139Mark Stone
Photo Credit: Tom Szczerbowski/USA Today Sports

Report: Senators ‘ridiculously high’ asking price for Mark Stone includes young defenceman, multiple firsts

The trade deadline is getting closer and closer by the minute, and with names like Mats Zuccarello, Ryan Dzingel, and Matt Duchene falling off the board, it seems like it could be pretty much Mark Stone or bust for the Calgary Flames.

But given Ottawa’s reported asking price, it’s looking like bust. The Sens are reportedly asking for multiple first round picks, one of Juuso Valimaki, Rasmus Andersson, or Oliver Kylington, and even more to get the prize winger out of the nation’s capital.

It’s no surprise that Stone is going to be expensive. Ottawa took a first round pick, a conditional first, and two highly-touted prospects from the Columbus system for Duchene, and are likely looking to get a better deal for their final major trade piece. With Columbus now loading up for a playoff run, Artemi Panarin is off the board, giving Ottawa a monopoly on the premium rental market.

For the Flames, that price is too much. The team certainly understands that they have to pony up to get what they want, but given that they could struggle to sign Stone long-term – he was reportedly asking for $10.5M x 5 from Ottawa – and lose members of the active roster, it is a no-go.

Giving up multiple firsts would sting for a club that has only drafted twice in the first round since 2015. If one of the first rounders comes on the condition that Stone re-signs with Calgary (as it is in the Duchene deal), that means the Flames may not have a first round pick until 2021.

Losing one of Andersson, Kylington, or Valimaki also probably prevents the Flames from pulling the trigger. Pat further elaborates that including Valimaki or Andersson would be “non-starter[s],” and understandably so. Both have first pairing potential – Andersson has been getting spins there recently – and are still on cheap contracts for two more years.

The club seems more at peace with potentially parting with Kylington, but he is also an NHL-level defenceman with two more cheap years remaining. He may be someone they’re willing to deal, but he’s more than just a throw-in.

The final piece of the puzzle involves an unnamed roster player with a year-long cap hit of $1.5M going back to Ottawa to balance the budgets for both teams. That could be Mark Jankowski, Sam Bennett, Derek Ryan, Michael Frolik, or James Neal. If Ottawa is rebuilding, they’re likely looking for younger players, so Jankowski or Bennett. That’s a regular contributor you now also have to lose in the deal.

To recap: The Flames would have to send two firsts, likely Jankowski or Bennett, and Kylington to the Senators for Stone. Remember that the Senators could potentially still ask for more if they want to. I would have to agree with Treliving in this case – don’t sell the farm.

We have 24 hours and change to see what will actually unfold, but given what Ottawa’s asking, maybe don’t expect anything big.

  • Kevin R

    That is pure lunacy & Dorion can keep him & lose him come July. No one is giving a package like that for a @#**g rental.
    Pass Tre, go in today, kick their Stoneless butts today & move on. Ludicrous to say the least!

  • Eggy

    Absolutely no wouldn’t even consider that trade stone is 26 wouldn’t want to give players who are good now and way younger for him. Also in years to come vali and Andersson alone could carry more value than stone so it’s a no from me

  • slapshot444

    No one is going to pay that price seeing as he wants 10mm x 5 yrs to sign. Ottawa is playing chicken and might loose here. Likely a lot of last minute phone calls tomorrow but this is going to go no where fast .

    • Stockton's Finest

      @ Lama, probably Kylington along with Gillies.

      @WW, he is much better than Gillies, has more NHL experience, and signed through next year ($700K one way). He is 15-10-5 with a 2.76GAA and .910 SV% this season. NHL carreer numbers are 14-8-3-2; 2.84 GAA: .906 %. Oh, and he is only 23.

      • Stockton's Finest

        Everybody has talked about goaltending and what if Rittich or Smith goes down. There is no confidence in anyone on the farm. Heck, I don’t have any confidence in them to win an AHL game (using Wednesday’s game against last place Ontario as proof). So why not try to shore that position up? We are not getting Howard or Bob, so who else is out there? This is both a short term and long term play.

    • wot96

      Agree. You don’t say no and walk away because it focuses Dorion’s mind and maybe he drops his price for the other potential buyers. Stay in, even if Tre doesn’t intend to deal, and he can make his own deal, or not, at the last minute.

      • Flames Fan in Edmonchuck

        Yup Tre has all the cards here. If a trade that he likes happens, great, but he is comfortable with his group now… PERFECT position to be in for trade deadline day!

  • Flames Fan in Edmonchuck

    Dorion will be left holding the bag and get nothing for Stone if he doesn’t come off that…. I wonder what Florida would want for Hoffman, or Buffalo for Skinner? Either of those guys can fill the net too, not Stone but like has been said, still add to us and won’t cost nearly as much….

    • TheDallyLama

      I like both those names. But playing devils advocate, I wouldn’t want Hoffman’s wifes drama in cowtown, could bleed into the dressing room, and Skinners injury did not look pretty last night. But I hope we get something that helps solidify our team ?

  • Scary Gary

    For the record I don’t want to make this trade, we could grab a cheap 0.5 ppg in the playoff player like Boedker for a pick.

    If they did make this Stone trade Ottawa would have to take Neal.

  • Mickey O'Reaves

    Here’s what’s going to happen. Stone will stay on in Ottawa. Stone has agreed to the Senators insane contract offer, but wants the money in signing bonuses.

    Dorion has to put on a show because his owner doesn’t want to spend the money that way. Melnyk will eventually relent and pony up.

    These huge all signing bonus contracts are a problem that will be addressed in the new CBA.

    • Flames Fan in Edmonchuck

      I tend to agree with you if not for one thing…. why would Stone want to stay in Ottawa? He has taken two bridge deals in a row from them…. they have kind of jerked him around no?

      • Mickey O'Reaves

        A bridge deal at 7.35M? Life is tough for a dude drafted in the 6th round. It wasn’t really a bridge deal anyway, his owner is just “cheap” in the high flying life of billionaire owners. Eugene Melnyk being one of the “poorer” billionaires. He’ll find the money to pay Stone.

    • cjc

      I really hope this happens, because I could then see Doiron agreeing to pick up Mike Stone in order to keep him happy.

      The signing bonus thing is an interesting issue, but owners don’t have to offer them. They could just collude league-wide and say “no big signing bonuses” – it doesn’t need to be written into the CBA. The main idea from a player perspective is to lockout-proof their contracts.

    • Kzak

      Then why not give them a first and a third for Stone but add a condition that if we win the Cup, they can have our next five first rounders or any player on the roster or both? Has a deal like that ever been done?

    • Chucky

      I don’t think it works that way but Treliving should try it. Give them what they want and if the Flames don’t win the cup Ottawa gives the guys back, takes Stone and Neal but sends Brady.

  • RKD

    Dorion is trying to get better than what he got for Duchene but he’s gotta come down on his ask. Why give up that much if Stone isn’t going to re-sign. $10.5 million per season. Our young guys are not only everyday NHLers but they are actually playing well. Why should we help Ottawa?

  • Vernon30

    OTT is probably still mad that they are probably going to finish last, and that (more than likely) at least top 2 pick will go to Colorado. How does Dorion still have a job. He’s trying to recoup all he lost last year. They’re gonna end up letting Stone walk, because nobody is paying that price.

  • freethe flames

    To be honest I would not trade either Andersson or Valimaki straight across for him; yes he is a goal scorer but the cost of resigning him makes him a rental. If they took Frolik and Kylington for him I might it only b/c losing Frolik might make signing Stone possible. But if he came here he would be our 5th best forward, not one of our top 3. Use the assets more wisely than this. There are plenty of giys who could be our 5th/6th best forward.

  • smatic10

    Agree with everyone in the comment section, 100% no at that asking price.
    It’s understandable that Dorion is asking for that because, in my opinion, Stone is better than Duchene and Dzingel.
    He puts up numbers, has size and skill, and is excellent defensively. Ottawa would not have made a run to the eastern conference finals without him. The starting point in trade discussions always involves big time pieces but through negotiating, the price comes down, so if we were to successfully acquire him, I do not see Andersson or Valimaki going the other way, they are untouchable. Here is a more realistic proposal:

    OTT: Frolik, Kylington, 2019 1st, 2020 2nd rd pick (becomes a 1st if we win 2 rounds), 2021 2nd rd pick
    CGY: Stone, 6th

    – Tree wouldn’t acquire him without knowing he can re-sign him so that’s not one of the stipulations on the picks
    – It’s a steep price, but it’s going to take a lot to get him
    – this is without gutting the current roster (gotta give up someone though to balance out the salaries and Frolik doesn’t have that much term left)
    – Kylington would be the young defenseman with big upside that they want
    – three high picks, you’re not going to get more than if you’re Dorion. The longer this takes, the more the price goes down.

      • smatic10

        Yup. I know things are tight cap wise but Tree wouldn’t do his Stone research and invest this much time into acquiring him to bring him in as a rental. If he’s going to pull the trigger on the deal, it’s knowing that he’ll be signed long term.

    • smatic10

      btw I know this proposal will get trashed a lot, but look at the returns on Dzingel and Duchene, they’re pretty impressive. It’s going to take more to get Stone. And like I said, it doesn’t gut the current roster. Stone replaces Frolik, Valimaki replaces Kylington. I guess change the 2021 to a 3rd round pick and that might be more favorable.

  • Jimmyhaggis

    Ottawa is asking way too much, I’d laugh if they get stuck with Stone after the deadline, and he doesn’t resign. I’m sure the asking price may drop as we get close to the final minutes.