Physically, the Calgary Flames are headed to Washington after a 3-0 win in Detroit. But where they go from here, metaphorically, is as up in the air as their flight to the U.S. capital.
What’s their DNA? Darryl Sutter came in to rescue a group that was clearly in disarray last season. He planted seeds hoping that, with a full training camp and preseason together, he could harvest the talent this fall. The challenge is that the team is so top heavy – the current top trio of Johnny Gaudreau, Elias Lindholm and Matthew Tkachuk is supported by players that need to overachieve to ensure a level of scoring that can sustain them. Especially if the goaltender has an off night, or the defence gets a little generous with the giveaways.
As marquee as Gaudreau and Tkachuk may be, this isn’t a highly skilled team overall.