The past week has been an emotional rollercoaster for the Calgary Flames, as the club left captain Mark Giordano exposed. Then they saw him claimed by the Seattle Kraken in the expansion draft. Moments after Giordano’s selection was officially announced, Flames general manager Brad Treliving spoke with the media regarding Giordano’s departure from the organization.
A visibly emotional Treliving began his press conference with some remarks on what Giordano meant to the franchise:
We don’t have enough time here today to talk about what Mark Giordano means, has meant, not only to this team, but to our community, to his teammates, to the fans, myself personally, that have been around him. He’s a tremendous leader, is a tremendous leader. I’ve said on countless occasions, to me he has been the moral compass of this team for a long time. Him moving on is the closing of a very important chapter in this franchise, and I think him, his wife Lauren, Jack and Reese, for everything that they’ve done… This is part of the cruel side of the business of hockey. I wish him nothing but the very, very best. And we miss him. Seattle got a great, great man today.
Treliving explained that the expansion process has been going on for awhile and he had been chatting with Giordano regularly throughout the process. Both Giordano and the club were informed of his selection by Seattle on Tuesday night.
Mark Giordano said he understands the situation Flames GM Brad Treliving faced when it came to the expansion draft.
— Ryan S. Clark (@ryan_s_clark) July 22, 2021
Speaking about Giordano’s impact on the club, Treliving alluded to instructions he often gave to young players to follow the captain’s example on and off the ice.
“If you wanted to just follow somebody and how they work, how they prepare, how they commit, how they live, follow that,” said Treliving. “If you come pretty close, you’ll be alright. I think he’s had a big impact on a lot of people.”
While he declined to comment on the specific price tag to get Seattle to avoid selecting Giordano – Sportsnet’s Jeff Marek reported it as first and third round picks – Treliving reiterated the challenges of the business side of the game and the tough decisions the club had to make surrounding expansion.
“Mark understood the situation,” said Treliving. “We all understood the situation. And at the end of the day, we were looking at ways for it not to happen. But from an organizational standpoint, you have to make business decisions. And when I say that, in order for this not to happen, it was a price that we couldn’t pay.
Regardless of the logic behind the situation and how well everybody grasped why Giordano had to be exposed – and why the Flames couldn’t pay the price to keep Giordano – Treliving acknowledged the difficulty of actually having the team’s captain move to a new team.
“It’s the reality,” said Treliving. “Maybe the girlfriend’s breaking up with you, but at the end of the day it’s not really going to happen. And then all of a sudden it happens. You know, it feels the shits. You go through that process, and today you’ve got to get back to work. You have to move forward. The franchise continues. We have to move forward here.”
Via @puckpedia, #Flames have 8 forwards, 3 defensemen and a goalie under contract for 2021-22 (NHL regulars only), and about $21.1 million in cap space. If they carry 22 roster players, they have 10 NHL jobs to fill.
— Ryan Pike (@RyanNPike) July 22, 2021