As one of the more reasonable Calgary fans pointed out, we're a puck possession team, and teams that have the puck a majority of the time tend to draw more calls. Is it really that hard for Flames fans to understand? Probably not, it's just a good excuse for them to get all emo and curse a team that every other fanbase loves to hate, instead of coming to the realization that winning teams don't let the opposition's best forward squirt through two defenders, make a perfect pass to the second best forward, and cough up the tying goal in the dying seconds of the third period.
Of course there are going to be people who don't like Modano. The guy had a reputation for being a whiner back in his prime years (earning the nickname "Madonna" for it), and was the proverbial "I score goals and am pretty" type of player.
Let's be honest folks. He's here because he can still produce some points and maybe give the younger forwards some offensive pointers, not because he's going to be the blue collar guy who hits everything in sight, fights, and is a penalty killing machine. I guarantee there are going to be times when we'll be unhappy with his play, just like Bert last season. We'll ride it out, and I think that in hindsight next offseason, most of us will have a favorable opinion of what he brought to the Wings, especially for $1.25 million.
With the addition of Modano and the return of Huds we've got a serious third line, now we hope everyone stays healthy. I'm chomping at the bit to see what this team can do.
I agree, their core is still there. Make no mistake, the Central should be very competitive, with Detroit and Chicago vying for the top spot, and Rinne/Halak stealing several games for the Preds and Blues respectively.
As for the Stanley Cup, a lot of times it's all about who gets hot and when. If Osgood didn't step up to the plate a couple years ago, would Detroit have won in 2008? Would they have had a shot to repeat in 2009 without his play in net?
Chicago has about as much chance of repeating as Detroit has of getting back to the pinnacle.
He tied for the freshman lead in scoring at Notre Dame this past season, with a 6-11-17 line. He plays a strong two-way game and doesn't take many lazy penalties. Look for him to have a 30 pt. sophomore season and surprise us in the near future.
This team will be better by virtue of the fact that they couldn't possibly be hit with the injury bug any worse than they were last year. Hudler is a reasonable upgrade from Williams because when you overlook the fact that both are lazy backcheckers, Hudler can actually shoot, score regularly, and run a powerplay, and he isn't a locker room cancer.
Howard will get another year under his belt, though I felt that he played too much last year and would like to see Osgood start 20-25 games if Babcock will let him.
Will this team win the President's Trophy? Probably not, but unless you're Washington or San Jose, who has wet dreams about earning that meaningless piece of hardware? They should be neck-and-neck with Chicago for the Central, and probably finish 3rd or 4th in the West with 1st round home ice advantage.