Flames acquire, sign Wideman; re-sign Comeau

Ryan Pike
June 27 2012 01:24PM

 

 

In their first "big" moves of the summer, the Calgary Flames announced on Wednesday afternoon that the club has acquired pending unrestricted free agent defenseman Dennis Wideman. Headed to the Washington Capitals in return are blueliner Jordan Henry (himself a pending UFA) and a fifth round pick in 2013.

The Flames also announced that Wideman has been signed to a five-year contract worth $5.25 million per year. Sportsnet 960 The Fan's Pat Steinberg is reporting that the deal also includes a full no movement clause.

A native of Kitchener, Ontario, the 29-year-old Wideman had a strong season with the Capitals, posting 11 goals and 46 points. In 535 career NHL games with St. Louis, Boston, Florida and Washington, Wideman has 251 points.

He immediately becomes the highest paid Flames blueliner not named Jay Bouwmeester. Based on the amount of money being spent on Wideman, Bouwmeester, Mark Giordano and Anton Babchuk, this perhaps adds fuel to the fire of the Bouwmeester trade rumours.

The Flames have ALSO re-signed winger Blake Comeau to a one-year, $1.25 million contract.

UPDATE: Notes from the Feaster media availability:

-Flames were at 50 contracts prior to the Wideman signing, so they got the Capitals to take back an expiring UFA contract to get the deal done. No further deals are necessarily coming, as the Flames can fit under the cap with their many defenders, but Feaster noted that he's willing to discuss any deal that'll make his team better.

-Comeau was offered a two-year deal, but turned it down in favour of a single year term. He wants to prove that last year's under-performance was a fluke and that his 20+ goal campaign was not.

-The Flames are looking to add a top-six forward and possibly bottom-six guys that make the team more difficult to play against. Not necessarily guys that are "boxers," but guys who finish checks and make teams work hard to get points out of Calgary.

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Now in his third full season covering the Calgary Flames and the NHL, Ryan Pike is a Calgary native and FlamesNation's managing editor. He's trying to keep his head up, his stick on the ice and is giving it 110% every shift. You can also find his work at The Hockey Writers, the Wrestling Observer and Tough Talk MMA.
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#51 jeremywilhelm
June 27 2012, 02:02PM
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The speed at which he signed though makes me think we coulda paid him less....

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#52 Charleston Kingsley
June 27 2012, 02:03PM
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Well, our top four now looks a lot better at the moment assuming we keep Bouwmeester which we might as well. I think he will rebound this year and perform better with an offensive minded coach. It's refreshing to say that we actually have a #2 defenceman now although Butler performed admirably in that role he's a #4 in my books. Wideman has put up some solid #s in the past and should give a boost to our PP.

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#53 thymebalm
June 27 2012, 02:10PM
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I came over here from calgarypuck hoping to find some educated hockey talk, but's its all reactionary over here too.

5th rounder for Wideman, who immediately makes the d-corps better.

That's easy.

Contract length: he STILL won't be veteran status (+35) after this contract. Just because he's been around the league a long time doesn't mean he's old.

$ amount: dictated by the market and totally reasonable considering past performance and output. Don't forget that the cap is 70.2M this year.

Wake up Flames fans! We just added and free agency hasn't even started yet.

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#54 suba steve
June 27 2012, 02:11PM
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Another win for Feaster, imo. If the guy can somehow nail down a decent #1 C, then playoffs could be a possibility? Not sure if that is good, but it is what it is. I'm agreeing with the consensus that dealing JBo may not be prudent now?

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#55 Vowswithin
June 27 2012, 02:12PM
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@thymebalm

Now all we need to do is add one Doan and one Schultz ;-) and were looking a whole lot nicer then last year

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#56 flamesburn89
June 27 2012, 02:13PM
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Flames needed another top 4 defenceman, now they've got one. They didn't give up a whole lot, so count me in favour of the signing. Sure, the term is quite long and the cap hit is substantial, but the Flames got a good defenceman for next to nothing whose a guy who should be able to quarterback the powerplay. Also, the Flames can now feel comfortable that Babchuk doesn't have to play top 4 minutes anytime soon, because that would have been a disaster.

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#57 Emir
June 27 2012, 02:16PM
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Thanks for the info guys!

I wasnt sure how to feel about the deal. I guess i'm not 100% sure. The money and length are open market in my mind. I dont think its a deal that i'm going to be excited over, i'm happy to have the player. I'll reserve judgement later in the year.

Now with 8 D men I don't really see us trading one. Lots of JBo rumours but who knows. Id rather see him stay.

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#58 Emir
June 27 2012, 02:18PM
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And one thing i'll say, i'm worried that his points will drop being here in calgary. Then the effigies and protests begin. So lets all have that in mind right now, expect 30-35 points.

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#59 Sincity1976
June 27 2012, 02:18PM
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With the cap raising this is the going rate now for free agents. We saw it last year. We will see it this year. Your either inactive or you pay the price.

I don't like the contract. But we weren't signing a player like Wideman for less.

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#60 Emir
June 27 2012, 02:18PM
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@Sincity1976

agreed. I guess we can argue its a win that we didn't over pay

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#61 BurningSensation
June 27 2012, 02:19PM
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This deal is awesome (we land a top 3 D-man for a 5th rnd pick and an expiring minorr league prospect).

If J-Bo is in fact dealt away we can judge that trade when it happens and on it's merits.

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#62 Kent Wilson
June 27 2012, 02:19PM
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Wideman's an okay top-4 option. He's decent offensively and can keep his head above water at ES against top-6 guys, although it's not like he excels defensively. More info on that today.

$5M+ over 5 years though? That makes me nervous as hell.

Comeau deal is a good one though. Absolutely no complaints there.

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#63 FireOnIce
June 27 2012, 02:24PM
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Instead of being a sign that JBo WILL be traded, I think this is in fact a sign that Justin Schultz won't be playing in Calgary next year. He starts poking around Edmonton and Vancouver, and all of a sudden the Flames (who were going after Schultz) trade for a different D-man and sign him immediately. I think Calgary is done as far as the Schultz sweepstakes... and the one for Parise, and Suter, and Bobby Ryan.

I'd say if we could parlay a prospect and pick or a player into something useful, like say a top six forward, we might squeak into 8th place. Then get swept by LA or St Louis.

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#64 Ales Hallsky
June 27 2012, 02:33PM
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Oilers vs. Flames banter aside, Justin Azevedo, are you the same AHL Justin Azevedo i just picked up in NHL12?

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#65 RKD
June 27 2012, 02:34PM
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I'm now hearing possible destinations for Jay-Bo include St. Louis and Detroit. I still believe it will be tough for Calgary to move Jay-Bo with that cap hit plus he has a NTC.

Feaster sure likes 5 year deals, first Tanguay and now Wideman.

It's obvious the Flames are still in the same old philosophy of being competitive now as opposed to down the road. Wideman might help us squeak into eighth place.

I'm more concerned about the forwards, Baertschi is still developing and Cervenka hasn't played a lick in the NHL and Jokinen's status remains unclear.

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#66 OptimusFlame
June 27 2012, 02:39PM
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Tanguay/Cammy/Iggy GlenX/Cervenka/??? Sven/Backlund/Comeau Bouma/Jones/Jackman

J-Bo/Wideman Gio/Butler Brodie/Smith

Not a bad line-up. Couple moves to come I hope. We need a 2nd line RW unless Stajan steps it up and Backs can handle the 2nd line duties. That would allow Cervenka to centre the top line and Cammy can slide into the RW spot on the 2nd. As you can see though I would prefer Stajan get traded or waived and buried in the minors. Maybe Reinhart is able to stick in training camp too. Question is, if Sven proves to be too good for the 3rd line...what do you do with tangs?

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#67 MangoTanker
June 27 2012, 02:43PM
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After having time to think about this move, I'm kinda scared. This was the off-season that the FLames were supposed to have alot of cap space, which increased the risk of overpaying. I feel like that's exactly what they did right now.

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#68 jeremywilhelm
June 27 2012, 02:47PM
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Schultz was never signing in Calgary.

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#69 Chris
June 27 2012, 02:48PM
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Relax everyone, we are at the same spot we were at at the end of the season. Sarich was getting 3.3 and Comeau was getting 2.5 Total was 5.8. Now Wideman is getting 5.25 and Comeau is getting 1.25 total is 6.5. So I dont really see the problem and at least now we have some help on the blue-line and on the power play.

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#70 Arik
June 27 2012, 02:51PM
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@suba steve

where the hell is that consensus?

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#71 jeremywilhelm
June 27 2012, 02:55PM
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Yeah, there is no consensus to not trade bouwmeester except within the Flamesnation family. And I definitely think they need to keep Bouwmeester.

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#72 15w40
June 27 2012, 02:56PM
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Jay Feaster must have got into the bath salt. If Wideman is worth 5.25 then what is Shea Weber worth.....10?? This contract is going to pan out worse than Bouwmeester. If you are going to blow your wad on that, then why don't you go in hard after Shane Doan? Maybe they are. I think you are further ahead playing out the Bouwmeester contract and letting the Brodie kid get more prime PP time. The Hemsky contract was a little iffy at 2 years, 5 years at a big overpay I say in this case.

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#73 jeremywilhelm
June 27 2012, 03:02PM
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Wait, you WANT Stewart? We just traded his moronic clone to Montreal this season.

No thanks.

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#74 FireOnIce
June 27 2012, 03:07PM
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@ JW

Agreed re: Chris Stewart. He was up and down between the NHL and AHL for a terrible Avs team, and then stuck and got 30 goals. Not bad. But the dude couldn't decide whether he's a goon or a scorer, and ended up breaking his hand in a fight (my roommate called the broken hand as the fight ended). Now, he's neither a goon, nor a scorer. He's just never been the same since his broken hand. No thanks.

Perron or D'Agostini as the 2nd line RW wouldn't be half bad.

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#75 ALL THE WAY IN
June 27 2012, 03:16PM
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This probably is an open market deal in terms of money and length, but the opportunity to give him a hard sell was worth the 5th rounder. On the open market he would have a lot of options and might've overlooked Calgary even if the money were the same. This sends a good message to the other free agents that Calgary is actively trying to get better and that they're always trying to be more competitive. Always interesting to be a flames fan.

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#76 MC Hockey
June 27 2012, 05:01PM
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Yes, time to recalibrate is what I was thinking too. The salary cap is 70.4M for next year (tentatively) so Wideman's 5.25M is only 7.4% of the cap for a strong player. In other words "No worries mate"

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#77 suba steve
June 27 2012, 05:02PM
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DieHard

Capgeek has them at 30% of the cap on 7 D-men (JBo, Wideman, Gio, Babs, Buts, Smith, Brodie). Is that OK?

21216666/70200000=30.22%

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#78 MC Hockey
June 27 2012, 05:03PM
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@ xsice: I also agree. Flames need to have a top 4 right-handed shooting D-man and have him and his early signing makes the Flames look attractive. Parise! Parise! (more like Doan! Doan!)

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#79 Vowswithin
June 27 2012, 05:08PM
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So we now know it includes a NMC yay...

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#80 DieHard
June 27 2012, 05:17PM
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suba steve wrote:

DieHard

Capgeek has them at 30% of the cap on 7 D-men (JBo, Wideman, Gio, Babs, Buts, Smith, Brodie). Is that OK?

21216666/70200000=30.22%

30% for 7 D is OK. Seems a little steep for 4 though is all I was saying.

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#81 Colin
June 27 2012, 06:30PM
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It's a lot easier to find competent forwards to play on your 4th line for minimum to less than 1m. It's a lot harder to find/retain/sign good defenders. 30% is okay to spend on your defence, as well we are spending close to 10% on goaltending, so that leaves 60% on forwards which seems like a decent enough mix. There is no one magic formula for what you should bee spending, just gotta fix and fill holes, and a top 4 d man was a need and a hole. It got fixed and we still have cap room to fill another hole/need in the top 6.

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#82 Artax
June 27 2012, 07:01PM
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Could you imagine how many retaliatory penalties we'd take with Glencross and Doan on the same line? that'd be great. Doan's got a dark side to him.

If we aren't going to bring back Stempniak, were really gonna need a right winger, people say were weak on down the middle...how about the right wing.

Maybe take a chance on Jagr for Jokkinen and a 1st/2nd round pick. Just for a 1 year deal.

I hope Baertschi can step it up this year and play with Cammy and Iggy on the 1st line. I think Tanguay - Cervenka - Driver X(Jagr) would be fun. And the bottom guys can comprise all the Jones/backlund/Comeau/Jackman/Bouma/Aliu.

I think the Flames will either move Boumeester/Babchuck. I'd like to see a spot made for Wilson myself.

Defence I'd have Wideman - Bou, Gio-Wilson/Brodie, Butler - Wilson/Butler.

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#83 SmellOfVictory
June 27 2012, 07:44PM
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To quote myself when I read the AAV on that contract: "WHAT the F***? J**** f***ing C****."

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#84 clyde
June 27 2012, 10:11PM
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Pittsburgh is one very good d man away and have cleared cap space. If they do not get anyone, J-Bo for some nice pieces may be an option starting with Despres and Kennedy and perhaps a draft choice . J-Bo would give the Penguins what they need and we would do well too.

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