So, the NHL unveiled their plans for the Heritage Classic at McMahon Stadium on Wednesday afternoon, an event we will get into later on this week at FlamesNation. The Calgary Flames used Curtis Glencross, Cory Sarich and Steve Staios as their faces at McMahon, which I thought was slightly amusing. Two of those names (Staios and Sarich) have been extremely popular names this summer when it comes to where the Flames could trim salary…maybe it is wishful thinking?
I know our own Kent has been one who’s been in favor of finding a way to get the $2.7 million owed to Staios off of Calgary’s cap for this season, most likely by burying him in the American Hockey League. Others have been in favour of trading or doing the same with Sarich, who will count $3.6 million against the cap this season. So what do we make of them being two of the public faces of such a special event on Wednesday afternoon?
Well, probably not a whole lot to be honest. Could we really squint to read between the lines, and say they must be in the plans if they were on hand? Well, I guess we could…but I’ve always been of the opinion that both Sarich and Staios will be regular members of Calgary’s blueline for the upcoming year. That’s not because I think it would be the smartest or best thing for the team going forward, but more because that’s the feeling I get from being around the decision makers over the last number of months.
Darryl Sutter sent a younger defencemen, along with a draft pick to Edmonton to acquire Staios. Regardless of what we think about Sutter’s future planning ability as of late, with this particular move, I really think Darryl felt Staios was a good addition to his team for the remainder of his contract. Do I agree in that thinking? Well, no I don’t at all, but I really do believe Sutter wants him here, which is why I just don’t see him making the move to demote Staios. The fact that Steve was the man to put on the vintage sweater on Wednesday, to me, is immaterial. Although I do like the sweaters…but that’s for another time, as I know many don’t!
I’m a little less convinced on the Sarich front, but I still think there’s a good chance he’s on Calgary’s blueline come opening night. We all know it won’t be easy to move the guy via trade, so I think we can throw that out. Yes…Sarich for a fourth rounder would be GREAT…but who’s doing that at this point? The minors are an option, at least from the outside, but no one can be sure whether Calgary ownership would be willing to pay Sarich’s type of money in the AHL. Knowing that Darryl is a fan of the guy, I’m not counting on Sarich going anywhere.
Obviously, this is just one opinion and one train of thought, but it might be tough for a guy like Matt Pelech to crack this roster. It might take a trade involving someone like Robyn Regehr, which Kent wrote on earlier, and which I don’t think anyone can rule out at this point. But, regardless of their appearance at McMahon Stadium on Wednesday, I think both Sarich and Staios are members of the Calgary Flames this season.