We’re 40 games into the 2014-15 Calgary Flames season, which means we’re getting close to (a) the All-Star Break and, before you know it, (b) the NHL’s trade deadline on March 2 (at 1pm MT). This means that the Calgary Flames continue to burn through their schedule and, potentially, could have some hard questions as they remain near the playoff pack with increasingly fewer games remaining on the docket.
The prospect of important pieces being moved at some point in the near future leads to this week’s question: Who is part of Calgary’s “core”?
A few players are pretty evident: Sean Monahan, Johnny Gaudreau, T.J. Brodie and Mark Giordano are all core players. I’d make an argument for Jiri Hudler, but I bet the Flames would trade him if they got a really good deal offered. You can argue that Curtis Glencross, Kris Russell and/or Matt Stajan are also on the periphery of the core, but would likely be moved if an offer came in.
Heck, Glencross might be moved this year as a pending unrestricted free agent.
Lance Bouma and Joe Colborne may also be considered core guys, depending on how you stretch the definition.
But for my definition, the absolute guts and heart and brain of the franchise, the essential pieces, I’d go for the main five: Monahan, Gaudreau, Brodie, Giordano and Hudler. Who’s in yours?