Equally interesting, yet entirely opposite ramifications await the losing team in tonight’s Game 7 showdown between the Flames and Sharks.
If seventh-seeded Calgary can’t come through in the clutch, the Flames and their fans will lament the loss, but welcome back nearly the same squad as this season since most of the principals are under contract already.
Not so much in San Jose, where one of the Stanley Cup favourites will enter the NHL’s version of a chop shop this summer should home ice advantage prove to be anything but tonight.
Head coach Ron Wilson will almost certainly be ushered out, captain Patrick Marleau will be shopped prior to his no-trade clause kicking in next year, and GM Doug Wilson will be under intense pressure to shake up the chemistry of this bunch.
Two months ago, these teams were in similar circumstances; each was plagued by consistent inconsistency. However, the Sharks were the NHL’s hottest team over the final quarter of the season while the Flames continued to ride the roller coaster, and those different stretch drives shaped the expectations and resulting consequences for each club.
>> Looks like a retractable roof is in the cards for B.C. Place if David Podmore and Warren Buckley’s recommendations mean anything.
The Pavco chair and CEO both believe that making the dome transformable from indoor to outdoor is the best course of action, although the retractable portion of the new roof would only unveil the field itself when open.
The time frame for construction is approximately 21 months, meaning any significant hiccup could impact the opening ceremonies at the 2010 Olympic Games.
As for the effect on the B.C. Lions, the current proposal does not require any alteration of the CFL schedule, although there are indescript “inconveniences” that could arise during the renovation. The $150-$200 million project would be funded entirely through commercial tower developments at the west end of B.C. Place.
The model for the venture is the Veltins Arena in Gelsenkirchen, Germany, which you can check out at www.veltins-arena.de.
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