Friends, it’s almost 2020. That means that we’re nearing the end of the latest decade. It’s been a decade of change for the Calgary Flames, as they slid into a rebuild and came out on the other side with an interesting young core.
As we reflect on the past nine seasons of hockey – less the 2019 half of 2019-20 and the half season lost to the 2012 lockout – let’s take a look at the Flames’ statistical leaders over the past decade.
For skaters, Mark Giordano leads the way with 680 games during the past decade – and this includes him missing the last quarter of the 2014-15 season with a bicep tear and having the first chunk of 2012-13 wiped out due to the lockout. Chasing him are Mikael Backlund (619), TJ Brodie (570), Matt Stajan (558) and Sean Monahan (471).
Sean Monahan leads the race here by a fairly big margin, netting 172 goals. He’s ahead of Johnny Gaudreau (133), Backlund (129), Giordano (116) and some fellow named Jarome Iginla (96). Monahan is ranked 58th in the NHL in goals since January 1, 2010, despite not debuting in the NHL until the 2013-14 season.
In terms of situational goals, Monahan leads on the power play with 49 – followed by Giordano (39), Iginla (29), Gaudreau (27) and Backlund (25). Matthew Tkachuk is just behind Backlund with 24, and that’s with not really getting significant PP time until very recently.
Backlund leads in shorthanded goals with 11, followed by Giordano (10), Michael Frolik (8), Mark Jankowski (7) and Curtis Glencross (5).
Surprise, surprise: Monahan leads in game-winners with 35, followed by Backlund (26), Gaudreau (25), Giordano (19) and Iginla (15). 10 of Monahan’s winners were scored in overtime, a statistic that ties him for seventh in the NHL.
Giordano leads in helpers with 285, followed fairly closely by Gaudreau (254) and further behind are Brodie (203) and Backlund and Monahan (tied with 191).
He has an advantage due to his tenure, but Giordano leads the way with 401 points. Despite missing a good chunk of the decade due to not being pro hockey players yet, Gaudreau (387) and Monahan (363) are close behind. Backlund (320) and Brodie (247) round out the top five.
Giordano’s point total is 12th in the NHL during that time-span, behind Erik Karlsson, Brent Burns, Keith Yandle, Dustin Byfuglien, Kris Letang, Duncan Keith, Drew Doughty, P.K. Subban, Victor Hedman, Ryan Suter and John Carlson.
The statistic is more of a curiosity than something that tells you how good a player is, but the top five and bottom five of the decade are fairly peculiar. The five “best” are recent stars: Giordano (+79), Elias Lindholm (+30), Backlund (+30), Gaudreau (+29) and Tkachuk (+27). The “worst” are four rebuild era stars… and a newer face. Sam Bennett paces the rear with -52, followed by Jay Bouwmeester (-49), Chris Butler (-42), Dennis Wideman (-33) and Mike Cammalleri (-32).
Again, it’s plus/minus and it’s more wacky than a useful stat, but it’s super odd that Bennett is worse than the players who were here when the team was absolutely lousy.
All hail Kiprusoff
Despite retiring in 2013, Miikka Kiprusoff leads the Flames over the past decade in games (203), wins (95), losses (78) and shutouts (11). Nobody else on the leaderboard comes remotely close to any of these marks – Karri Ramo has the next-most games (111), wins (49), losses (42) and is tied with Mike Smith for the next-most shutouts (5).