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Photo Credit: James Guillory/USA TODAY Sports

WWYDW: Should the Flames try to trade for Micheal Ferland?

There are two options for the Flames at the deadline: buy, or stand pat. Considering just how close the team could be to winning a Stanley Cup, though, it’s pretty difficult to see them doing something other than making an attempt to make their team better for a postseason run.

One avenue they could pursue would be to get a new forward to bolster their ranks – and someone they’re very familiar with just might be on the market. So, does it make sense for the Flames to trade for Micheal Ferland?

While the Flames have been linked to Ferland, they aren’t alone. It makes sense, though: Ferland exhibits a lot of desirable traits in a hockey player, especially for a playoff run. Not only is he pretty much the epitome of toughness, but he can score, as well – and we’ve already seen him so effective in one playoff series that he was a major factor in ensuring his team’s victory.

Assuming the Hurricanes – themselves a bubble team who may want to keep Ferland, even if they’re unable to re-sign him – do trade him, then they should have a lot of suitors.

That poses a couple of problems for the Flames:

  1. If multiple teams are interested in Ferland, then there will be a bidding war for his services. That’ll drive the price up. The Flames do not exactly have a lot of assets to spend at this stage.
  2. Ferland would, at absolute best, be a middle six player on the Flames. Is it worth it to get into a bidding war for someone who may very well just end up on the third line?

If the Flames have limited assets to spend, and are able to swing a deal for a higher calibre player (say, someone who isn’t as physical, but is a stronger scorer – someone Matthew Tkachuk would probably need on his line), then why not focus those assets on a player who can upgrade the top six in a meaningful way, rather than a tweener?

One of Ferland’s problems is that while he can score, he can’t drive play on his own. He scored 41 points in 77 games with the Flames in 2017-18, but that was when he was playing on a line with Johnny Gaudreau (84 points that year) and Sean Monahan (74 points). He would not be going back to that line – not with Elias Lindholm, a player capable of keeping up with Monahan offensively, present.

This season, with Carolina, Ferland has 25 points in 41 games, good for fourth in their team scoring. But he spends most of his time alongside Sebastian Aho (57 points) and Teuvo Teravainen (43 points). If the Flames got Ferland and had him playing on, say, the third line, he would not be that productive a player.

How would Ferland even shift the Flames’ lineup makeup? Assuming the top line is left alone, then here are a couple of possible variations for the middle six (assuming Sam Bennett is pushed to the fourth line alongside Derek Ryan and Garnet Hathaway or Austin Czarnik):

Ferland Backlund Frolik
Tkachuk Jankowski Neal
Tkachuk Backlund Ferland
Frolik Jankowski Neal
Tkachuk Backlund Frolik
Ferland Jankowski Neal
Frolik Backlund Neal
Tkachuk Jankowski Ferland

Basically, you’d have the AHL call-up spot eliminated, and you’d have a few more options for mixing players up, but is bumping Bennett down to the fourth line truly a meaningful upgrade when the incoming player can’t generate that much offence on his own – especially considering the possibly raised price to acquire him in the event of a bidding war?

On the other hand, the Flames are familiar with Ferland, and he with them, so it’s not as though anyone would have to worry too much about an adjustment period or any supposed disruption in chemistry. The Canucks back in 2015 were a weaker opponent, but Ferland was still able to create plenty of havoc for them from a line with David Jones and Matt Stajan. And he is a good complementary player – it’s just we haven’t seen him have to complement non-elite forwards for a few years now.

On the other other hand, if the Flames are going to be spending assets regardless, would they be better off aiming higher to improve their forward ranks – say, by getting an indisputable top six forward who can drive play? Keeping in mind they have a meagre amount of picks and prospects they actually can spend, would it be better to make a couple of small moves to improve the team, such as trading for Ferland, or go all in on one big acquisition?

I believe the assumption here would be that the Flames won’t be re-signing whoever they trade for – including Ferland – as their cap for the 2019-20 season likely won’t be able to accommodate any big additions long-term, not with Tkachuk’s upcoming extension. (And a hometown discount shouldn’t be an option for Ferland, either – he has a limited career window, especially considering the physical nature of his play, and he should be looking to maximize his paycheque, period. I’d imagine his agent would advise him of that.)

Or, considering the Flames’ lacking prospect cupboards and few high picks, would it make more sense to just not do anything at all?

What would you do?

    • Off the wall

      Our top 5 forwards ( including Backlund) are listed as number 1 in the league, 113 goals. Followed closely by Tampa and SAN Jose at 108 goals from their top 5.

      Our secondary scoring is 12th with 48 goals.

      Guess who’s well ahead of us in that area?
      #1. Tampa 65 goals
      #2. SAN Jose 62 goals

      Tampa and SAN Jose have depth in scoring. We don’t.

      Our secondary scoring isn’t good enough. We are a first line top heavy team. We’re not going to win it all with that alone.

      The puzzle needs completed -with another forward who can contribute offensively.

      Treliving will be working the phones..

      • Jessemadnote

        I just don’t know if Ferland addresses the issue of secondary scoring while he is a good physical presence. He’s a good complimentary guy for top scorers but away from Johnny Gaudreau, Ferland’s on-ice GF/60 dropped over 40%. Not worth it to pay a the price for a bit of physicality in my eyes, we can find it cheaper likely.

      • Albertabeef

        Our secondary scoring is fine, not great but fine. Of player to play over 20 games Neal, Dube, Czar, Hath, Kylington, and Andersson are below 0.25ppg average. Neal is at a 0.24 and he’s just had some bad luck(lack). Rookie D you can live with but are starting to find their stride. Everyone else is looking just fine.

        Kerby and the kids can help if absolutely necessary. Matty Phillips could play the role of Theo from 89 lol.

  • Kevin R

    Pass. If you are getting just to be a rental & he is very injury prone why risk the return that Carolina is looking for. 3rd or 4th round pick, sure why not but Carolina is looking for a 1st & a prospect. Pass.

  • Brian McGrattan's Salute

    If they’re going to trade for a forward, I’d say go for ferly. I think a better player would force the team to make some tough decisions that would disrupt chemistry, especially if this new player had to play higher in the line up.

    We have the 4lw spot open, and we don’t have a really consistent third line. So, assuming the price is right for ole ferly, and the canes trade him to us acknowledging they lost the trade last summer, then I think he would be a great addition to our forth line/third line.

    Is it ideal to push Bennett to the forth line? No, but Ferland can provide some nice internal competition for that 3lw spot, meanwhile adding some nice functional toughness, some depth scoring, a strong north-South game, and some really great passes. Maybe he’s the one to get Neal going?

    Also, a line of Chucky-Bennett-Ferland would be monstrous.

  • Off the wall

    We already created a problem for Carolina.They’re not going to be good trade partners now!

    For that reason Carolina is out. Sorry Ferland, we love you.

    If we’re talking strictly RENTAL, then I’d be looking for a BIG deal.

    Duchene, Stone, Schenn, Hayes. Those types of players.

    Two scoring lines, one shut down line and a 4th – fast, grinding line.

    Personally, I want to be aggressive. But I’m not the GM.
    Treliving is shopping, we just don’t know what he’s putting in his basket.

    I like surprises!

  • Jobu

    Ferland is a great player, when hes crashing and banging (and not getting concussed). Calgary is last place in hits. We are no longer a crashing and banging team, and Jobu would be surprised if we suddenly changed into one for the playoffs.

    And not to point fingers, but Ferland was on the team last year when the team was playing awful. We’ve been playing lights out since he left. Something to consider…

    If they really feel the need to bring in fresh fish, there are better swimmers in the sea for Calgary to pull into the boat.

  • Retire#14

    I dont see Ferland fitting into this edition of Calgary Flames. He is not skilled enough to bump anyone off of the top 2 lines, and he is injury prone. Sounds like Carolina has set a price that is too high for what he offers, especially knowing ilhe is a rental. I agree with OTW, make a big splash. Schenn, Duchenne, Paneran, Staal. Somebody that is a legitimate top 6 guy.

  • bork bork bork

    Thinking about the Detroit trade rumor from yesterday: Flames possibly moving a top 4 D plus 1st round pick to Detroit. What would you guys think if it was something major, like Hanifin and a 1st for Larkin and Kronwall? I’d be tempted.

    • Kzak

      I think that would be great trade. Larkin would be a great addition to our top two lines, as his speed fits right in with our team concept and Kronwall is Stanley cup winner and while he’s definitely aged, I certainly wouldn’t consider him a liability. Our pick will be a late rounder and we’re gonna lose one of our young dmen to expansion anyway, so let’s run with it. This could be the year.

      • Brian McGrattan's Salute

        Larkin is on pace for 77 points on a bottom of the barrel Detroit team, which is 9 more points than last season. This guy is a freaking stud. Signed for 5.75, which would be expensive to maintain, but if Hanafin came off the books, it might not be too bad. Can you imagine what this guy could do with Chucky?

        Good thing we’re stacked on D…

    • Brian McGrattan's Salute

      I’ve since looked into this, and I’m curious as to why Detroit would want more defensemen: they have a major logjam on the back end, much like we seemed to have last summer. Additionally, I see them building their new team around Larkin, but maybe getting rid of Nyquist for a 1st rounder.

      Holland will be working the phones to try and get Kronwall out for sure though.

      • bork bork bork

        I think you’re right about Detroit’s needs. I wonder if that’s why the rumor (which is maybe just bs lol) said Tre balked at the price. I wouldn’t be surprised if Detroit would ask for something like Janko, Hanifin, and a 1st for that package, because they’d want a young C coming back to help with the loss of Larkin. I’d be tempted to trade Janko, Hanifin, and a 1st for Larkin, Kronwall, and Nyquist, even though Kronwall and Nyquist are rentals.

    • Eggy

      The most recent game against the flames Larkin was everywhere single handedly giving Detroit the lead… until we came back lol. But for Hanifin and first idk kronwall is still an absolute beast defensively by the eye test but I think that’s too much money coming in and Hanifin is still so young

  • iggyfan12

    i would rather see them trade for wayne simmonds, hes a perfect fit for line 2 and we need pp2 help in the worst way so trade for simmonds or a pp specialist like vanek who will be cheap

  • 谢谢兄弟,我爱你

    I’d stand pat on Forwards. We’re plenty good enough at the top, and have enough NHL and AHL F depth for a long run.
    The only position I’d consider adding to is D, but I wouldn’t be too worried if there was no addition there either.

  • bork bork bork

    As for Ferland, my interest in him dropped significantly after hearing Burke talking about how nobody in the organization could get through to him at the end of last season, and Ferland had completely checked out on the team. I’m content to be grateful for the Lindholm/Hanifin trade, and let Ferland find his way on another team.

    • deantheraven

      Wow, Chef. I didn’t hear Burkie but it changes everything i may have said before.
      I heard Tre say that Ferly was hard to say goodbye to and was well-liked in the room and above.
      My main concern with any deal would be to be sure to find a good fit with this group. For me, Ferland was an obvious choice.
      Now I don’t want anybody… (sniff*)

  • Kzak

    I know I took a few thumbs down the last time I mentioned his name, but I still think Zuccrello would be a good option. He fits right in with our speed game and he’s a ufa after this season (which means he’ll be cheaper, there’s no commitment past this season, and he has extra motivation). He’s the perfect depth guy if we suffer injuries, if Neal doesn’t come around and/or we finally give up on the idea of Bennett becoming a scorer.

    • Sterls

      Yeah I get trashed for mentioning it too. Our middle six needs a playmaker to round it out. He’s also fast and a threat to score. WW says he is playing like crap, but he is going at a 0.68 PPG clip this season. I frankly don’t care that he is small, he plays a tough game. Over his carrier he has averages over a hit per game and blocks shots as a forward. I don’t get the hate…

    • Gus Fring

      I like that idea as well! Forget Ferland! Seems like everyone has forgotten the long stretches that he disappears from time to time. Zucc is a heart and soul guy! He would make the 3rd line better. He is a player that drives the play no one on our 3rd line does that now!

    • Albertabeef

      I laugh at people wanting to give up on Bennett. If you give up on him you are obligated to give up on the older Jankowski too. They are both younger and better than Neal, Hath, Ryan. and Czarnik. I just don’t understand this mentality. Bennett has 36 hits more than Tkachuk in way less ice time. Bennett is the exact type of player we need in the playoffs.

  • RealMcHockeyReturns

    Either do nothing, or trade for a forward you CAN re-sign for at/under $4M to fit under Cap (this assumes Tkachuck under $7.25 and Bennett under $2.25 and other roster spots VERY cheap). I suggest Dzingel from Ottawa. I don’t see any Stone brothers being traded (Mike in Cgy is injured while Mark will re-sign in Ottawa and they trade away Duchene).

  • Sea of Redd

    I would guess Carolina wants more than a 2nd round pick for him. So I’d say pass for this playoff run. As much as I like Ferland, there’s no room. Unless they’d take Czarnik and Hathaway for him. But I don’t see that happening. I wouldn’t be against the flames signing him in the off season. Would make the trade even more tilted in the Flames’ favor.

  • Searsy

    I predict the Flames trade for Patrick Maroon as a pure rental to add some bulk to the bottom 6 (likely 4th liner) as well as as a scoring winger. Maroon can do much of what Ferland can do and will only cost you a (very) late round pick.

  • Garry T

    I think I started this Detroit business through suggesting we try to obtain Anasthious for a top 4 D. I did not mean for this to expand for everyone on Detroit and give picks away. Anderson is the guy I would be moving. He can play throughout the top six D but even though he is versatile he has a couple of weaknesses that are fixable. If the deal was expandable and you wanted Nyqvist then I would say we will give you Foo and any of Dube or Mangiapane to round out the deal. Hanifin again has his weaknesses but he is certainly fixable and we paid far too much for him to shove him into a multiple player deal. If you put him on the market you are going to get 2 firsts or a first, second and 1 or 2 top notch futures for him. Love the other guys being discussed as forwards who could be brought in. I would take any one of the top three forwards being discussed here, plus Nyquist any day of the week. Not giving away picks. We could get a guy like Clark or Leeson or one of the top Russian guys in the mix there. Any of the guys I want in the draft are going to be in the NHL in2 year’s of seasoning and they are going to score goals, big time.

  • everton fc

    The Burke interview, and his somewhat cutting, curt commentary about Ferland “checking out” make it highly unlikely the organization brings him back. Unfortunately – unless Ferland’s issues were w/GG and the coaching staff – how he was used…

    I’d pass on Maroon. I’d give the guys on the farm a chance, over Maroon, who has less goals than Hathaway.

    Zucarello is not having a great year, but he’s finding some stride. Would depend on the price, but Czarnik would be going the other way. No need for multiple guys sub 5’9″. I’d inquire about Buchnevich, as well.

    Silfverberg is interesting, but how do we sign him after the season’s over? And why would Anaheim help us?

    As for Duchene… Again, how do we afford him, when he needs a contract? Dzingel’s the guy I’d target, in Ottawa. And I’d try and swap Gilles for Petersen (Kings 3rd goalie, now in the AHL).

    I’d be cautious of any massive moves. We need very little. The Detroit rumours are crazy, in my opinion. I would kick tires on Athanasiou, though. And, if the Devils are “sellers”, I’d inquire about Miles Wood, and Blake Coleman – better options than Maroon. The Devils would be nuts to move them, though.

    • everton fc

      I’d also speak to the Flyers about Nolan Patrick, but he seems to be turning his season around, and I’ll assume giving up on him now would not be a prudent move, for their future.

  • Korcan

    Pro: we know he would be a good fit, no worries about him not adjusting to his new team
    Con: the cost will be (too) high

    Lines:
    Tkachuk Backlund Ferland
    Frolik Ryan Hathaway
    Leave 1st and 3rd alone