Flames fans react to team's slow death out of playoff race

Apr 11 2023, 2:45 pm

The Calgary Flames, perhaps mercifully for their fans, have just one game left in their 2022-23 season.

With Monday night’s 3-2 shootout loss to the Nashville Predators, the Flames have officially found themselves on the outside looking in of the 2023 NHL postseason.

After finishing the 2021-22 season atop the Pacific Division, merely making the playoffs seemed like the bare minimum of success for Calgary this season.

Of course, the team had some high-profile departures in Johnny Gaudreau via free agency to Columbus and Matthew Tkachuk via trade to the Florida Panthers, but the return of Jonathan Huberdeau and Mackenzie Weegar along with the contract signing of Nazem Kadri seemed to mitigate most of those absences, at least on paper.

In practice (and in games), the Flames never really found their mojo this season, and will be heading home for an extended offseason following Wednesday night’s game against the San Jose Sharks.

Calgary had a slim chance of keeping their playoff hopes alive with a win in any fashion last night, but now sit too far out of reach to nab the eighth and final playoff spot in the NHL’s Western Conference.

Here’s how Flames fans took the loss that officially knocked them out of playoff contention:

 

If there’s anything to look forward to for Flames fans at this point, it might be the NHL Draft Lottery coming up next month.

Although based on the current rules, the team’s actually too far out of the running to have a shot at the No. 1 overall pick and the chance to draft phenom prospect Connor Bedard, as teams are only eligible to move up 10 spots should they win the draft lottery. The Flames currently have the NHL’s 14th-worst record, meaning they’d draft fourth if they do see the lottery balls go their way come May 8.

Back to the drawing board, we guess?

The Flames close out their season tomorrow night, with an 8 pm ET puck drop at home against San Jose.

Adam LaskarisAdam Laskaris

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