July 17 2014 08:51PM
In this series we've already noted the Flames need to up their functional toughness and improve their blueline depth behind Mark Giordano and TJ Brodie in order to climb out of the Western Conference basement. This final part is more focused on the "when" than the "how". Although I'm sure the team's executives and fans would prefer sooner rather than later, the more realistic deadline for the club to be a threat again is two seasons from now: 2016-17.
Relative to some other rebuilds we've been witness to (ahem, Oilers), 2016 is a fairly aggressive and optimistic expectation. But it's grounded in reality.
July 09 2014 11:30AM
It only took three signings for Brad Treliving to accomplish his primary goal this summer - get over the NHL's salary floor. That seems like an entirely trivial and underwhelming objective to celebrate, but it's one that had the possibility of causing all sorts of self inflicted wounds. Take, for example, Dale Tallon's orgy of spending from a few summers ago when he signed half of the league's mediocre UFA's to long, bloated contracts. The Flames, conversely, escaped relatively intact. None of the deals were longer than three years and or for a dollar amount that may hamper them in the future. Mission accomplished.
So is there anything left for the club to do this summer?
July 01 2014 01:30PM
After a couple of solid signings in Raymond and Hiller, the Flames add their first eyebrow raiser in Dereyk Engelland for 3 years at $2.9M per year.
July 01 2014 11:52AM
The Flames were very vocal about the need to add another NHL goalie heading into free agency and they managed to get one of the better options in former Duck Jonas Hiller.
July 01 2014 10:06AM
The Flames are entering the free agent season with the most cap room in the organization's tenure in the cap era. As a result, the Flames have probably the most flexibility for rookie GM Brad Treliving ever - at least from a budgeting perspective.
The club needs to spend more than $10M in cap space just to make the cap floor. On the other hand, they have over $25M if they decide to spend to the ceiling. They can pursue every big whale in the UFA pool if they so choose or they can decide to be as low risk and frugal as possible. And everything in between.
Here's three ways things may go down for the Flames this summer...