Flames Brass Facing Risk Management Decisions

They’re not quite there yet, but the Calgary Flames are heading toward a pivotal point in this confounding season.

During a well-publicized rebuilding phase that officially started with
the unloading of former captain Jarome Iginla less than two years ago,
the Flames are actually in contention for a playoff spot.

They woke up Sunday
morning in a wild-card spot — a position no sane person expected them
to be in this season — in a tie with defending champion Los Angeles Kings but owning more wins in regulation. It appears to put the Flames
in a precarious spot with their strategic direction. Do they hold onto
their biggest trade chip and risk another Michael Cammalleri situation
with Curtis Glencross? Do they deal him away and fill his slot with one
of the many up-and-comers on the farm but face potential scrutiny for
appearing to throw in the towel on the postseason?

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Additionally, do they look to dump David Jones and/or Jiri Hudler, who each have one more season on their $4-million deals?

Any of those hypothetical moves could be interpreted as an indication of
indifference when it comes to this year’s playoffs. But the Flames
management team cares nothing of public perception. President of hockey
operations Brian Burke made that perfectly clear with the Cammalleri
sit-in last season.

Luckily, the team is probably in a win-win situation with what I believe
is a fairly obvious answer to the questions posed above.

Get what you can for Glencross. The a pending unrestricted free agent is
probably nowhere near as valuable as Cammalleri was a year ago based on
his injury history (including his current absence) and declining
offensive numbers.

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Bid goodbye to Jones and Dennis Wideman and, really, almost any of the
veteran players not named Mark Giordano who might fetch a return that
gives your scouting staff the opportunity to find another Johnny
Gaudreau or T.J. Brodie in the later rounds of a future draft.

The Flames need to move out players who are not part of the long-term
plans regardless of what the effects may result this season. The funny
thing is that a stronger finish to the season is possible with ‘the
replacements’ than with the status quo.

Youth drives this engine now. There are enough veterans in town to
influence the kids without worrying about losing the likes of Glencross,
Hudler or Jones. There may be the desire to bring Hudler back given his
skill level and production, even if it’s for just that one final year.

Glencross may be asking for too much money and term for a team that
wants to afford itself the luxury of flexibility, and Jones has upped
his trade stock with a recent hot streak but over the course of his time
in Calgary has done little to show he is deserving of being a part of
this team’s long-term future.

Michael Ferland looked ready for the NHL during his time with the Flames
earlier this season and could step right into Glencross’s spot. Centre
Markus Granlund could also move to a wing if needed. Emile Poirier is
performing extremely well in the American Hockey League and folks are
excited to see what he can do at the NHL level sooner than later.

It’s not giving up on the season, it’s giving the long-term players a
chance to take advantage of an unexpected situation and continue to
build the culture of a hockey team that does not consider losing
acceptable or automatic.

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It’s looking forward to seeing what these kids could become if given chances to grow in the most difficult competition possible.

It’s an easy call.

The hardest part might be convincing other teams that there’s decent
value in a player a team in a playoff position doesn’t want to keep.


  • Hudler’s proven that he was worth the gamble when they signed him to his contract. He’s been consistently good. I’d be really hesitant to let him go. That said, his trade value has never been higher.

    If you get an offer you can’t refuse, you take it, otherwise he looks like the right guy to play on a wing with Johnny while he’s in the process of establishing himself.

    I agree with everything else though. Glencross should be in new colours before the end of the season, and if you can find people who want Wideman and Jones, I say go for it.

    I’m still even a little bit hesitant to deal Wideman without a decent D option coming back in at least one deal, but hopefully the brass are aware how crippling their depth on defense is

  • everton fc

    Again, this fan wants to see an ELITE organization built. Not a “playoff contender that might go deep”. Not what we need. We need to be like the Wings, the Ducks, the Hawks… The Pens… What good is anything short of this, and we have the opportunity NOW to make this happen.

    Even discussing the movement of Hudler is a waste of time; he should be part of the ELITE rebuild. Moving Wideman’s nuts, as well. This guy can play as a 4-6 d-man and score for another 3-4 years. If he likes it here, you keep him. We have no cap issues. With youngsters we want to retain, this is where our “cap-ex” should go.

    Jones is one I’d try to move. Ditto Raymond. Engelland/Smid/Diaz – I actually think teams would take Smid as a throw in to a multi-player deal. He’s a serviceable 6-man.

    Byron’s another I might shop as part of a deal. And of course, with Ortio beginning to prove he’s ready as perhaps a #1, we have one goalie too many. Stajan becomes expendable once Bennett comes back, but maybe the “brass” wants to move Backlund? I think that’s nuts, too… But I’m not “the brass”.

    I have been one Ferland’s biggest fans since he was with the Wheaties. But he has to begin scoring on the farm. I wonder if he’s still shaking of that concussion? Poirier could replace a vet, as well. Granlund is another one who maybe worth more on the trade market, but I think moving him to wing needs to happen sooner, than later. Would Minny want Granlund on the wing with his brother centering? What would they give up for Ramo and Granlund, or even Hiller and Granlund? Could a young defender be “had”?? Our biggest area of opportunity is defence. Our biggest assets – goalies/centres/proven vets/over abundance of young forwards.

    And I agree with Walter White – Glencross has played well this year. Is he part of an ELITE rebuild? Maybe short term, for the right price.

    • Mort

      If you want the Flames to be an ELITE organization, why do you think Hudler will be part of that? Surely our elite era, if it ever comes, will be a few years (4-6?) from now. Do you really think Hudler will still be elite in that amount of time? Do you think he’s elite right now? He’s a good scorer, but elite is pushing it a bit far. If he’s elite right now, but not in 4 years, why not trade him now and get somebody with a brighter future?

      Same goes for Wideman. That guy is definitely not elite. Good second pairing guy, but he’ll be third pairing at best in 4 years from now.

      Also, why the HELL would you shop Byron? He’s one of the most underrated forwards we have! We should be signing him long-term at a reasonable price, not shipping him off.

      I like how you’d be fine with dealing Jones/Raymond/Engelland/Smid/Diaz. Basically everybody on our team who’s ineffective or underachieving. Yeah, we’d probably all be fine with shipping those guys, but do you really think we’re going to get any value in return?

      • Mort

        “If you want the Flames to be an ELITE organization, why do you think Hudler will be part of that? Surely our elite era, if it ever comes, will be a few years (4-6?) from now.”

        What makes you think it will take 4-6 years if ever?? They have good building blocks to be a top 8 NHL team next year.

        Sure Byron is a little speedster – how effective has he been in scoring goals and setting them up, especially against Murderer’s row in California?? Size matters; Poirier will make him obsolete anyways next year if not this year.

        If Wideman will be a third pairing guy in 4 years, he is better than what we have now there!

      • everton fc

        The Wings, in their elite years, had guys like Hudler and Wideman. We can get there in three years or less if we make the right moves.

        I never said Hudler or Wideman were elite players; I said they are the type of role players elite teams have and keep, guys they find room for. Like Maltby, Draper, Cleary… Others…

        I’d shop Byron because he wouldn’t impact the team if he were moved, and he has value. He’s peaked. That’s why. Packaged w/Hiller, for example, seems a good package.

        I’d not be fine dealing Jones. I like him. for now. And I never said any of Raymond/Engelland/Smid/Diaz would garner value. Which is why I didn’t mention them. No one’s taking Engelland unless he’s packaged. Ditto Smid, unless it’s for a 4th round or worse pick. Diaz is only with the big team because of prior time w/the coaching staff. He might even clear waivers, who knows. Raymond packaged has value. Just to clarify.

        We don’t need to make too many moves – that was my point. And as a team rebuilds towards elite status, you keep guys like Hudler and Wideman for that reason. Gio, as well. I know we are nowhere near where the Wings were at the same time, if that can even be measured. Everyone has an opinion. Mine is you don’t make too many changes for the sake of change.

        Guys that need to get a long look up here at some point – Baertschi, Poirier, Ferland, Wotherspoon, and maybe Wolf and Arnold. That’s some nice depth t forward. Not on defence. Guys like Yandle I’d go for, but only for spare change/parts/prospects, if possible. Hiller, to me, is our most valuable asset at the moment. Glencross has played well, but isn’t owed anything, and I also said the “brass” may not even want Glencross back. Just to confirm.

  • Burnward

    David Jones needs some love. He’s been playing hard with Mony, Bouma in that shutdown role.

    I’m not sure I make any huge moves. Glencross, Raymond or Hiller maybe. But there is something good going on now. I wouldn’t be too quick to mess with it.

    I would though split up Johnny and Hudler on the PP. That second unit needs a better distributor than Raymond up front.

    • everton fc

      I like Jones, too. And I agree – no big moves needed right now. If you can package Hiller with Raymond you try for a solid 3/4 d-man, or a young defencive prospect already in the league on a team with an over-abundance of these assets. Hiller will peak team’s interests. He’s got us this far, to be fair. Someone mentioned Nashville. Might be a good fit. I think Ramo is a solid #2 is we roll the dice w/Ortio, but we have to stay the course on “The Rebuild”.

      There was one shift along the boards he just lowered his shoulder and took total control of the puck. He might indeed be a guy you hold onto in an ELITE rebuild. Jones is a solid 3rd line player for most teams; even an ELITE team could use a guy like him. I’ve always thought if he stays healthy he can score 20 goals here.

        • everton fc

          Yep. With the right linemates, which I think he now has, why can’t he duplicate his #’s when with the Avs? That’s how I see it. No tot mention he’s a real good guy, a character guy, which is so, so important in an ELITE rebuild.

      • everton fc

        Jones and Wideman are part of an “ELITE” rebuild? Sorry, but I have to disagree.

        Also, I’m still confused as to how fans expect Baerstchi, Poirier, Ferland, Granlund, Shore and Bennett to all make the team next year without moving out vets. If the plan is to make them all play another year in the minors, fine, but a lot of posters on here seem to want it both ways.

        Myself, I’m all for letting guys develop at their own pace, but at least half of that list are already kicking the door in.

        I also tend to take the POV of BT that the Flames are still in an “acquisition” phase. One has to assume that certain players won’t pan out at the NHL level, that multiple players may be packaged in a trade or that some will eventually move on. In order to deal with that, a steady supply of picks and prospects need to be established. In order to do that, some vets need to be moved.

        I have a lot of respect for the Detroit development system, but right now Calgary is not where Detroit is. We haven’t rushed guys like the Oilers have, but the team also can’t afford to keep a guy like Poirier in the minors for 4 years either.

        Besides, as Steve points out, Calgary can afford to move out vets and not suddenly be without any. The team would still have key vets in keys spots and a guy like Monahan will be a 3rd year vet next season so again, the team is not looking at an Oiler-like scenario here.

        As for Glencross being ‘owed’ anything. This is the same sort of argument used to keep Iginla around way past his expiry date…..and look what the return was.

        Glencross wanted a NTC and to stay close to home. He got that. In order to get that, he had to give up money. That’s called bargaining. That’s called life. The team doesn’t suddenly owe him bags of money.

        Besides, the team has to do what’s best for the team, not for one playerwho regrets signing his last contract despite getting exactly what he asked for.

  • Burnward

    This is more complicated that it would initially seem. I’m all about acquiring picks and continuing with the rebuild, but they’ve been out of the playoffs 5 straight times. My concern is, like every other slump, this gets into the heads of the entire team. Winning builds confidence. Someone used Detroit as an example. I believe that a part (however small)of the reason why they make the playoffs every year is because the don’t know any better. Same goes for teams that never make the playoffs. Also, we have some players that are having career years, and can’t guarantee that will happen next year. I think (hope) that it is dependent on the value given to these players. Why would you risk not making it on a couple of 6th or 7th round picks?

  • PrairieStew

    Widemans not going anywhere unless you retain salary. Trading him does not make the team better in the short or medium term unless he is part of a package to get a better defenceman. Yandle might be that guy – but there is a risk you can’t get him under contract. If it is Wideman and a prospect for Yandle – I’m not sure I do that deal. Smid and 2 prospects – maybe.

    Hudler stays for sure – and you begin working on an extension next year.

    One of the goalies will likely move – I thought it would be at the deadline but might be sooner now that Ortio has played so well. If it is Hiller that gets moved then resigning Ramo for at least one more year needs to happen. Gilles will likley need a full year in the AHL.

    Stajan probably does not move – unless it is part of a package for a significant piece like a top 4 defenceman.

    Glencross might not waive for anyone – though he should consider it if someone like the Islanders come calling. Moving Jones will require retaining salary for next season – and the Flames should have no trouble with that. Mason Raymond and Brandon Bollig also might be candidates to move since their potential replacements ( Baertchi, Poirier, Ferland, Wolf) might not represent much of a downgrade even right now.

  • RedMan

    We absolutely stay away from the rental store! Absolutely no picks or prospects go for pending UFA rental. It’s not like this team is in need of tweaking. If youth or picks go out, youth & picks should come back.

    So with that mandate/agenda, what have we got realistically to sell. Not much. What have we got realistically that we can lose by doing nothing? GlenX & Ramo seem to be our only UFA’s coming up. GlenX probably needs to be moved, even if the return is a 2nd rounder. Not sure how he feels about allowing a trade for this to happen, but if Flames are still in the Wildcard race at TDL, what has he got to gain by allowing a trade? Really. He has a good shot at playoffs here, he paid dearly for his NTC, it’s his call. I am totally prepared if nothing happens with him & he walks come July 1 & we get nothing. If this is his stand, seriously, I think the Oilers would be the logical destination if he indicates to them he wants to stay in Alberta & is prepared/commits to resign in Edmonton. Flip him for Petry in that scenario. Win win for the Alberta teams.

    Ramo, what to do what to do? If I were BT, teams that need goaltending I would approach with either Hiller or Ramo. Their call. I would have a return of a 2015 1st rounder in either case & if it were Ramo, I would be prepared to throw in a Reinhart or Agostino or another prospect of that level with Ramo to sweeten the pot to get that 1st. You may even have to take a contract back as well.

    I would also be actively trying to pull off a real hockey trade of high end prospects & go after organizational needs. Expect a real quiet TDL for the Flames. The other pieces we could go on about in the likes of Bollig, Raymond, Engellend, Jones, Diaz, Smid will not be worth the returns if we actually sneak into the playoffs. We all know that playoffs are a marathon & we will need everyone.

    • Burnward

      May sound silly, but it is a serious question.

      What kind of a message would that send to the room if you ship a long-standing vet like Glencross to a hole like Edmonton?

      You treat your veterans right, I believe. Especially one that has given so much to the team. If Glencross and the team decide to part ways, he will surely choose a couple months with a contender than be stuck with that sh!tshow.

      I guess he does control his fate. I would think he would choose a better one than that, though.

      • Burnward

        Great question. Personally, this team has very talented young players chomping at the bit for every opportunity to crack the lineup. It’s big money, it’s big business & players & organizations understand this. I don’t think Gerlund, Wolf, Sven, Porrier, Shore will care if Flames move a long term vet that is not fitting into their longterm plans & try to get whatever value back. IThe answer to your 2nd part of the question is again something only GlenX can answer. Does he want to play in Alberta or a contender with a shot at winning now? If the answer is Alberta & then it won’t matter what kind of sh!tshow the Oilers are. If he can get a 4 year deal at 5.0mill per & become part of their transition & play close to the ranch, well where does he sign? If he wants to win, then obviously he will waive his NTC & Flames can get some value. What is the difference between trading him to the Oil or to Boston? Are teams not supposed to trade players because of optics of trading veterans?

  • everton fc

    Glencross has played well both ways this season. I think he likes it here and will sign “on the cheap”.

    The real question is this: does the Flames “brass” want to retain his services? If not… He’ll be moved.

    Forgot about Bollig. He and Raymond as part of a package w/Hiller. What do we get for this trio??

  • Graham

    While they are in the hunt for a playoff spot this season, the reality is that this team is likely two possibly three years from being a true contender. I think management needs to build within that time frame, so I wouldn’t be buying this trade deadline, but I would be selling pieces that don’t fit into the 2 – 3 year window.

    Players like Glencross, Wideman, Hudler are not going to be huge contributors in 3 years, so we need to move them for assets that will contribute in 3 years. The real challenge comes with Gio and possibly Backlund. As unpopular as it might be, I might be tempted to move Gio at the deadline. The return for a #1 dman playing at his level might well give us the pieces needed to be a contender in 2-3 years. I doubt he will be the same player in 3 years, and we could save his salary increase to pay Monaham / Bennett & Brodie. Backlund is also an interesting piece, if Monahan and Bennett develop into your 1 – 2 centers, does it make sense in a cap league to have Backlund as #3. He is insurance for now, but likely expendable in a couple of years.

    • everton fc

      I respectfully disagree on both Hudler and Wideman. And Gio will play until he’s 40. He’s the heart and soul of the team – remember what happened to the Oilers after they moved Ryan Smyth.

      Hudler will play effectively at 35. So will Wideman. You keep these two for the next 2-3 years.

      Glencross is a different story, of course. Perhaps sign for 2 years and cut ties. I think Ken King likes Glencross; perhaps he works for the organization when he hangs up the skates. And Backlund, you see how he holds up in the short-term. But he’s proven he can be a leader here, a quiet leader. I like that.

      Monahan/Bennett/Backlund/Bouma or Jooris or Stajan… That’s “above average” down the middle in this league.

    • JumpJet

      Tough argument to win. I strongly advocated moving Iginla after his last 50 goal season, but the team was totally different back then. Old, slow and basically zero prospects of note except.

      The team now is rebuilding and Gio is the heart and the guts. Very difficult move unless you get back a top 3 pick and why would those teams want to do that?

      A 5-10 pick though? A bottom ten team might do it, but still very doubtful.

      An 11-15 pick? Better odds and in this draft it would be tempting, but IMO it sets the team back by at least 3 years. Gio is simply too great a leader, too well respected and still too damn good at the hockey to take that chance.

  • everton fc

    The way I see it the importance of moving players goes in this order:

    -Glencross

    -One of Ramo/Hiller

    -Raymond

    -Diaz

    -Engelland

    -Jones

    -Byron

    -Bollig

    -Stajan

    -Wideman

    -Hudler

    The top 5 I kind of hope get moved.. the next 6 get moved based on pieces being ready on the farm to take their spots. So move them as time passes and players are ready to jump up.

  • KiLLKiND

    Glencross has a no-trade-clause and he wants to stay in Calgary. This makes him rather untradeable and hopefully he finds his level of offense he provided on a regular basis in the past

    why trade Wideman? we don’t have any D that are ready to step into the 3-4 slot and he has had an amazing season putting and I think he could be longish term part of Calgary going forward at least for the next 3 years. He could even play in the 5-6 role as a powerplay specialist if his play starts to falter.

    As far as trading Jones I would recommend calling up Poirier before making this decision maybe he isn’t quite ready for the rigors of playing in the NHL.

    This is still a rebuild however the guys on the team are having fun and want to be here unless we are making a hockey deal it might make it harder to bring players in if we get rid of vets that stuck with us for last 5 years but ship them out when we do have a chance at playoffs.

    I say the only trades Calgary can or should make is either Ramo or Hiller, or Smid and Reinhart for a D of sorts but I kind of doubt either will happen.

  • everton fc

    There is no way we should move Hudler or Wideman unless we are way out of a playoff spot. They are two important pieces to why this team is playing the way it is.

    I understand Wideman is not very good, but if we move him we are going to have Smid or Englend as one of our 3-4 dmen.

    Hudler is a great player and looks like a great mentor for the young kids.

    Jones, Byron, GenX, Ramo can all be replaced by younger players, so I think we should move them

  • Nick24

    I’ve been happy with Jones this year. If you look at him as the player he is, he’s actually pretty good.Yeah it kinda sucks he’s paid 4 mill a year, but as a 3rd line winger that can play the physical game, chip in a bit offensively, all while not getting killed possession wise is fine by me.

    Regarding Wideman, unless we have the guarantee of getting a young top 4 d-man back we cannot trade him this year. Because I don’t want to see Engllend, Smid, Diaz, Potter, or Wotherspoon in the top 4.

    I’d also be hesitant about moving Hiller. Ortio’s had a great four games, but how will he play over 20 or 30? Ortio’s still a young guy with a lot of upside and Hiller would be a great stabilizing force between the pipes. We could probably get at least a 2nd for Ramo. Plus, there’s nothing forcing Ramo to stay here next year.

    Don’t trade Hudler please, he’s too good.

  • RedMan

    Youth should only replace vets if they can perform “as good or better”. there is no reason to get worse short term (by trading vets) in order to give rookies chances to develop and prove themselves. they can do this on the farm.

    So, the question is – who is redundant? so far, none of the top 4 D are redundant, so you do not move any of them. If you can bring in a D-man good enough to bump wideman down the pecking order – that is the best case scenario. A strong, defensive, mobile #3, but not in exchange for wideman, bit in exchange for Diaz or Engaland or Smid.

    • Burnward

      I agree with you in theory. However, while ideal, this is not always possible. For example, how does a guy like Poirier get a legit shot without moving a Jones? Sometimes room has to be created. Again, this isn’t Detroit; Calgary is not an established 20+ years in a row playoff contender. They’re rebuilding. Certain tough decisions will have to be made.

      • Burnward

        The other really nice thing going in our favour is that Brodie’s contract kicks in next year, Backlund needs to get resigned & his salary will double. We don’t have that “cap floor” scenario looming to force some stupid signings from BT this summer. The year after that we have Gio & Money & Gaudreau, Hudler & Ortio to resign. I hope we never hear about “cap floor” ever again. Just hope we don’t hear about “Cap Strapped” again either 🙂

        I am not liking Raymonds game & Byron is frustrating the hell out of me but I doubt he has much value. I also wanted to see Mcgrats kick the pi$$ out of Regehr last night.

      • RedMan

        I think we are on the same page… There has to be room for guys like Poirier, and the team has shown they are willing to send vets down (Grats/Gooch) and i have confidence that Poirier and others will work their way onto the roster. Like many have said, I wouldnt be surprised to see a trade to make room up front and bring in defensive prospects.

        • everton fc

          It is ADDITION by SUBTRACTION. If you dump some deadwood like Raymond, Diaz, you will have room on the roster for additions from Addy, like Poirier, WSpoon and Ferland.

  • The Last Big Bear

    The Flames 3rd defence pairing are killing them. An upgrade to the depth defence puts the Flames comfortably into a playoff spot.

    I think that a depth defenceman, at least someone better than Engelland/Diaz, can be acquired relatively cheaply. Something like a 3rd round pick should do the trick.

    I think it is 100% worth it to spend a 3rd round pick to effectively buy playoff experience for the young Flames.

    The Flames are not building a budget team to compete in the regular season, they are developing a team to be playoff champions. And playoff experience for their young core, early and often, should be something they strive for.

    I understand the notion of not ‘mortgaging the future’. But I also understand flexibility, and I think that it’s ridiculous to hold back a young developing team from making a playoff run, just because of some dogmatic notion that says trading one scratch-card of a draft pick means you’re giving up on the future.

  • The Last Big Bear

    I’d also add that while the team might be able to get away with trading someone like Glencross or Raymond without having a major impact on performance, I would want to see a BIG return for guys like Wideman or Hudler.

    Because if they trade Wideman or Hudler, the Flames’ season is over.

    I’m not saying they’re untouchable. And I’d be perfectly happy to see the rest of the season go down the drain if the Flames could get a pair of firsts and some prospects back for those two.

    But that’s the kind of return I’d want to see to pull the plug on a promising season and stretch run that could result in playoff experience for the young guys.

    • JumpJet

      You overvalue Wideman IMO. He’s scored some HUGE goals, but he also costs the team defensively more often than he’s able to put the puck in the net. Those same goals however, means now is the time to sell high on him.

      To me, Hudler is the only veteran forward that I would demand a ‘can’t refuse it’ return on.

      • JumpJet

        The problem has not been our second pairing D-men. Wideman is even +/- and Russell is plus 8.
        The problem is the 3rd pairing of Enggeland/Smid , both -12 or with Diaz -6.

        Wideman is a keepeer until the lastyhear of his contract….we do need decent 3rd pairing D-men. Do this aquisition in the of-season.

  • The Last Big Bear

    With Glencross, we all could have it both ways. He agrees to a move to a contender & resigns here in July for the hometown discount( and hopefully with a ring on his finger). He keeps the ranch, we keep the grit factor and goals. Plus, his being prone to injury makes timely space available for up-n-comers. Win-win-win!
    There’s gotta be a market for our two number 1’s. A package with any of the above mentioned “throw-ins” should yield at least a 2nd rounder and maybe a prospect. I say we pull the trigger on as many deals as possible, with SeanCharles’ top six being in the first clip, regardless of whether or not we’re in the show. Somebody mentioned the winning culture factor we’re growing here. Seems like a great chance for some of the young guns to get a real taste and for us to continue to stock the cellar.

  • Matty Franchise Jr

    I’d probably try to extend Hoodie for a couple years, but if the price is right, he’s gone. The right price would be pretty high though.

    I must say, I’m feeling pretty, pretty smart right now, having suggested before Joni Orti4-0 got called up that Hiller should be on the trading block along with Ramo. Hiller will have more value than Ramo, and Joni and Ramo can split duties next year.

  • JumpJet

    As much as I enjoy trade speculation, can we establish how much salary the Flames can shed while staying above the cap floor? You can argue that moving Jones, Hudler, Wideman, etc is in the best interest of the team, but is it actually possible?

    The only guys I would move from the Flames’ current roster would be Glencross and Ramo. Both have expiring contracts that can be filled by younger players. Glencross’ situation has been discussed at length, but I don’t see a place for him beyond next season, and I doubt he would sign a one year deal only to be traded at next year’s deadline. Ramo is the goalie to move since he does have value (2nd rounder?) but I don’t think offers anything to the Flames that Ortio doesn’t. If Ortio can’t handle the starting role for the remainder of this season or next we still have a proven #1 in Hiller. If Ortio can take over then it makes Hiller expendable.

  • The Last Big Bear

    I would be shopping Glenny and Ramo. I wouldn’t trade Hudler or Wideman unless it was an offer you couldn’t refuse. Both are central to the leadership of the team and Wideman is a legit top four right handed dman (though overpaid). Jones I’m indifferent on. I doubt you would get anything for him and I don’t see what the need to really move him is. He is a big body that can skate and play in the top 9. Plus he is one of the only right shots on the team. No need to rush the young guys. We want to be Detriot, not Edmonton.

  • The Last Big Bear

    To me it just makes sense to cash in on what has been a great season:

    Wideman, Hudler and Glencross will probably not be worth as much as they are now.

    I would make the same argument for Gio, but he’s so solid, I just don’t think they would get the right return for him, unless it’s a top 5 pick.

    • Nick24

      I would consider making a playoff appearance “cashing in.” Give the young guys a taste of it so they want more. Not to mention it’s great to be a fan when your team is in the playoffs even if they’re a Cinderella team