142Mats Zuccarello
Photo Credit: Adam Hunger/USA Today Sports

Rumour Roundup: The calm before the storm

The trade deadline is less than 48 hours away. While the dominoes haven’t exactly toppled yet, the level of trade chatter from the usual hockey insiders leads one to believe that the Calgary Flames could be quite busy in the next few days.

The Mark Stone market

Brother of Michael Stone, offense-driving winger Mark Stone (a pending Ottawa Senators free agent) is one of the most coveted players on the market. But after Matt Duchene fetched two prospects, a first round pick and a conditional first round pick, the price has essentially been set for Stone.

Based on projections kicking around online, the Flames can add around $5.77 million in full-year cap hits and still be under the cap ceiling. But Stone carries a $7.35 million AAV, so the Flames would need to send some money out the door to make him fit.

But if the idea is that they would trade for Stone and then keep him, then maybe that’s something they’re prepared to do.

The secondary winger market

If you’re someone bristling at moving out a member of a roster that’s second overall in the NHL – and you wouldn’t be alone in feeling that way – the secondary winger market is probably right up your alley.

The primary focuses of trade chatter regarding secondary wingers have been New York Rangers winger Mats Zuccarello – Flames GM Brad Treliving took in Thursday’s Rangers/Wild game at Madison Square Garden – and Senators winger Matt Dzingel.

Zuccarello has a $4.5 million cap hit while Dzingel has a super-low $1.8 million hit, so adding one of these players – especially Dzingel – would still give the Flames the cap flexibility to potentially add a depth defender, or even just maintain some cap flexibility for potential injuries down the stretch.

We’ll have more on the ongoing trade chatter (and the Flames’ placement in the market) as it develops.

  • freethe flames

    I go to bed knowing the Flames are in first place in the west; 3 points up on the sharks with a game in hand. Hopefully when I awake BT will have made this team even better.

  • everton fc

    One thing not mentioned much, if at all here, regarding Stone;

    His brother is still a Flame.

    Does this carry any weight, in Mark Stone’s discernment process?

    Of Hayes and Kreider; Kreider’s affordable. Both are East Coast New England boys. Lots of those here, in Calgary (Johnny, Hathaway, Hanifin), bot to mention Hayes’ cousin – Matthew Tkachuk. Could be a fit here, but how to re-sign him? Salary’s gotta go.

    Hayes is fast. He could be the player to bring Neal out of his dormant hibernation.

    • Puck Head

      Hayes makes sense over Kreider from a positional standpoint. He would give the top line 2 centremen, added size, and he has familiarity playing with Johnny. It would create a trickle down effect and strengthen the bottom 3 lines.

      Hayes and Krieder would be just what the doctor ordered….one can dream

  • everton fc

    If the Flames could bring Hayes and McQuaid here, somehow… And Brodie was the chip going the other way (w/a pick for McQuaid)… And Hayes would sign here (can’t see how that gets done, unless they move more salary, somehow)….

  • Jourflamesfan

    @NHLFlames

    News: Hearing that the #Flames

    worked all night trying to make this trade happen for #GoSensGo

    Mark Stone & will keep at it tonight, from what I’m told it would only work in a sign & trade. Flames are trying not to give up anyone from their current roster.

    This guy got the Foo and Jagr signings right so he has some credibility.

  • Garry T

    If Tre has a position on Kreider or Hayes, pull the trigger tonight. Waiting til Monday, TV exposure day means we get neither. Another kid I like is Ducks Ritchie. If I’m a blonde one away from a player who can help us and they need a nhl ready prospect, I am moving one of Foo or Gillies or both if necessary

  • Garry T

    Just heard report on TSN, Stone looking for big cash up front. Had good offer from Ottawa. He countered big money up front and Ottawa could not do it. I hope the Flames leave this guy alone.

    • Puck Head

      I kinda hope that Tre is using Stone as a smoke screen to make Winnipeg, Nashville etc. overpay, thereby taking them out of the running for the real guy(s) he’s after.

      Plus Neal will be coming back and should be starting his pre-season conditioning soon.

    • everton fc

      Yep. Agreed. Too much cash to throw at one player (see Kopitar, others, around the league).

      Work on Hayes. Ritchie would be ideal, to me, but I can’t see the Ducks moving him, and especially not to us. But he’d be a good acquisition, as well. I continue to get a strong feeling neither BT, nor Peters, wants to move anyone on the current roster. Any moves would be picks/AHL prospects/both. Trying to think of a playmaker who would fit here, for limited expense.

      • T&A4Flames

        Why a playmaker? We don’t need that. We need a pure sniper. We have Gaudreau, Tkachuk and a few others that are decent playmakers.
        I still say Toffoli would be a good add with 1 year remaining on his term.
        Also, how could we mot consider anyone fromm our roster. If we were to add say Stone what do you do with Czarnik? Hathaway? Neal? Frolík? To many players to sit.

      • Jourflamesfan

        Is it just me or does it seem like there is more rumours regarding the flames than in the past few years?
        I dont think I can recall so much smoke billowing from one trade deadline.

        • freethe flames

          When you are a team looking to make a deep run in the playoffs you are going to be linked to a lot of “difference makers” if you are team that is clearly out of and have assets to sell (UFA’s that could be “difference makers” you are in the rumor mill), but if you are team that is out of it and have little to sell you are caught watching.

      • Jourflamesfan

        @Everton

        I seem to remember a few yrs ago alot of speculation about Phil Kessel and if he would be worth trading for.
        This was when he was TML.
        Many…doubted he would do much cause he was overweight and so they thought disinterested.
        Then he goes to Pittsburgh and wins 2 cups.
        Guy has been that extra gear for the Penguins offense. (At least during those cup wins)

        My point is..Mark Stone might cost alot but if he puts us over the top and brings that extra gear to our offense then why not add him?

    • Puck Head

      Agreed, as long as one goes the other way so that we don’t have the old 3 headed monster staring us down again. If Tre does this he better bring in a ringer who can get us through at least a couple rounds.

  • Jobu

    Jobu just had a bad omen that Tkachuk (and another salary) could be headed to Ottawa in a Stone trade and sign.

    It’s the only way we could make cap next year with a Stone resigning. Can’t affors both of them.

  • Mickey O'Reaves

    Hayes will end up in Winnipeg anyway.
    Bryan Little is a great 3C, but he isn’t going to cut it as a 2C.
    The Jets will have to pony up on the overpay to get him.

      • Eggy

        Idk I would like to think that as well but I think Brodie is a little bit older and if I’m a rangers fan o would want more for kreider than Brodie not much tho

        • Hockey4life

          Brodie is a top pairing defenseman on a great contract that puts up points. Not to mention he’s only 28. If Hamonic gets you a 1st and two 2nd round picks, Brodie gets you Kreider and then some. Defensemen have greater value then forwards.

  • freethe flames

    The team that we have not heard much about being in on the action is the Cane’s and I wonder if they don’t need to make a splash. They are tied for the last wild card position and have plenty of capspace and assets.

  • freethe flames

    It is now 9:00 a.m. in Ottawa and BT has been working the phone but no magic has yet to be done. No Flames are on IR and no one has been sent down to the minors to make space; until one of these are done no deals can be made. Time for another cup of joe.

  • Chucky

    It looks like everybody in this article has been traded with the exception of Stone. Hopefully Treliving will sit out this insane pursuit of a scoring forward.
    Why would the team with the second highest goals for and the second highest differential feel forced to make a bad deal?
    The only area that they do not lead the league is save percentage with Rittich at 21 and Smith at 47. It is also the only area that has a significant gap for next year.
    Time for Treliving to address the real problem and not imagined deficiencies.

    • Jourflamesfan

      Maybe because our top line has really quieted down and hasn’t been all that effective so far down this stretch.
      Perhaps a top 6 guy might add that extra shot in the arm for them?

    • freethe flames

      One reason for doing so is b/c the guy who was brought in to be a top 6 forward has been MIA. But you are right if BT can magically find a team willing to trade an upgrade in net for peanuts then go for it. I’m not sure who the golden guy would be.

    • theartfuldodger

      The real problem is to solve the goaltender issues. What is with the serious lack of quality goaltending around the league? The majority of teams seem to have goaltending issues.

    • Baalzamon

      Why would the team with the second highest goals for and the second highest differential feel forced to make a bad deal?

      They’re not. That’s why they haven’t made one.

      They could have easily out-bid Columbus for Dzingel (well, they could have offered something better than Duclair anyway).