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12-09-2013, 04:23 PM
  #6
MatthewFlames
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My Kingdom for a defenseman....

Right now the Flames have 15 (yup, fifteen) defenseman on their roster or prospects list who have played more than 1 game in the NHL this season.

Of the NHL regulars Jake Gardiner is making the most of injuries and poor defensive play in Toronto and is playing 22-25 minutes a night, something Dion Phanuef does every game.

Down in Carolina, Andrej Sekera has found a new lease of life, leading that team in points from the back end, despite the emergence of Justin Faulk and Ryan Murphy.

Patrick Wiercioch is having an up and down season. He still doesn't use his big frame as he should and continues to be a work in progress. Also in Ottawa, Mark Borowiecki has used his call up to add a physical presence. In 13 games he has 48 PIM.

Jamie McBain has taken on added responsibility in Buffalo, where he is 4th on the team in ice time.

In Calgary, Derek Smith and Chris Breen have played in 15 games between them while Martin Marincin finally made his NHL debut against them for the Oilers.

Calvin de Haan struggled early in the season while getting back up to speed after missing a huge chunk of the season last year. His recent 4 game stint (playing 19 minutes a game) for the Islanders shows he is well and truly over those problems. Has focused on playing better in his own zone and has impressed enough that he should stay with the team for the foreseeable future.

Nick Holden had to wait a long time for his NHL debut but he's been a pleasant surprise in Colorado, where he has 4 points in 10 games and tries to prove he belongs in the worlds best league.

Mattias Ekholm has had his ups and downs in Nashville as a rookie defenseman but he's a complete package that just needs consistency.

Dmitry Orlov was called up a half dozen times without dressing as the Capitals tried to meet contract requirements to stop him going to the KHL. When his agent fired off a trade request Orlov was inserted into the line-up and has picked up where he left off before last seasons injury marred campaign, playing in the last 4 Capitals games.

Ryan Whitney is in the minors now but started the year in the NHL.

NEWS AND NOTES

Jeff Skinner is the NHL's first star of the week.

Valeri Nichushkin has 13 points in his last 15 games for the Stars and may be edging back into Calder consideration.

Taylor Leier - 173rd overall and Josh Anderson - 122nd overall, both from the 2012 draft, continue the Flames trend of finding genuine NHL prospects in the late rounds. Both are in Canada's prelim WJC camp.

Marco Mueller, Radek Faksa and Oscar Dansk are in their respective teams evaluation camps for the World Juniors.

Colton Sceviour finally got his well deserved call up to the NHL. He's second in scoring in the entire AHL playing for the Texas Stars.

On Course for the Mountain Due

For the first time the Flames may qualify for all $4 million dollars from the Mountain Due endorsement. In the WHL the Flames have 3 players in the top 8 in scoring, with Oliver Bjorkstrand and Graham Black joining Leier in that category. Only Black won't miss time due to World Juniors.

Dansk leads all OHL goalies and in the NCAA Sam Brittain is 2nd in GAA and 3rd in SV% while Martin Oullette's recent play has seen him start to climb into the top ten in those stats.

John Klingberg has 13 points as a Dman in Sweden and only needs 7 more to qualify.

Adam Clendending has 17 points in the AHL in only 25 games, well over half way to his needed total.

Ryan Culkin and Justin Hache are outside the top 5 in D scoring the QMJHL by just a single point.


Last edited by MatthewFlames: 12-11-2013 at 11:00 AM.
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