Phaneuf Key to Flames Success
February 27, 2009 by Big Tony
Dion Phaneuf has played well but he’s making money they pay to guys who should be in Norris Trophy contention and in that respect Phaneuf has greatly underachieved. He scored his 9th goal Friday night but going into the game against the Wild he had 8 goals and 27 assists with a plus/minus of -10…that is unacceptable. Last year Phaneuf had 60 points and was a plus 12 on the year which are very good numbers for a defenseman and it is not reasonable to expect that from someone every year. However, when you’re supposed to be the leading defenseman on a team that gives up more shots than almost anybody else out there you’ve got to step up and score points of your own with regularity. In recent years the Calgary Flames have had some pretty good teams who have not done too much in the playoffs since reaching the finals in 2004. Calgary made many offseason moves to get bigger and tougher in order to be more successful but to do that the Flames will need their top players to be at their best every shift and that includes Phaneuf. As of now Phaneuf’s personal subpar performance has been good enough to put the Flames in prime playoff position but if his play stays at this level against the likes of Chicago, Detroit, or San Jose the Flames will find themselves making another early round exit.