Earlier in June, we asked for Flames fans from around the world to tell us about their experiences cheering for the team from outside of Calgary. We did not expect to receive so many amazing replies from great fans all around the world.
So far, we’ve heard from fans spanning 102 cities and towns, 23 countries, and six continents. We’ve covered eight provinces and territories in Canada, and 19 states in the United States. The Flames community truly does cover the entire planet, and we’re lucky and proud to be part of that community. If you missed our post on the overall results and a coverage map, check it out here!
Full Global Flames Fan Series: Australia, England, Scotland, Finland, Sweden, Germany, the Czech Republic, Netherlands, Switzerland, Morocco, Tunisia, Tajikistan, Brazil, China, the United States, and Canada outside of Calgary.
First up in our Global Flames Fan Series is a collection of experiences from our friends in Australia! We’ve compiled responses to our questionnaire below from two Australian Flames fans, the first from Melbourne and the second from Hobart. We also received responses from fans in Canberra, Brisbane, and Sydney. Enjoy!
How did you become a Flames fan?
Watching the 1988 Olympics in Melbourne, Australia (I was 3) and first getting introduced to hockey and the NHL, when I chose the Flames
Lived in Canada for 12 months, in BC and everyone went for the Canucks. I hated them! We lived closer to Calgary so they were my team. Went to some games and loved it! The Flames are now mine!
Tell us about your experience following the Flames from outside of Calgary.
I listened to every game, and when we had the cup run in 2004, I went to Crown casino in the city centre just to watch every game. It was an hour each way but I couldn’t miss it.
Obviously the season is in my summer and on during the day here in Australia. I am always checking scores, news and team lineups over the internet everyday. It’s hard as many of my friends haven’t been to a game or follow it which makes it hard to talk about it. I have some Canadian friends who work on Salmon Farms here so when I see them I am always giving it to them because they are either Canucks or Leaf fans! I don’t think I have ever met another Flames fan here in Australia.
Since moving back from Canada, I have been back to North America and Canada to watch games live. I have been to a few home game stands in January some years and did an amazing away game streak where I got to watch them in New York, New Jersey and then Columbus over 4 nights. This was an amazing experience at away venues and cheaper tickets which allowed a glass ticket for one of the games. I highly recommend to follow an away game run over a few nights!
Do you watch games? If so, where do you typically watch and with whom?
When I can, I watch the highlights each morning on YouTube, and if it’s a matinee I watch it.
Yes i do watch as many games as I can via NHL TV. We get 2 games per week on Sports channels but rarely Flames games.
Home games start about about 1pm so I try and sneak some action in while I’m at work when they play. I’ve been known to have the games on in class as I am a teacher! Just hide the screen! The best games are on the West Coast Swing as they have a later starting time so I get the last period after class.
If I miss it I always watch the extended highlights package.
What is the most popular sport where you live, and which teams? What challenges do you face following the Flames?
Aussie Rules in Australia. Its not on normal Channels here so very hard to find ways to watch games.
Australian Rules Football is the major sport here in my home state. It’s a very physical game with lots of tackling WITHOUT pads! Games are only 1 per week so having the flames on during the week is amazing. I go for Essendon and have been a fan for as long as I can remember. Their main colours are red and black, similar to the Flames.
What is the best experience you’ve had as a Flames fan from where you live?
It was the cup run
I can’t get too excited about the Flames from here but watching the playoff games are always great, even though its on a laptop!!!
What is the worst experience you’ve had as a Flames fan from where you live?
Game 7 of the Stanley Cup final. Still cuts deep seeing the no goal in Game 6.
Not being able to get to many games! I love being there!
Who is your favourite player and why?
These days Mangiapane, but I used to love Val Bure. I met him in 2000 when I got to see the Flames beat the Stars 2-1 at the dome.
Early on when I started to watch the games when living in Canada, I liked Olli Jokinen and Curtis Glencross. Now its Johnny Gaudreau. His speed, skill and ability to find open players is amazing!
Any last thoughts you’d like to share?
Going to Calgary in 2000 was a dream come true. I hope to experience it again soon.
Living so far away from a team you love to follow makes it hard but with a good time difference and games on during the day does make it easier. It is very expensive to get there to watch games as well but when it happens, totally worth every cent! Can’t wait to get back into the C of Red!
Thanks to these two Flames fans for providing such great answers to our questionnaire. There were several other Australian fans as well, and it looks like there’s a nice little community of supporters in Australia.
Are you from Australia and follow the Flames? Tell us about your experiences being a fan in the comments or on social media.
Stay tuned tomorrow for another Global Flames Fan Series article featuring our friends from England in the United Kingdom!