Photo Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

Arizona claims Freddie Hamilton off waivers, Flames recall Marek Hrivik

Ladies and gentlemen, the Calgary Flames are down to one Hamilton brother in their organization. Forward Freddie Hamilton, elder brother to Flames blueliner Dougie Hamilton, has reportedly been claimed off the waiver wire by the worst team in the National Hockey League, the Arizona Coyotes.

In a corresponding move, the Flames have recalled forward Marek Hrivik from the American Hockey League’s Stockton Heat.

Hamilton, 26, was originally acquired by the Flames in a trade with the Colorado Avalanche for a conditional seventh round pick. The condition never converted because Hamilton didn’t get enough NHL time, so essentially they got him for free. The Avalanche were up against the contract limit and didn’t really know what to do with him, so playing on his brother’s team was a natural fit.

He spent much of 2015-16 with Stockton and only ended up playing 38 NHL games and amassing five points during roughly two full seasons on the Flames’ big league roster. He was a frequent healthy scratch, but was praised by the coaching staff for always being ready to play when called upon. Hamilton’s a fairly versatile player and his low, low cap hit ($613,000 AAV) is definitely useful for a budget team like the Coyotes, but he’s more or less a fringe body at this juncture.

Hrivik, 26, was signed as a free agent this summer after spending his North American career in the New York Rangers organization, primarily with their AHL affiliate in Hartford. A useful depth body – strong in the AHL and decent in the NHL in limited use – Hrivik has 29 points in 28 games with Stockton. Listed as a left wing, he can play all three forward positions and gives the Flames’ bottom six group a bit of versatility and energy.

With Hamilton’s claim, the Flames are down to 46 active NHL contracts.

    • TJ85

      New member of FlamesNation here – popping my cherry with this post.

      One idea I batted around with some buddies last week was trading D. Hamilton for a legit top RW. We have guys who are NHL ready (Anderson, perhaps Kylington or Fox next year), and that could mean sliding Brodie back up with Gio where he thrived previously. I think Kulak could be ready for top 4 minutes as well. We desperately need a RH sniper, especially on the PP. The obvious candidate for trade would be the Leafs, who have a surplus of young talented shooters (Marner, Nylander) and a big hole in their top 4 D. I wonder if there’s a blockbuster to be made here…

        • McRib

          “Kulak is 0-7-7 in nearly 60GP. I just don’t see him as a 4D”

          Michael Stone who you regularly support on here has 9 Points in 58GP as a Flame and gets far more PP time then Kulak does. One thing is certain Rasmus Andersson would have more than 0.15 PPG if he was on the big club, Stone is also terrible defensively according to analytics for what it’s worth, but I digress.

      • Cfan in Van

        That won’t happen at all. Even with good prospect depth, they’re not going to bank on Anderson/Kylingtion/Fox/Kulak dealing well with top 4 minutes. They also won’t put Brodie back with Gio as long as GG is the coach and with Brodie’s play this year, they’d still probably be hesitant to put him in the 1st pairing.
        That type of trade is at LEAST 1.5 seasons away, in my opinion.

        • McRib

          “That won’t happen at all. Even with good prospect depth, they’re not going to bank on Anderson/Kylingtion/Fox/Kulak dealing well with top 4 minutes”

          As long as Hamonic and Stone are getting Top. 4 minutes, we will be outside of the playoffs looking in. I don’t get it Vegas is top of the West with a team full of young players and we are all making an argument to keep Andersson off the NHL roster. It’s a young persons game now.

          Stone and Hamonic have a combined 8 Points this season, which just isn’t acceptable in today’s game where you need offense from the back end. Both are also liabilities at best defensively (they were both Bottom. 5 defenseman in the NHL last year from an analytics standpoint. If they can’t at least generate offense what good are they?).

        • TJ85

          Perhaps you’re right, may not be in the cards right away. But there will be time soon when they will likely have a surplus of NHL ready D (Valimaki might be only a couple years away as well). I just think if they have the ability to deal from a position of strength and not give up picks/prospect capital, its a good move

    • Rockmorton65

      I don’t know if you can call it desperation. They’re not getting the results they expected, so they’re tinkering. Frolik’s hurt, so not a bad time to experiment before making a move. No sense trading assets for scoring if it can be found in house. Maybe there’s a trade coming, who knows?

      • Skylardog

        They have gone from a total reluctance in giving prospects a shot at the beginning of the season, to bringing them in on a weekly basis. We started the year with Kulak (in the popcorn seast I might add, added Janko 15 or so games in, then Rittich only a month or so ago. Now we have Hathaway, Mangi, Hrivik in the last 4 weeks or so, and they are not just bringing in guys for injury issues, but clearing out guys to make room.

        Many of these guys, like Mangi, never even got a decent shot in training camp. For a team that totally resisted prospects, they have added 2 this week and haven’t even decided how to use Mangi yet. Something changed, you can feel it in the air.

        Anyone else get a feeling Jagr is a scratch again tonight?

        • The Beej


          They are not desperate. The prospects all have development plans in place. Things are going exactly according to plan. Kulak was eased in according to plan. Same with Janko.

          Would we like a few more wins. Of course. Regarding prospects there are long term plans in place.

          Just because you as a fan are panicking and do understand that basing all decision making on small sample sizez and short term results does not mean Flames mgmt are doing the same.


          Tkachuk. Mangiapane. Rittich. Kulak. Janko. Hathaway. Hrivik.

          Its just taking longer than you would like.

    • BendingCorners

      They had a plan contingent on the rate of prospect development. The prospects have developed and injuries have created openings. Seems completely rational to me, not rushed or desperate at all.

    • Broken

      Not desperation. More like common sense. F Hamilton just one of three other guys not getting the job done (Brouwer, Lazar and Stajan). The team may actually be able to piece together a fourth line that’s functional. Between Brouwer, Lazar, Stajan and Freddie they’d combined for two goals and some horrid possession stats.

  • Scoring_guru

    Dougie Hamilton has always reminded me of a Jay Bouwmeester 2.0. Good skater, tall, big body but his give a crap meter is always on low. You don’t win with guys like Dougie. You win with Gio or Matthew Tkachuk where they will do anything to win. We are slowing gaining some good puck moving solid skating defensemen in Stockton. I agree that we should see if the Leafs are willing to make a trade for a good skating defenseman named Dougie…. although I am sure he has a no move clause knowing the Flames.

      • Kevin R

        I would rather trade Brodie, who also has 2 years left on a very nice contract. Brodie is like 3 years older than Hamilton, so I would rather keep the younger guy. But Hamilton would have more value.

      • Cfan in Van

        I agree with that. His style might not jive with some people here, but he’s effective and if he was used more on the PP, he’d have much better offensive numbers. You don’t move him until someone’s ready to take over top pairing minutes.

      • Tell me why a 9th overall first rounder only three years into his career with signs of high potential refuses to sign with a Cup contender and sign with a still rebuilding team that also happened to acquire his older brother that Boston passed on? Are you seriously going to tell me it hasn’t been an issue?

        • Cfan in Van

          There are very little optics on what offers Dougie may or may not have turned down, other than he rejected the Oilers (Chiarelli). Given all the factors involved in the choice he mad, you chose to think it was nepotism.
          The Flames traded for Freddie four months after signing Dougie, so there would have been no guarantees attached to the DH signing… But don’t let that get in the way of your narrative.

  • buts

    Lots of periphery moves and it looks a lot better on the organization not having this nepotism in it. We all know these moves are NOT what is really needed…it’s the coach that needs to be moved. We will probably lose some players that will come back to haunt us (Lazar) if we keep making moves to win, when we know our coach is in over his head.

  • Stu Cazz

    Something is brewing regarding Doug Hamilton. BT has built depth on defence and dealing Hamilton or Brodie is an option he has given himself. I’m intrigued by the possibilities with the Leafs or Coyotes knowing they would give up a ton to get Hamilton. An elite forward(s) and high draft picks are the Flames needs…

    • everton fc

      Interesting thoughts around the Leafs and and Coyotes. And Sens. And Habs. Pacioretty and Shaw would look good in Flames jerseys. It’d certainly be the ultimate “shake-up” move, and would free up cap space for guys like Ferland, down the road (Didn’t mention Backlund. Wants WW to have a good day! ;))

      • BlueMoonNigel

        If Flame fans are irked with Dougie’s somewhat lackadaisical demeanour, they won’t think much of Patches’. Flames don’t need Shaw and his proclivity for taking dumb penalties plus his horrible contract.

      • supra steve

        D Hamilton $5.75 mil/yr X 3 more years

        ” Pacioretty and Shaw would look good in Flames jerseys. It’d certainly be the ultimate “shake-up” move, and would free up cap space for guys like Ferland, down the road”

        Pacioretty $4.5 mil/yr X 1 more season, then is UFA
        Shaw $3.9 mil/yr X 4 more seasons.
        D Hamilton replacement (assuming Andersson), $750,000/yr X 2 more years

        I don’t see any freed up cap space.

    • BlueMoonNigel

      Arizona is not going to sell the farm for Dougie. They are in no hurry to compete. They have already shown they can survive without fan support and Bettman has assured them that their franchise is solid and will be backed up again by corporate welfare. NHL can get way more dough from expansion franchises than relocating teams, so Arizona ain’t goin’ nowhere. So there is no reason for them to feel pressure to build a winner. Finally, guys love playing there. Look at how many stay in Arizona after they retire. It is one of the sweetest gigs in the league. Why try and mess with it by trying to make the team competitive?

      • everton fc

        Yep. We could move him for a package. Maybe move Gillies w/him. Something along those lines. And pick up Duclair, Fischer, Merkley… a first…. Sure up our right side, going forward.


        • Roger the Shrubber

          I don’t know why this was trashed so many times. Obviously you’re not gonna get all of those players for Dougie and Gillies, but you’d get two of them and the pick.

  • ThisBigMouthIsRight

    OK, well (in all ridiculousness)if Dougie wants to follow his big bro? trade him & Brouwer (or Stajan, or both) for Oliver Ekman-Larsson and Arizona’s First Rd this year. And I’m cool with that. 🙂