SUN Hockey Pool

Calgary Flames a work in progress

Calgary Flames head coach Bob Hartley talks to his team against the Washington Capitals at the...

Calgary Flames head coach Bob Hartley talks to his team against the Washington Capitals at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C., Oct. 3, 2013. (GEOFF BURKE/USA Today)

WES GILBERTSON, Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 10:25 PM ET

CALGARY - Just hours before the official start of this new season, head coach Bob Hartley took a not-so-subtle swipe at the Calgary Flames of old.

Responding after Thursday’s morning skate in Washington to a curiously-timed question about optional spins on game day, Hartley seized an opportunity to get something off his chest.

“There are no more options,” Hartley said. “The options when to work and when not to work are over. Last year, I did this with this group and, as a coaching staff, we felt it was a disaster. Some guys didn’t use it with common sense.

“We’re paid to play and we’re paid to love this game. And if you don’t love this game, maybe we don’t want you on this team.”

You don’t need a PHD in hockey to figure out Hartley’s blueprint for success for this rebuilding bunch.

No mornings off.

No nights off.

Not even the occasional slack shift.

And you know what? So far, it seems to be working.


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