After playing just four games with the Calgary Flames, forward Freddy Modin has announced his retirement after 14 seasons in the NHL. Acquired at the trade deadline from the Atlanta Thrashers, Modin contributed next to nothing in his short time. I said at the time the deal was rather risk free, involving a seventh round selection, but even with the low price paid, the trade ends up not working out at all for the Flames.
I won’t back too far off my sentiments at the time, which were basically a "risk free depth move" for a team trying to continue a push and make the playoffs, rolling on from an incredible run started in January. Sure, some seventh round picks turn into Joe Pavelski, but that would be very much the departure from the norm. So, in theory, a player of Modin’s stature made sense…a veteran who had been to the playoffs and who could theoretically step in as a 13th forward and fill a small role if needed.
Now, that didn’t pan out, or anywhere close to it. In the short amount of time Modin did see, he was ineffective at best and a detriment far too often. He had played 36 games already that season, putting up 10 points with the Thrashers, so from a merit standpoint, it was a little shocking to see him struggle on the ice like he did. Until you realized injury issues were part of the picture.
That’s where the criticism begins, as many wonder if Jay Feaster did proper due dilligence in fleshing out Modin’s injury past before giving up an asset, albeit a small one. I, for one, take Feaster at face value and believe that proper channels were explored before finalizing this deal, and it just so happens the team ran into a little bit of bad luck with this specific player. That said, the questions are fair ones to ask, because in hindsight, a seventh round pick for a guy who played four games is still poor return.