Hesitant Suggestions: Stajan for Gomez?



If you missed it yesterday, make sure to check out Cam Charron’s article on Scott Gomez and why the Canadiens most expensive forward is probably better than you think.

Brief summary: Gomez drives the play north. The Canadiens have the puck more when he plays and they tend to win more. His lack of goal scoring coupled with his outrageous cap hit stains his public perception, but the truth is he makes the team better.

Cam’s analysis made me wonder if there is any way the Flames might get their hands on Gomez. His cap hit is certainly a problem, but his skill set is something the team currently lacks and desperately requires: the ability to drive possession at ES. As anyone who has watched the Flames the last month or two can attest, Calgary doesn’t spend enough time in the offensive at 5on5 these days. Adding Gomez at center would help tilt the ice.

The $7M cap hit represents both an obstacle and an opportunity: the former, because Gomez is obviously overpaid at that price and would eat up a huge chunk of cap space. The latter because it is the reason he would be available at all.

Obviously Gomez at half rpice would be far more preferable. At some point the Canadiens might choose to do the waivers/re-entry thing with Scott if they feel the cap space would be better spent elsewhere, but there’s another way the Flames might be able to figuratively cut the cap hit "in half".

Trade Stajan for Gomez. Darryl Sutter’s folly has two years left on his contract at 3.5M (cap hit) per season. Absent a buy-out or demotion, the Flames are probably stuck with that deal. Unless, of course, they move him for another "problem" contract like Gomez. 

Sather’s misstep also only has two years left. Gomez’s cap hit is $7.35M, but the real dollars drop to 5.5M and 4.5M starting next season so the actual financial commitment isn’t as quite as intimidating.

The difference between Gomez and Stajan in terms of cap space is $3.85M. That would be the net addition and "true" cap hit for the Flames if they somehow made this trade, assuming no other parts are involved. Considered from that perspective, it’s not as insane a proposition as it seems on it’s face.

Of course, this is all speculation on my part. It’s possible the Canadiens have no interest in trading Gomez at all, or at least not for an expensive spare part like Stajan. There is also obvious other risks to adding a 31-year old with a huge contract and an apparent inability to put the puck in the ocean. I think it’s an idea worth considering nonetheless.

Something to think about during the festivities this weekend. If the Flames want to remain competitive during this transitory period, they’ll need to start getting creative.

    • everton fc


      “I don’t think we should free up anymore cap space for Montreal and worsen our cap situation for another “what if?” situation. If Gomez is such a driving forward he should have the talent to put up points regardless of his line-mates or whatever excuse you could conjure up for him.”


      I say either demote Stajan and see what happens on re-entry… Try and mvoe him for something like a 5th round pick… Or, of these two options fail, buyout at the end of the season. Why would we think Gomez would produce fruits here, when many players like him have come here and died on the vine (see Stajan… Amonte… Friesen… et al…) Gomez is 31. Could he be washed up? Perhaps…

  • Ken V.

    I don’t think we should free up anymore cap space for Montreal and worsen our cap situation for another “what if?” situation. If Gomez is such a driving forward he should have the talent to put up points regardless of his line-mates or whatever excuse you could conjure up for him. An absolute no to this trade suggestion. I too thought Kent was drinking at the time he wrote this article!

  • Mitch2

    The only other bad part of a Stajan for Gomez trade is the average fan backlash would dwarf the Joker situation too.

    Strap down for massive mockery from the entire NHL’s fan base…

    Only Darryl Sutter would have had the balls to pull off a trade like this.

  • RexLibris

    No. Stajan’s real dollar hit drops to 2.5 million next season for two more years despite the 3.5 million dollar cap hit.

    That gives us options. Perhaps a trade. Ownership has shown willingness to park that much in the AHL. Re-entry waivers is another options. There could also be a penalty free buy-out as part of the next CBA.

    I was willing to risk it going into this season. But so far Gomez is showing that last season wasn’t an anomaly and the value of getting rid of Stajan is reduced.

  • RKD

    My initial cognition of the petition that you put forth is why would anyone value a stuffed toy called a “Gomez” at 7 million dollars? And how could you possibly trade it for a hockey player?

    This blog has fallen off the tracks and picked up steam to nowhere land. Maybe I’ll join your dream world and consider trading my Rubber ducky for a trip to Jamaica and get some of that good smoke you’re inhaling. _BV

  • Ken V.

    We would be much, much wiser to pursue Jeff Carter than Gomez. Even if it takes losing a prospect, this guy will come in here and produce so being open to losing a future asset is a must in this instance.

  • Also, who is to say Jeff Carter would come to Calgary? He was upset about leaving his party bros in Philly, who’s to say he wants to come to Calgary?

    I guess Feaster could just drive a dump truck full of cocaine and several crates of Miller Lite up to Carter’s house and woo him that way.

  • RKD

    I would not take Gomez at 7 million, if and when Montreal puts him on waivers is anyone’s guess. I think at half the price and a change of scenery might be good for him.

    If Montreal takes Stajan that will be the final nail in the coffin for Gauthier.

  • Captain Ron

    The first thing that comes to mind here is why would the Flames who have trouble scoring goals on a good day want a guy who hasn’t scored in nearly a year. Is it ridiculous enough that it actually might happen? Talk about river boat gambling. With that said after reading both Kent and Cams articles maybe it bears some real discussion.

    Even if we were to lose Stajan in the deal we would be bringing back an even greater overpay on a contract. The successful and contending teams seem to have guys like this playing for half the money he gets and they produce better results. In 19 games Gomez has 7 assists and is a minus 3. He’s basically the only guy on the team without a goal. The 7.3 mill cap hit is stupidly high for him.

    I know the stats may tell a good story but I see snake oil salesman all over it. The deal would have to be very sweet in our favor to be willing to take Gomez on. Considering whats been in the pressbox this last year Stajans $$$ doesn’t seem that big a deal.

    I vote no on this one unless they make us an offer we can’t refuse.

    • Captain Ron

      Thats why I say, if we can extract Subban out of them in a Gomez deal, then its worth it.
      But something very nice needs to come back with that package. If Kotalik = giving a 2nd for 1 year at 3.0Mill then Gomez should be at least a 1st rounder.

  • Captain Ron

    This trade makes no sense in my view, particular from a long-term team building perspective and salary cap perspective. It would only work if Calgary and Montreal, in particular, are willing to trade other big assets.

    Here is why it doesn’t make sense: Firstly, although Gomez would help Calgary at centre as he could help Calgary score off the rush, Calgary really would have to make him their number 1 or 2 centre. In this case, I’d rather resign Jokinen as Calgary’s number 2 centre and give Backlund a chance at the number 1 spot. Secondly, if Calgary was indeed able to get Montreal to take Stajan, they would still need Montreal to take more bad salary from Calgary and this would be hard even if they took Babchuk. Calgary should not be trading expiring contracts for long-term contracts.

    The only way a Gomez for Stajan could go down is if Montreal was willing to trade Gomez along with another valuable asset such as P.K. Subban (who will move into RFA status in another year) or Alex Emelin and Montreal took Bouwmeester’s hefty US$6.8mn contract, which expires at same time as Gomez’s contract. This would also give Calgary the flexibility to either trade Jokinen for a high draft pick (which I strongly recommend as he has an expiring contract) or resign him and thus have Gomez, Backlund and Jokinen fight for top two centre minutes. The latter scenario would be acceptable as Calgary has no young talent other than Backlund with top two centre potential in the organization.

    Montreal is unlikely to make this deal because they have too much money tied up in Markov and Kaberle and thus could only take Bouwmeester’s contract if Kaberle was traded and Markov came back to play and could quarterback the powerplay. Montreal’s cap situation is just as bad as Calgary’s as they have way too money tied up in Gionta, Plekanec, Kaberle, Cole and Bourque (hahaha). Although I must admit that Montreal fans are probably thinking Gauthier fleeced Feaster by having Calgary take on Cammalleri’s US$6.0mn contract and they could be right (way too early to tell).

    The reality is I doubt Montreal and Calgary dance again. Frankly, I don’t think Calgary is in any position to take another large contract like Gomez or worse yet Jeff Carter’s. No general manager in their right mind should be trading for a 10-year contract particularly at Carter’s age. Holmgren completely fleeced Columbus on that one.

    However, I must confess Calgary has a win now mentality with Iggy still around, so I guess we should still expect the unexpected.

    Apologies for the lengthy post.

  • Captain Ron

    …i get the logic of this idea. however, two more years after this season at 7.5 million cap hit is one too many. if there was only one more year it would be a legit good idea.

  • Franko J

    Gomez 4 seasons ago would have been worth trading for. However, I think the Flames would be better off continuing to develop younger and cheaper players like Horak and Backlund.
    As for Stajan, the contract alone is very hard to move, therefore, Calgary would probably try to move that contract in the summer.

    Jeff Carter – What has he accomplished?
    IMO didn’t Calgary just trade an overwhelmingly underacheiving player? Why would they trade for the same thing again?