Vernon was a bit inconsistent but also clutch, like a rich man's Marc-Andre Fleury. Being a Calgary native, he was especially pumped for the Battes of Alberta and usually delievered solid performances. Also, the Flames used to actually be a run-and-gun team in the 80s with the exception of predominantly stay-at-home defenders like Rob Ramage. It's not like the Flames had anything like a New Jersey-esque defensive system in place to boost Vernon's stats. I would rate Kiprusoff as slightly better, but the latter is the foundation of the Flames today. Vernon wasn't needed to be with the likes of Joe Nieuwendyk, Joe Mullen, Joel Otto, Hakan Loob, Gary Suter, Al MacInnis, Doug Gilmour, and Lanny MacDonald. It was a solid core all-around at that time with no serious weak spots in my opinion.

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