Sunday, January 12, 2014

The Rumors

As we all know we are in a winter Olympics year. That means there will be an NHL roster freeze before the March 5th NHL trade deadline. That Olympic NHL roster freeze begins February 8th and ends February 23rd, leaving 11 days to complete deadline deals. GM’s can still talk and potentially make trades during that freeze, but wait to announce them after the freeze. But it also could change some GM’s minds and negate some potential trades. I would expect some deals to be made before February 8th and the Flames will likely be involved.
We know once the College season ends for guys like Gaudreau, Arnold, and Agostino, they will receive NHL contract offers from Brian Burke and the Flames. Especially Gaudreau (if he signs), will bring some excitement to a fan base that will need something to cheer about.
Let’s take a look at names that may be leaving the Flames and where they may go:
Cammalleri- Cammy will likely be one of the bigger name guys available prior to the trade deadline. We have seen media guys like Dennis Bernstein from LA Kings mention Cammalleri being a possible target for the Kings. Also, Sam Carchidi, a beat writer for the Flyers, has hinted that the Flyers could be a nice fit for the scoring winger out of Calgary. Some also have suggested New Jersey may inquire and try to land Cammalleri. I would also suggest to you, that teams such as Pittsburgh, Detroit, and Ottawa can use Cammalleri, and work out a deal with the Flames that would make sense for both sides.
Backlund- Earlier in the year we kept hearing about Backlund being on the block. Since then Backlund has raised his game and became a very reliable center that plays strong in both ends of the ice. With his value now being higher than earlier in the season, could Burke capitalize and get a good return? Teams like Carolina have been interested in the young Swede. He could also fit nicely in Toronto and Washington.
Stajan- Matt Stajan is showing heart and desire. But the points are not there. In a contract year he is definitely playing for a new deal, wherever it may end up being. His shooting percentage is respectable but the issue is that he does not shoot the puck. Stajan currently averages 0.945 shots per game. A team like Tampa or Detroit may feel Stajan and Stempniak to be nice depth guys going into the playoffs. The Penguins may also see Stempniak as a fit to provide some much needed help to their third line.
Chris Butler- Oh Butler… the last year and some have not been pretty. Forced to play in a role and minutes that are far beyond how he should be used. I think Butler would be a nice fit as #5 or #6 D-man on a deep team playing around 12-14 minutes a game. Boston comes to mind as a team that could be adding a defenseman. Around the deadline every year, teams overpay for defenseman (Doug Murray for example). I am not saying Butler could fetch the Flames two second round picks but he is a moveable piece, especially at the trade deadline. Depth at defence is essential when you are heading into the playoffs. Burke wants to get meaner and bigger on the back end. Having Butler, Brodie, Smith & Russell moving forward is too much of the opposite. It will not shock me to see two of those four guys be moved this season.
The Flames currently have $21.747 million in cap space. At the deadline they can add $50 million worth of pro-rated salary cap if they want.

As per Burke, Feaster being fired symbolizes speeding up of the rebuild. I can only assume, but I have a feeling the trades the Flames do make, may not be just player for draft picks. Burke may add some actual bodies and salary that he can use moving forward. 

11 comments:

  1. They better not trade Brodie. I will be pissed. Glencross will be traded, you didn't mention him.

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  2. Hey Trevor, I do not see Glencross being traded. with all the injuries I see him being traded next season when his value rebounds. On the Brodie front...I have been less than impressed with his play all season, he has not taken that next step. If a team is willing to pay the price to land Brodie, I would make that trade.

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  3. I Sincerely hope that Burke will use his history and relationships built to go out and fetch a RELIABLE goaltender. He wants the team to be bigger - great. Truculent - great. without a good goalie this is all a waste. Hopefully not an old guy, a known up and comer. Selfishly I still hope that McGrattan stays. I love having the toughest kid in school on my team. Call me Canadian....

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  4. I agree we need a goaltender. A guy like Cam Ward or James Reimer may be targeted in the off season by Burke. Hiller another guy to keep your eye on.

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    1. Hiller? Thanks, like I'm going to sleep now....

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  5. IMHO: 5 untouchables : Monahan, Gio, Colbourne, Brodie, Hudler (Hudler because Monahan needs a skilled winger to learn/excel with)
    Players I would keep: Russell, Smid, McGrattan, Bouma - character players. Keep goalies unless high return is available. Hat

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    1. I worry that Hudler is arguably more valuable than Cammy. Decent contract, produces and can fit any team. Burke could move him for a decent return.

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    2. I am a firm believer in "most" young players only excel if they are surrounded by elite players. That was/is one of Edmonton's problems. Hudler is the only elite in terms of skill on this team. He is too important to trade.

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    3. I do not disagree. I hope he stays but I can see why Burke would make him available.

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  6. Burke will try to make a big BIG trade. Ryan Miller and Evander Kane are two guys he is going after. If you expect to draft top 3 this coming draft... don't count on it. He will trade that pick.

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    1. With the recent coaching change in Winnipeg, I think Kane will not be available for a trade. Ryan Miller is interesting but because he is a UFA at season's end a rebuilding team should not give up assets to land a guy who could walk at the end of the year.

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