Photo credit:Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
A market appears to be forming for Calgary Flames forward Elias Lindholm
By Ryan Pike2 months ago
The Calgary Flames could look very different when the National Hockey League’s annual trade deadline arrives at 1 p.m. MT on March 8. The club has several pending unrestricted free agents on their roster, one of the more prominent being first-line centre Elias Lindholm.
Reports over the course of the past few days have suggested that a trade market could be forming for Lindholm’s services.
As we mentioned on Monday, our pal Frank Seravalli from Daily Faceoff connected the dots on Barn Burner between the Colorado Avalanche’s newly-opened cap space (from the Tomas Tatar trade) and Lindholm.
In Thursday’s edition of 32 Thoughts, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman also connected the Flames and Avalanche:
The Avalanche expect a serious run at a second Stanley Cup in three seasons, and are trying to set a tone. The concern is depth. Rantanen (22:37), MacKinnon (also 22:37) and Valeri Nichushkin (21:17) are tied for first and seventh in ice-time per game among forwards. Only one other team (Toronto) has three in the top 20, and William Nylander is 20th. Trading Tomas Tatar to Seattle (a need for the Kraken) opened up some space, and everyone’s wondering what Colorado will do with it. One target is believed to be Calgary’s Elias Lindholm. He’s exactly what they need, but that might take time. The Avalanche still face a cap crunch, although no one believes they will stand pat.
Meanwhile, on TSN’s Insider Trading segment on Thursday, Pierre LeBrun discussed possible trade fits for Lindholm. He noted that discussions between the Flames and Lindholm’s camp have been quiet, but cautioned that it might not necessarily mean anything:
“The Flames haven’t told him they’re definitely moving him. And Lindholm hasn’t told the Flames he definitely wants out, so there is that. But I do think he’s going to get dealt closer to March 8, and the two teams that come to mind for me are the Boston Bruins and the Colorado Avalanche, both could use that fit.”
LeBrun pointed to the fits – the Bruins need a Patrice Bergeron replacement and the Avalanche need depth help – but also noted that the acquisition cost could be a challenge for both, as the Bruins and Avalanche have each sent significant assets out the door in recent years (in somewhat similar situations). In his Friday Rumblings column at The Athletic, LeBrun also flagged a potential fit with the Carolina Hurricanes, but also cautioned that the ‘Canes may be hesitant to pay a high price for a rental player.
Again: we don’t know definitively that Lindholm is on the move, but when this many of the league’s insiders say that there’s a fit within the same week, it definitely seems pointed in that direction.
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