The Calgary Flames will pick three times in this summer’s draft, which gives the team a chance to land some piact players. They won’t have a shot at top prospects Seth Jones, Nathan MacKinnon or Jonathan Drouin when they first pick at the sixth spot, but they will still be able to land some solid talent. Given their issues on defense and in net, those are two areas to target but that doesn’t mean the Flames should pass up a top offensive talent if they have that opportunity.
There is a chance that Darnell Nurse could be there when the Flames make the sixth pick, and they may want to take a good look at the promising young defenseman. Nurse has great size, and proved to be a more-than-able offensive defenseman in his second season with the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds of the OHL. He scored 12 goals and had 41 points in 68 games, while also collecting 116 penalty minutes. Rasmus Ristolainen of Finland could also be a solid pick here, and were it not for Jones these two would easily be tops among defensemen heading into the summer.
Another area the Flames have a chance to strengthen is goaltending, which is important given the likely loss of Miikka Kiprusoff and few proven prospects in the system. With their later two picks (somewhere between 20 and 30), they should have a good chance at landing top goaltender Zachary Fucale of the Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL). A 45-5-3 record this season and a 2.35 goals-against average have put Fucale on everyone’s radar, and the Flames should definitely try and get their hands on him.
The Flames may have seen veterans Jay Bouwmeester and Jarome Iginla traded away this season, but they will soon have a chance to strengthen their team with the draft picks they got back in exchange for those two players.