On Thursday, the Calgary Flames traded Rene Bourque, their second-line left-winger, to Montreal for Mike Cammalleri, himself a left-winger, who led the Habs in goal-scoring over their improbable 2010 playoff run. It’s been said that you shouldn’t give up youth for experience or size for, well, lack of size in a trade, and while Bourque has about six inches and 30 pounds on the smaller winger, he’s actually a year older–well, six months and two days, to be exact.
Mind you, though he’s been a bit of a late-bloomer, Bourque posted back-to-back 27-goal seasons for the Flames while hardly missing a game these past two years. Cammalleri has netted 26 and 19 in that same time frame for the Habs, while sitting out 15 games a season. But it’s his output during his lone season in a Flames jersey–2008-09–when he scored 39 goals and added 42 assists, that has the Saddledome buzzing about Mike da 5’9’s return. Can he lead us back to the promised land?
It’s worth noting that Mike C’s the third player the Flames have brought back over the past year and a half after giving them a little time away from each other. Alex Tanguay, who had a career-best 82 points his first year here, was let go after slipping to 58 in ’07-’08. Following a couple disappointing seasons in the Eastern Conference, he re-signed with Calgary last season, posting a respectable 22 goals and 47 assists in his return. Unfortunately, he’s now out indefinitely with what some people say is a concussion.
The other guy we brought back last year was Olli Jokinen, who was really only gone for 25 games, having been dealt to the Rangers before the deadline in 2010. Though we got him to take a 50 per cent pay cut, he still struggled at times last season, but seems to have clicked with Jarome Iginla this year, posting 35 points through 45 games.
Although we’d hafta move one of them to right wing, I think that Tanguay-Jokinen-Cammalleri would make a pretty solid second (time around) line, with Glencross-Moss-Iginla giving us two trios that can score. Of course, Moss had ankle surgery three weeks ago and he, like Tanguay, is out indefinitely. Get well soon, boys!
Although it seems strange that the Flames are trying to reassemble their 2008 roster, keep in mind that the last year they made the playoffs was ’08-’09, when they finished fifth in the Western Conference. Sure, they lost in five games to Chicago in the first round, but hey, a lotta those guys from 2004 have seen better days, y’know? ;)