Everyone knows about the Flames' big three defencemen, right? Brodie, Gio, and Hamilton. It is obvious that those three will be protected, right? Not so fast, I say, what happens if Jyrki Jokipakka continues to improve?
Jyrki has been a pleasant surprise for the Flames. He was a better defenceman than Russell in Dallas. What are the Flames going to do if he continues to blossom? He was getting better each game, and by the end of the season, it was the steal of the trade deadline.
He was solid in the defensive zone. You did not have to worry about him being caught flat-footed. I mean, he was not perfect, but I feel there is plenty of potential for being a number two pairing dman. The problem is, you can only protect three defencemen.
It will just hard to see Jyrki exposed. He is turning into a valuable asset. Dare I think the Flames are thinking of trading one of the big three to grab a top six forward?
Everyone but the kitchen sink has discussed whether Troy Brouwer is good enough for a top three forward. I strongly feel he is a top six forward, and right now Calgary's top right wing. What am I wondering is, should that be a concern?
On most teams, he would be a top six, not a top three. That is why I feel the Flames may have to consider trading one of the top three dmen. Trading a strength to cover up a weakness. The question is, is disposing of Brodie, Gio, or Hamilton a disaster waiting to happen? Or is it a necessity to make this team that much better?
Tuesday, July 26, 2016
Monday, July 4, 2016
Well, how did the Flames do at Free Agency Frenzy? Going into the Frenzy, the Flames needed a right wing and a backup goalie. Check right wing, and check back up.
General Manager Brad has said he is not done and would like to add defencemen. It is evident that Brad will have to make another move to make that happen.
The Flames did well fixing the goaltending issue with Elliot and Johnson. Brian Elliot's stats speak for themselves. He is a solid goaltender who knows how to win. For the first time in years, the Flames have a goalie who will be consistent and give them a chance to win every night.
Chad Johnson gives the Flames an established goaltender. They needed a backup goalie who can steal a game or two. It is vital for the Flames to have a backup and be competitive.
The Flames signing Troy Brouwer is huge. Troy is a solid player, who knows what it takes to win. He is a stable influence on the younger players, who will look up to him for his leadership skills. Troy will be a good fit for Monahan and Gaudreau, who have been looking for an RW since the end of time.
Let's talk about assets that the Flames could trade to get the defenseman Brad said he would like to acquire.
In no particular order, these are the assets I would consider moving:
Lance put himself out of favour with the Flames' management with his antics last year. Lance can easily be replaced. The problem is that every other team also knows about his actions. But hopefully, there will still be plenty of takers looking for the agitator in their lineup.
It is common knowledge that Flames are shopping Dennis. But finding a home for 5.23 million dollar powerplay specialist can be difficult. Dennis can still potentially be useful. Many teams who could be in the market looking for a powerplay defensemen.
This is the last resort, but if the Flames feel that Sam Bennett, is their 2nd line center, that might make Mikael expendable. Backlund could fetch a pretty good defender for the Flames.
Could the Flames consider trading a player for picks to make room? The Flames could go the free agency route. If they do, I hope the Flames go with Patrick Wiercioch. He is a good number five stay-home defensemen.
I think the Flames are looking for a number four or a number three. They will have to trade a player from their roster for two reasons: first, salary cap, and secondly, you have pay something to get something.
Monday, June 27, 2016
General Manager Brad Treliving made it pretty clear the Flames would not be very busy in the free agency period. So I suspect that the Flames will go the trade route to improve the team.
What still needs to be done? Treliving checked off the biggest weakness by acquiring Brian Elliot. What should his top priority be? He pretty much has three priorities. The first is re-signing Money and Johnny Hockey.
The second one? That is the tricky question. Could it be another backup goalie? Could it be a right winger? With the exchange of Alex Chiasson from the Sens for Patrick Sieloff, will the Flames still be looking for a top 6 forward? Or do they think Chaisson fill the need of a top six forward?
With Chaisson, the Flames get a big right winger who is nasty. He is a role player who could be more in the Flames system. He is a blank distributor, who gets under the opposition's skin. He knows his role and does it very well, but does not fill the need of a top 6 forward.
Next, we have a pretty good idea that the Flames are going to have a new backup goalie, as Ortio did not get the qualifying offer. I can think a few goalies out there including Al Montoya, Johnson, Chad.
List of nonqualified players.
Kenny Agostino (LW)
Bill Arnold (C)
Joe Colborne (C)
Turner Elson (LW)
Josh Jooris (C)
Joni Ortio (G)
Kevin Poulin (G)
Drew Shore (C)
Bryce Van Brabant (LW)
The Flames are not qualifying Colborne to avoid arbitration. They are still trying to sign him; ditto on Jooris and Ortio.