Report: Arnold and Van Brabant Accept Qualifying Offers

In a bit of minor news that was reported last night by our pal Renaud Lavoie over at TVA in Quebec, the Calgary Flames have reportedly tied up a couple of restricted free agents for another season.

Bill Arnold turned 23 in May, after the completion of his first professional season. He was Calgary’s fourth round pick in 2010. The Boston College graduate rose to NCAA prominence as a solid 200-foot player, but his production exploded in 2013-14 playing alongside Johnny Gaudreau and Kevin Hayes – 53 points in 40 games. Arnold missed 11 games due to injury this season, but emerged as a pretty solid AHL center as a rookie. His best stretch in Adirondack came as center on a line between Sven Baertschi and Emile Poirier.

Bryce Van Brabant turns 24 in November. He signed with the Flames in the spring of 2014 as an undrafted college free agent out of Qunnipiac University. The native of Morinville, Alberta has size, but never really blew the doors off in Adirondack last season, putting up just 16 points. He was a pretty decent depth option down the stretch, helping fill out the club’s bottom six, but we’ll see if he emerges as something beyond that.

The signings give the Flames 39 players under contract for the 2015-16 season (including Mason McDonald’s deal, which will slide a year). They have eight restricted free agents remaining: Drew Shore, Josh Jooris, Kenny Agostino, David Wolf, Micheal Ferland, Lance Bouma, Paul Byron, and Turner Elson.

  • OKG

    Arnold is a big part of the Flames future. This kid has been well coached, has a strong work ethic, nice speed and most importantly is skilled at face-offs. Being Johnny’s best buddy is a plus going forward for sure!

    • piscera.infada

      Remember Jarome’s best buddy and linemate, Hnat Domenichelli?
      Arnold’s a decent prospect, which is your point, but I don’t put much stake in that Arnold + Gaudreau “chemistry.”

    • piscera.infada

      Two-way contracts. I imagine in (at least) year two of those deals, Arnold will be making full freight, and Van Brabant will be making whatever his AHL salary is.

    • piscera.infada

      Given the Flames are inching closer to being a cap team, it makes sense for a prospect trying to break in to keep his NHL cap hit reasonable so the Flames can fit in the call up if they cannot access LTIR for cap relief.

      Some real world examples of prospects that had two way deals in the 950k-1.25M on the NHL side, who didn’t get called up solely because of limited flexibility.

    • Slowmo

      He won’t make more money next year u half wit, those are their NHL salaries “if” they actually play games in the NHL next year. Give BVB a $10M NHL level contact next year…it won’t matter unless he actually plays games

      If u want to know who will actually make more money next year u need to look at their AHL level salaries bud

  • everton fc

    Arnold’s a no-brainer. As for Van Brabant, I like him. A lot of people lately calling for us to cut him loose, but never say, “Why”, other than he’s not very good, or words to that effect.

    • piscera.infada

      Sorry for my ignorance. I haven’t watched Van Brabant much, so I can’t really comment on his game, isn’t “he’s not very good” a pretty good reason to cut a player loose? Honestly asking. There is a cap on contracts. I mean, he’s always struck me as more of a fringe NHLer.

      • everton fc

        What I was getting at is, if he’s “not very good”, Treliving and Burke wouldn’t resign him. He brings grit and a decent two-way game. I think they want to stock the cupboard with this type of player, short-term. This may, indeed, be his time to prove he can play in top-6 situations in Stockton. We shall see. My point is people were saying he isn’t very good, without giving examples. I can see why they let Ramage and others go. They saw enough of them to conclude there was no room on the bench for them, going forward. Perhaps they like some parts of his game; I think they wanted him to work on speed and skating last summer. If he’s improved, this may be why he was given another shot.

        Probably is a fringe NHL-er. We shall see.

    • OKG

      Because even at the AHL Level, he’s going to be notably worse than at least three of the left wings there:


      And his “role” was also “stolen” by Garnet Hathaway whose NHL contract starts this season. Austin Caroll and Hunter Smith will also be filling out the bottom 9 there next season.

      So you’ve got an NHL contract spot on a guy who’s stuck as a 4th liner in the AHL.

      It’s not a big deal at all, and last year was his first year pro so he’s got another shot at it this year, but it didn’t really make huge sense to me. I just don’t see the NHL upside which is what NHL contracts are for.

      Basically…. if BVB was the guy on the AHL contract do you think he would have been signed to an NHL contract after last season? Whereas if Hathaway was on an NHL contract he like Wolf and Agostino would have been a no-brainer to qualify.

      • everton fc

        I agree with your post. I think it’s a contract to determine if he has any future here at all. He’s an asset. The organization feels he has potential. As you say, “Not a big deal at all”. But there is a log-jam beginning in Stockton, as well.

        • OKG

          Maybe it’s not a big deal right exactly now, but when you’re pressing right up against the 50 contract limit you do compromise flexibility which I think is the main thing.

          – Jankowski will turn pro this same year after his senior year of college.

          – Hickey needs to be signed and could turn pro this year after his sophomore year.

          – With a strong senior year, we might (and IMO, should) sign Gilmour.

          – If we’re talking about guys to fill out AHL depth, I’d want to sign Matt DeBlouw.

          – Where do Andersson and Kylington fit into the equation? None of them need to play in Junior to develop.

          – What about these standout UFAs at dev camp (and eventually Pentincton/Training Camp/End of year NCAA)? Many of them looked like better players than Jooris when we signed him… Brandon Hawkins (I want to sign this kid, some real NHL potential there), Tyson Baillie, Josh Pitt, Chris Dienes, Jason Fram. Five guys who have my interest going into next season.

  • Slowmo

    I think a couple of these players will be bait for future trade deals by the end of this season coming up we will see some minor trades which I hope will open up some contracts and remove some unneeded bodies

  • RedMan

    team needs players in Stockton as well…in the larger scheme of things need to keep in mind that BT IS not just icing an nhl team, Bu an ahl team as well (and echl for that matter)