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Report: Flames in talks with Brian Burke (update)

Sep 4, 2013, 9:04 PM EDT

brianburkegetty Getty Images

Late update (11:20 ET): TSN’s Bob McKenzie reports that Brian Burke is “deep in discussions” with the Calgary Flames, but nothing is done yet.


Reports are circulating that the Flames might be primed to hire Burke as the team’s new CEO.

Bruce Dowbiggin cites sources who explain that Burke is headed to the area to roll out the announcement, while Rogers Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston reports that there’s “more than a little fire” to back up that smoke.

Going further, McKenzie recalls that Burke fired down similar rumors in June – he visited Calgary because his daughter lives in the area – but notes that the rumblings haven’t been confirmed or denied on Wednesday.

Update: Fan 960’s Josh Humphries reports that Burke is in town to participate in a charity event on Thursday. Is that all he’s in town for? We’ll see.

While we wait, it’s worth noting a few points:

  • The team was hoping to fill an executive position, even talking with Brendan Shanahan, so it’s clear the organization wants to make a move in the future.
  • Burke orchestrated a big move with Calgary, as he brought Dion Phaneuf to Toronto during his days as Maple Leafs GM.
  • Current Flames GM Jay Feaster is an avowed fan of Burke, as you can see back in this 2009 column for The Hockey News.
  • Maybe the most entertaining consideration: Burke can renew his rivalry with Edmonton Oilers exec Kevin Lowe, with the added bonus of it being the Battle of Alberta.

It all shapes up for an interesting hypothetical situation, but we’ll wait and see if there really is much fire to go with the smoke.

  1. phillyphanatic77 - Sep 4, 2013 at 9:25 PM

    If he’s hired as CEO it could be a bad sign for Feaster. I’m not sure if that means Burke would be above, below, or working laterally in unison with Feaster, but bringing in an executive with more experience than your GM probably isn’t a vote of confidence. On the other hand, if they were considering firing Feaster they probably would’ve done it already. Before the rebuild. And this is just a rumor anyway.

  2. poonerman - Sep 4, 2013 at 9:55 PM

    Is Feaster pregnant?

    • greatmiamisportsmind - Sep 5, 2013 at 12:26 AM

      no just a lard

    • Lupy Nazty Philthy - Sep 5, 2013 at 9:11 AM

      I’d be careful what you say. Feaster might throw you into his Rancor pit.

  3. sens101 - Sep 4, 2013 at 10:57 PM

    The oilers GM is Craig Mactavish not Kevin Lowe…

  4. canucks30 - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:02 PM

    McTavish is the GM in name only. Much like what Calgary will become if this story is true, the Oilers operate in a puppet regime with Kevin Lowe calling most of the shots.

  5. redecopp - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:56 PM

    @phillyphanatic77 Not really; It has been common knowledge since the end of last season that Ken King was planning on stepping aside to focus exclusively on developing plans for a new arena or sporting complex (Flames own two hockey teams and the local CFL team, both sports needing new stadiums). I think Feaster would have been fired before the draft if they didn’t want him for the re-build.

  6. badintent - Sep 5, 2013 at 1:13 AM

    IN other News , Burke is suing half of Calgary for libel and slander regarding rumors of him knocking up Hazel Mae. . Just Kidding Brian. !

  7. Lupy Nazty Philthy - Sep 5, 2013 at 9:06 AM

    Burke’s ego may be his undoing, but if you’re a team in need of a rebuild (which Calgary is) he’s not a bad guy to have around. He helped rebuild the Canucks and Leafs. Both teams we’re pretty bad when he started. He’d help in Calgary.

    Just don’t let him trade away your first round picks.

    • billyboyhk - Sep 5, 2013 at 11:46 AM

      Well he likes truculence, and the Flames already have McGrattan, so that’s a start.

  8. billyboyhk - Sep 5, 2013 at 11:42 AM

    BARN FIGHT!!! Just outside of Red Deer.

    • badintent - Sep 6, 2013 at 2:16 AM

      Be Kind to dumb animals. That would include the entire management and players of the Flames.

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