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2016-17 Player Preview: Micheal Ferland

by Torie Peterson / Calgary Flames

When Micheal Ferland's name comes up, one's mind inevitably goes to the Calgary Flames' 2015 playoff run.

Filling in for an injured Lance Bouma, the hulking winger immediately established himself by setting an absolutely punishing pace in the Flames' first round series against the Vancouver Canucks.

He threw out 40 hits, scored two goals, posted four points, and put 10 shots on net in the opening round of the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs, becoming a cult hero in the process.

In Calgary's second round series against the Anaheim Ducks, Ferland was limited to three games and after the series had wrapped up, he disclosed he had been playing with a torn oblique muscle - a malady that occurred in Game 4 of the team's series against the Canucks.

In total, he ended up with three goals, five points, 23 PIM, a plus-three rating and averaging 12:33 of ice time per game in nine playoff skates.

Given what he had accomplished in the postseason, expectations for the Manitoba product were high after he inked a two-year pact with the Flames back on Sept. 15, 2015.

But it was slow going to start the 2015-16 campaign.

Ferland's first point came on Oct. 17, an assist in a loss to the Edmonton Oilers, and he didn't find the back of the net until Nov. 28, when he scored against the San Jose Sharks in a setback at the SAP Center.

He bounced all over the lineup, playing on all four lines and on both wings, and was never able to generate any sort of consistency. He also battled injuries on two separate occasions, suffering an MCL sprain early in the year and an upper body injury in late January.

When the 2015-16 season concluded on Apr. 9, he had four goals and 18 points through 71 games.

"I obviously wanted more, expected more from myself," he acknowledged earlier this year.

"[I need to] be more physical, be on the puck more ... just be harder."

Over the course of his career, the 6-foot-2, 208-pound winger has shown he possesses the skill set to play a power forward role.

Throughout his junior career in the Western Hockey League, he put up big numbers with the Brandon Wheat Kings and the Saskatoon Blades. During his best year in the league, he scored an impressive 47 goals and 96 points in 68 regular season contests with the Wheat Kings.

In the American Hockey League, he averaged a very respectable 0.72 points-per-game before his rookie season was cut short by a knee injury. The following year, he played 32 games with Adirondack Flames, scoring seven goals and 15 points.

During his 97 regular season games in the NHL, he has netted six goals and 23 points while amassing 61 PIM.

So, while he was disappointed with how his first full season with the Flames transpired, he understands he has the tools to succeed in the league.

He has opted to stay in Calgary for the duration of the off-season, training with Flames' strength and conditioning coach Ryan van Asten in order to be fully prepared for the 2016-17 season.

"This summer is obviously a huge summer for me," he declared. "Next year is a big year so [I'm just] staying focused."

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