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2017-18 Pacific Division Goodbyes: Calgary Flames

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No, bad! Put out that fire right now!

NHL: Chicago Blackhawks at Calgary Flames Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

Dearest Flames Fans:

Please try not to set anything on fire upon receiving this news. I regret to inform you that the Flames’ season ended with the regular season a few days ago. Then again, last year they got swept by the Ducks, so it’s not like you went too far then, either. At least this year you finally won a game at the Honda Center?

Look, I know the San Jose Sharks swept the Flames season series this year. But this isn’t about us. This is about you. What can I do to help you reach acceptance? Maybe I can list things that I hoped would pan out about the Flames this year that didn’t.

The Flames went into this year hopeful about goaltending, having traded up to acquire All-Star Mike Smith as a starting goaltender. Unfortunately, the backup goaltending situation left something to be desired, starting the year with Eddie Lack, who was promptly assigned to the Stockton Heat (who… are somehow not yet eliminated from Calder Cup contention) and subsequently sent to New Jersey to be replaced by Jon Gillies and David Rittich.

And let’s talk a little bit about the weirdness around Eddie Lack. In the off-season, Calgary sent the ECHL player Keegan Kanzig to Carolina in exchange for Eddie Lack and Ryan Murphy, who was literally released the next day and subsequently signed with the Minnesota Wild. In the later transaction with Jersey to send Lack away, Calgary received Dalton Prout, who was promptly buried in Stockton. Looks like that series of trades ultimately worked out, just not for Eddie Lack in Calgary.

Also of note, former Flame Reto Berra spent some time in the NHL as the Anaheim Ducks’ third goalie, posting a .926 save percentage and a 2.31 goals against average over five appearances. So you know, that happened.

Jaromir Jagr signed with the Flames on October 2, missing training camp and the preseason. In hindsight, it seems that those two things may have been useful, as Jagr only wound up playing 22 games for the Flames organization, scoring a single goal. What a way for a legend to go out. If it makes you feel better, he didn’t score any goals in Kladno.

Another older NHL player with ties to Calgary that didn’t seem to work out was Jarome Iginla, who made zero NHL appearances and zero Olympic appearances this year. He did skate with the Bruins briefly.

The Providence Bruins. Of the American Hockey League. Sorry Iggy. Hope you enjoy retirement in Edmonton.

And I’m gonna have to say, the most exciting hockey to come out of a professional Calgary-based hockey team this year was the triple overtime game the Calgary Inferno played against Kunlun Red Star leading up to the Canadian Women’s Hockey League’s Clarkson Cup Finals. How did that go?

Oh, Calgary lost? And they missed their plane? Oof. Well, at least the Inferno have an awesome logo.

So yeah. Sorry about this season. I hope the next one turns out a little better for you. At least you finished above the Oilers? To close this out, I would like to reiterate: please do not burn things.