Brian Burke didn’t really waste any time getting into his new-ish role, as the Flames announced during Tuesday night’s game that the club has signed 2013 first round pick Morgan Klimchuk to a contract.
Klimchuk’s deal is for three years and an annual cap hit of $925,000. Because he signed during his 18-year-old year, his contract is eligible to "slide" twice (this season and next season) if he doesn’t play 10 NHL games. Picked 28th overall in the latest Entry Draft, Klimchuk is the second Flames pick (after Sean Monahan) to sign on the dotted line.
In terms of signing prospects, the Klimchuk deal is basically the first domino in a series of dominoes that are going to fall in the next few months.
Three 2012 draft picks need to be signed by June 1, 2014: Vancouver Giants defenseman Brett Kulak, Quebec Remparts captain Ryan Culkin, and Swift Current Broncos forward Coda Gordon. With Kenny Agostino of Yale and Bill Arnold of Boston College graduating following this season, the Flames have until August 15, 2014 to sign them. If either Johnny Gaudreau or Jon Gillies could be cajoled to join the professional ranks and decide to leave school, presumably the August 15 deadline would apply to them, as well.
And there’s a small matter of Emile Poirier, the CBA and the "slide rule." (Stick-tap to sureloss at CalgaryPuck for initially pointing this out).
According to Article 9, Section 1, Subsection D of the CBA: (emphasis added)…
In the event that an 18 year old or 19 year old Player signs an SPC with a Club but does not play at least ten (10) NHL Games in the first season under that SPC, the term of his SPC and his number of years in the Entry Level System shall be extended for a period of one (1) year, except that this automatic extension will not apply to a Player who is 19 according to Section 9.2 by virtue of turning 20 between September 16 and December 31 in the year in which he first signs an SPC. Unless a Player and Club expressly agree to the contrary, in the event a Player’s SPC is extended an additional year in accordance with this subsection, all terms of the SPC, with the exception of Signing Bonuses, but including Paragraph 1 Salary, games played bonuses and Exhibit 5 bonuses, shall be extended; provided, however, that the Player’s Paragraph 1 Salary shall be extended in all circumstances.
Emile Poirier turned 19 on December 14. Which means, according to how the CBA calculates ages, 2013 is his 19-year-old year. If he signs an entry-level contract in 2014, that deal is signed in his 20-year-old year…and doesn’t slide. And considering next season he’ll be in a similar position as Ryan Culkin was this year (eligible to play in the NHL, AHL or QMJHL), the Flames would probably like to retain some flexibility.
In other words, expect something to possibly be announced in the near future regarding Emile Poirier, because it’s not likely that the Flames are unaware of these circumstances.