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Flames sign Kerby Rychel to one-year deal worth $650,000

Mere hours after acquiring Kerby Rychel for Hunter Shinkaruk, the Flames have signed the left winger to a one-year, two-way deal, worth $650,000 at the NHL level.

Rychel, who will turn 24 in October, is the seventh member of the 2013 NHL first round draft class to join the Flames. He has three goals and 14 points over 41 NHL games with the Blue Jackets and Canadiens, and 55 goals and 154 points in 232 AHL games: a .66 point per game showing.

In 2017-18, he played four games for the Habs, scoring a goal and an assist; he also had 42 points over 71 games between the Marlies and Rocket at the AHL level.

There is a potential spot open for Rychel at the NHL level, but he’ll have to compete with other Flames forward prospects in order to get it. Andrew Mangiapane outscored Rychel at the AHL level, while both Morgan Klimchuk and Spencer Foo came close in fewer games played; Foo is the only one older than Rychel by just a couple of months, but has less professional experience.

Despite acquiring so many players selected in the first round of the 2013 draft, few have panned out at the NHL level:

  • 5th overall: Elias Lindholm (recently traded for, fourth in draft-wide scoring)
  • 6th overall: Sean Monahan (drafted by the Flames, second in draft-wide scoring)
  • 17th overall: Curtis Lazar (traded for in 2017, 23rd in draft-wide scoring)
  • 19th overall: Kerby Rychel (just traded for, tied for 42nd in draft-wide scoring)
  • 22nd overall: Emile Poirier (drafted by the Flames, recently released, played eight NHL games)
  • 24th overall: Hunter Shinkaruk (traded for in 2016, just traded away, tied for 62nd in draft-wide scoring)
  • 28th overall: Morgan Klimchuk (drafted by the Flames, recently re-signed, has played one NHL game)

Shinkaruk, meanwhile, has been signed by the Canadiens, also to a one-year, two-way contract worth $650,000 at the NHL level.

The Flames’ lone piece of business left this offseason is signing Noah Hanifin.

    • Jobu

      3 FWD spots available – 2 will be riding pine at any one time – you can bet 1 will definitely be a bruiser – that bruiser will be either Rychel or Hathaway. Going to be interesting to see which one makes it.

  • Atomic Clown

    I was going to comment that Feaster should have packaged the 22nd and 28th picks to move up in the draft, but holy crap it’s a pretty bad year. You have an excellent top 7, then Horvat, Domi, Wennberg, Mantha and Burakovsky, with Theodore and Morrisey rounding it out. Then it’s just several feet of crap.

  • Calgarycandle

    Rychel is 6’1/207. Scrapped some in the AHL. Could the Flames be looking to add 4th line team toughness? He’s LW. Lots and lots of competition for 4th line LW. I guess both team gave up on each of the players involved.

  • Alberta Ice

    Get Noah Hanifin signed IS the last item of Flames business, just as Oilers
    signing Nurse is their last item of business. Interesting how both these guys will push the limits of the cap space on their respective teams.

  • C-of-Dread

    Clearly a swap of AHLers who’ve been passed in the depth charts by multiple prospects and have good fortune of having been 1st round picks. Otherwise, both teams would likely have cut bait and moved on. This may be the final, “needs a fresh start” opportunities for both players. However, although size has less and less value in today’s NHL, with the shift in the game moving more of an emphasis on speed and skill, when evaluating 2 players with relatively comparable skill sets and with both unlikely to make the jump to the next level, the 2 inch taller and 25 lb heavier skater might just give other players sharing his ice time more space.

    I like this mostly inconsequential deal. It takes care of an RFA that Treliving hadn’t been able to sign and he quickly signed Rachel upon his arrival, thus, no harm, no foul. Winner winner chicken dinner!

  • Garry T

    Hanifan should be signed for a max of 3.5 million for five years and have incentives for him to earn to take him up to a max of 5 mil. Over that five years, Christ everybody wants 5-15 mil now. There are teams out there that cannot spend to the max because of low revenue streams. Player costs are totally out of hand.

    • C-of-Dread

      If you look at 2010 – 2014 they all play out about the same.
      The top 8-10 are pretty solid and about half of the bottom 20 pan out to varying degrees
      it just so happens that the flames have tired out quite a few of the lesser successful of the bottom twenty

    • C-of-Dread

      I think a dose of reality sobered them both RFA’s up.
      Shinkaruk/Rychel: “I want a 1-way deal!”
      Treliving/Bergeron: “It’s a 2-way or we’ll just move you and someone else can tell you you aren’t worth a 1-way deal, or let you sit it out!”
      Shinkaruk/Rychel: “I call your bluff!”
      Treliving/Bergeron: “Welcome to Calgary/Montreal. So how about that 2-way deal?”
      Shinkaruk/Rychel: “Where do I sign. Thanks for the opportunity”
      Treliving/Bergeron: “Don’t thank me yet. It’s you’re last chance!”

      • cjc

        More or less, but it could be a change of scenery thing too. The new GMs may be willing to give a fresh face more of a chance, and the players may feel like they have more of a chance. But both are rapidly aging out of prospect territory

    • oilcanboyd

      They both felt their current team never gave them a chance…Hunter saw the writing on the wall – couldn’t make it last year with a team sparse in talent, so his chances of making it this year wre slim and none.

  • FL🔥MES

    At the end of the season who would have thought that a LW prospect might have a better chance of making the starting lineup than a RWer? Amazing how quickly the lineup has changed.

    • C-of-Dread

      Depending on your view of Bennett, after Johnny and Byng the left side was pretty slim as well. Once you consider the possibility that the 4th line might require more than size, grit, speed, and physicality, and that it might be better served to use the 4th line as an energy/forecheck line that also possesses speed and skill, it was necessary to address both wings, beyond the top 6. Through free agency and trade, the right side bottom 6 has been addressed by adding Neal and Lindholm for the top six which slides Frolik to the 3rd line and Czarnik, Foo, or Hathaway can hold down the #4 RW. Depending also how Ryan is viewed, he’s a forward option who might be best used at center due to his face-off prowess. That being said, if Ryan is going to play Center, that needs to be on the 3rd line, which bumps Jankowski down to 4C.
      This isn’t necessarily a bad thing if they do try and use the 4th line in a more offensive role. Rolling 4 lines becomes much more plausible if the 4th line is skilled and fast enough to be the third line. That would require 1 more skilled speedy left winger.
      Is that Lazar, Mangiapane, or possibly Klimchuk?
      Little was done to address the left side, hopefully there’s enough from within to suffice.

      • FL🔥MES

        The right side needed to be addressed more than the left. This caused a ripple effect down the right side. The left side on the top two lines is amazing. So now we have Bennett – Ryan – Fro as a third line? That’s a decent looking line that’s worth a shot. Follow this up with ? – Janko – Czarnik.

        I’m content with this. If someone flounders we have a number we of other players waiting to ply their trade.

        • The Fall

          Random thoughts:
          Ideally Backs and Fro stay as a pair on a 2B defensive zone line.

          Sam is nearly a bust for any breakout. So Sam-Ryan-Fro feels like a thrown together line of spare parts who can take more minutes than the kids on the fourth line.

          Dube-Backs-Fro feels like a 2B line with purpose.

          Giving Janko or Ryan a shot as a 2A centre with Byng and Neal feels like a win.

          But all told this top nine feels like a group that can balance ice time. Hopefully resulting in Sean not requiring three surgeries and Backs burning out under the pressure.

  • Korcan

    A forwards lineup I’d like to see experimented with while in China:

    Johnny Mony Tkachuk
    Bennett Lindholm Neal
    Frolik Backlund Ryan
    Mangiapane (et al) Jankowski Czarnik

    It could produce interesting results

    • BlueMoonNigel

      But isn’t Ryan’s strongest suit winning faceoffs? For a club that has been abysmal for years at winning the war of the dot, don’t you think it’s imperative Ryan play centre? One the reasons the bottom six was so bad last season was that the third and fourth lines were forever chasing the action after losing a faceoff.

      • freethe flames

        Exactly; Ryan will be one of the centers. How the 4 lines will be created is the question. After reading Haynes interview with BT I am convinced that the Flames will be trying to roll 4 effective lines next year and the question will be how to create 4 lines that can play. I still believe we have 10 forwards we can play and create two excellent scoring lines and 2 checking lines that can also score; the key is finding 2 guys to fill the out the checking lines. Let the battles begin.