Opinions have been sanitized for your sanity... The new NHL season brings back memories of seasons past, so I've decided to do a little retrospective of...the Year of Goaltending Dangerously, when the Flames set the NHL record for most goaltenders used in a season. The year was 1998-99. The Flames, reeling after a horrible 67 point season, had set their goaltending hopes on Ken Wreggett and youngster Tyler Moss. Wregget soon got injured, leading Moss to start, right? Well, MOSS got injured the next week. So, now the goaltending tandem was rookie Jean-Sebastian Giguere and emergency junior call-up Tyrone Garner. GIGURE got injured! The Flames were desperate. While they called in Russian Andrei Trefilov from the IHL, they scoured the city for goaltenders...and found former Oilers goalie Fred Brathwaite training with the Canadian National Team. Trefilov played twice before the Flames signed Brathwaite and returned Garner to junior. Soon after, the injury bug subsided...and Brathwaite got a starting job in the NHL. Sure, it didn't last. And he was subsequently shunted to back-up for Grant Fuhr...and then Mike Vernon...and then traded for Roman Turek. But still, few Flames fans will ever forget that magical season where all hell broke loose, Fleury was traded...and goaltending magic and injuries filled the ice.
Flames: 0-0-0-0 [Sept 20: vs. Canucks] Stampeders: 3-9-0-2 [Last place in CFL]
Dynasty? Dynasty? That's a pretty strong term for a team that has won the Cup a total of one times in a row (sic). Now admittedly the Wings have won three times in the last six years (including back to back in 1997 and 1998), but when I think 'dynasty' I think of the Oilers winning 5 times in seven years (1984 to 1990), the Islanders 4 in a row from 1980 to 1983, or the Habs 4 in a row from 1976 to 1979. Most impressive of all, of course, was the Habs 5 in a row from 1956 to 1960.
If the Wings can win this year it's put them closer to dynastic status, but even then I'd be leery of calling them that. Right now I'd say that they have been the dominant team in the league for the past 8 years, but dynasty? Not yet, but stay tuned...
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Here's the playoff races that will be interesting in the last month of the regular season: Atlantic Division Title Philadelphia Flyers vs. New Jersey Devils Devils: 89 points, 39-19-6-5 with 13 games left Flyers: