Monday, April 28, 2014

Peter, you will be missed

My first time meeting Peter Maher 

It was the year after the lockout and the Flames were practicing at the Don Hartman arena. My son really wanted to meet Peter Maher. His favorite saying was YEAH BABY. The moment we saw him, my son went up to him to meet his idol. I introduced us, and my son screams out YEAH BABY. Peter asked him if he wanted his job. I will never forget that moment. My son was 10 feet tall all that afternoon.

My favorite YEAH BABY call

This one was really hard. It is a toss up. 

The biggest is probably May 25th, 1989. Hearing his call announcing the Flames as Stanley Cup champions gave me chills. It brought me to tears. It made me feel like I was there.  

Then there was the Iggy 50th goal call. You could tell that he sincerely loved Iggy. The relationship those two had will always be special.  That YEAH BABY call will always be a special moment for me. I will never forget it. 

What I loved most about Peter Maher

I have so many great memories of Peter. His Flames History on The Fan was a favorite show of mine. I always took time to listen to it. It was perfect timing for me, just when I was picking my wife up from work. Of course I would have to tell my family not to talk during this time.

Another thing I love was the fact you could never tell who scored. His tone did not change when the opposing team scored. I always admired his professionalism. He has integrity and love for the game. Yes Peter, you will be missed.

Originally posted on Flames Jambalaya

Flames hire Brad Treliving as new General Manager

The Positives

Burke went into this process with this process with three basic objectives. The biggest would be to get a great hockey mind. Someone who knows good young talent when sees it. He also had to make sure he got someone from the type of organization the Flames would want to model themselves after. 

No objective could be achieved without the others. In Burke's mind, the Flames are a good young solid team with potential. Something the Coyotes started out to be. We needed a man who specialized in good young talent. The Coyotes are a very good young team, who have gotten that way by developing good young talent. So who better to get than the man who was in charge of that process? 

Brad will be a huge asset in the draft. Remember Burke's complaints about our drafts? We have to hit more homeruns. Our drafts have to be bigger, more skilled players. We have to more diligent in finding the superstars. Brad Treliving specializes in developing young talent. He knows young talent when he sees them and knows what to with them when he sees them. Basically, he relates to the young talent.

Burke is very good at negotiating for developing stars. He knows how to bring in the big names. His hockey savvy is finding ways to make a deal work. What he needs help with is finding diamonds in the rough. Let's put it this way—he can make a diamond into a shinier diamond. What he lacks is getting it to the diamond stage.

The Flames have always had problems developing their own. That is why they have always had other team's prospects. Brad fills the gap here. The Flames drastically need to start developing their talent. The process has reevaluated. They have to clean up the mess in the organization. Mr. Treliving is a good start to get back where we were.

What does this mean in the rebuild?

Basically, it is telling us we are rebuilding, with a hint of retooling. The main reason Burke wanted Treliving is because Burke is really in charge. Brad's job is really closer to Head of Scouting, in charge of the rebuilding. 

Burke will be in charge of the retooling. All transactions will go through Burke. In other words, if Cammy resigns, it will because of Burke. He is a very good salesman. I am sure he could sell me anything he wanted, and make me think I wanted it. So yes, Brad might still be puppet, but we have a very good, devoted GM who has a mind of his own.

Originally posted at Flames Jambalaya

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Leafs Memories

I have been a true Leaf fan since I was a young tyke. Since the year 1967, the last year we won the Stanley Cup. Since my early days of childhood watching the Leafs. I have memories of me and my dad sitting down at suppertime watching the Leafs on "Hockey Night In Canada.”

Even though I am old enough to remember the 1960 's my decade as a Leaf’s fan was the 1970's. My first favourite centre was Darryl Sittler. Darryl was the heart of the Leafs for his whole career. He was everything to the Leafs. He spent fifteen seasons with the Leafs, which included one special night the Bruins would never forget. I am talking about his 10-point night:  February 7, 1976. Six goals and four assists in one night. What made it more special was that it was against the Bruins.

Of course, there was also Darryl's performance on April 22. I remember this game; his four-goal performance in the Leaf's 8-5 victory. He was truly at his best, taking the team on his shoulders and showing true leadership skills.

Another one my favourite players was Lanny Macdonald. He was a true sniper, and pretty much Darryl's best friend. His two best years were in 1976-77 and 1977-78. He scored near the 50-goal plateau twice; 46 and 47 respectively. He was one of the best snipers in the game, known for his quick release. His shot was not the hardest, but often Lanny would get set up by his good buddy, Darryl, for one-timers. 

My favorite memory of Lanny Macdonald is April 29, 1978 in Long Island, the overtime goal in game seven. The goal that was heard all over Canada. I am sure my whole neighbourhood could hear me screaming. 
Another memory from my youth was Ian Turnbull's five-goal performance against the Wings in a 9-1 rout February 2, 1977. Ian was a much-underrated puck-moving defenseman.

So yes, I am a very old and dedicated Leaf fan. These are not all of my favorite memories, but they are some of my best ones. I have always had two favorite teams, and only written for one of them. That is going to change.

Image: By Horge (Own work) [GFDL ( or CC-BY-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons