Just a few months ago, the Calgary Flames were winners of the NHL's Pacific Division, and one of the top picks to win the Stanley Cup.
Now, after getting eliminated by their provincial rival, the Edmonton Oilers, things have gone from bad to worse for the Flames and their fans.
Their top goal-scorer, Johnny Gaudreau, opted for free agency and is now with the Columbus Blue Jackets. Their second-leading scorer, Matthew Tkachuk, also seems to be on his way out via trade.
Calgary Flames' Stanley Cup Odds
Since losing Gaudreau, the Flames' odds to win the 2023 Stanley Cup at WynnBET Sportsbook have fallen.
- Odds before losing Gaudreau: +1800
- Odds after losing Gaudreau: +2000
If they do end up losing Tkachuk as well, expect their odds to continue to plummet.
Gaudreau Explains Why He Left Calgary
Johnny Gaudreau left the Flames, but don't let that be a sign that Calgary is trending in the wrong direction as a franchise. The 28-year old wrote a heartfelt letter to the city of Calgary in the Players' Tribune, and I encourage you to check it out. When it comes down to it, Gaudreau opted to be closer to his family, something that all of us can relate to.
"But as much as I love hockey … family is everything to me. It’s the most important connection I have. And a few years ago, I think I started to realize how much you sacrifice when you give 100% to your career. I felt like I needed to do more to center my family in my life after we experienced some hard times."
Matt Tkachuk Also Leaving Calgary
While it hasn't been confirmed the reason for it, Matt Tkachuk also has desires of leaving Calgary. Whether it's to be closer to his family, like Gaudreau, or if it's for another reason, reports indicate that he could be traded within a week.
It's hard to blame the players for wanting to play in the country they were born in, but this is bad news for the Flames. Unless they find suitable replacements of Gaudreau and Tkachuk, they could be in for a rough 2022-2023 season.
You can track Iain's bets on Betstamp here.