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Assessing the Calgary Flames’ trades under Brad Treliving

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Photo credit:Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Ryan Pike
10 months ago
During his nine years as general manager of the Calgary Flames, Brad Treliving made a lot of trades. Some were good. Some were not good. Some swapped Corban Knight for Drew Shore and merely… were.
Here’s a look at the many trades Treliving made.
For ease of discussion, we’ve slotted the trades into three categories:
  • Asset accumulation: trades that got the Flames futures or additional draft selections at the cost of the team’s present-day strength.
  • Lateral moves: moves where the Flames swapped assets with their trade partners that didn’t appreciably make the Flames better or worse.
  • Asset spending: trades that spent futures or additional assets with the aim of making the Flames immediately better (often at the cost of the future).

Asset accumulation

Curtis Glencross to Washington for 2015 second-rounder & 2015 third-rounder
Sven Baertschi to Vancouver for 2015 second-rounder
Treliving sold off a pair of diminishing assets at the 2015 trade deadline: pending unrestricted free agent Glencross, and Baertschi, who had requested a trade. (He did this despite the team being in the playoff race.)
Jiri Hudler to Florida for 2016 second-rounder & 2018 fourth-rounder
Kris Russell to Dallas for conditional 2016 second-rounder, Jyrki Jokipakka & Brett Pollock
David Jones to Minnesota for Niklas Backstrom & 2016 sixth-rounder
Prior to 2016’s trade deadline, with the team out of a playoff spot, three pending UFAs were traded by Treliving.
Brett Kulak to Montreal for Rinat Valiev & Matt Taormina
You could argue this was a lateral move, but Kulak was a rock-solid third pairing blueliner who was traded to the Habs for two minor-leaguers after a contentious arbitration hearing.
Michael Frolik to Buffalo for 2020 fourth-rounder
Frolik had fallen out of favour with head coach Bill Peters, was playing on the fourth line, and had requested a trade. Treliving found him a new address.
2020 first-rounder to NY Rangers for 2020 first-rounder & 2020 third-rounder
2020 first-rounder to Washington for 2020 first-rounder & 2020 third-rounder
Treliving traded down twice in the first round of 2020’s draft, adding a pair of third-round selections in the process.
David Rittich to Toronto for 2022 third-rounder
Sam Bennett & 2022 sixth-rounder to Florida for Emil Heineman & 2022 second-rounder
With the Flames outside of the 2021 playoff picture, the Flames sold off pending UFA Rittich and pending restricted free agent Bennett for a prospect and a draft pick.
2021 third-rounder to Los Angeles for 2021 third-rounder & 2021 sixth-rounder
The Flames traded back in the third round in 2021, adding a sixth-rounder in the process.
Matthew Tkachuk & conditional 2024 fourth-rounder to Florida for Jonathan Huberdeau, MacKenzie Weegar, Cole Schwindt & conditional 2024 first-rounder
With Tkachuk indicating that he wasn’t going to stick around long-term, the Flames sent him to sunny Florida for four assets (including a complicated conditional selection).

Lateral moves

The majority of this selections were the Flames punting on an asset that wasn’t quite fitting in exchange for another team’s similar asset. Most of them weren’t particular notable, aside from perhaps the Neal/Lucic swap in 2019.
Corban Knight to Florida for Drew Shore
Max Reinhart to Nashville for conditional 2016 fourth-rounder
Conditional 2016 seventh-rounder to Colorado for Freddie Hamilton
Future considerations to Tampa Bay for Kevin Poulin
Markus Granlund to Vancouver for Hunter Shinkaruk
Patrick Sieloff to Ottawa for Alex Chiasson
Tom McCollum to Detroit for conditional 2018 seventh-rounder
2019 fourth-rounder to Montreal for 2018 fourth-rounder
Hunter Shinkaruk to Montreal for Kerby Rychel
Morgan Klimchuk to Toronto for Andrew Nielsen
James Neal to Edmonton for Milan Lucic & conditional 2020 third-rounder
Brandon Davidson to San Jose for future considerations
Future considerations to Montreal for Michael McNiven (and then Michael McNiven to Ottawa for future considerations a week later)
Radim Zohorna to Toronto for Dryden Hunt
Connor Mackey & Brett Ritchie to Arizona for Troy Stecher & Nick Ritchie

Asset spending

So, these are probably the ones that will be the most controversial.
2o14 third-rounder to Chicago for Brandon Bollig
Treliving had been on the job for about seven weeks when the 2014 draft came around. With a young, raw team set for 2014-15, he flipped a previously-acquired third-rounder (acquired from Pittsburgh for Lee Stempniak) for Bollig, an established depth forward who could give them minutes right away.
2015 first-rounder and two 2015 second-rounders to Boston for Dougie Hamilton
Two 2015 third-rounders to Arizona for 2015 second-rounder
Remember how Treliving added two seconds and a third from selling off Glencross and Baertschi? That allowed him to (a) trade three picks for RFA Dougie Hamilton and (b) trade up from the third round to draft Oliver Kylington.
2016 second-rounder & conditional 2018 third-rounder to St. Louis for Brian Elliott
Brandon Hickey, Chad Johnson & conditional 2018 third-rounder to Arizona for Mike Smith
Keegan Kanzig & 2019 sixth-rounder to Carolina for Ryan Murphy, Eddie Lack & 2019 seventh-rounder
2022 third-rounder to Boston for Dan Vladar
If there was a thing Treliving liked to trade picks for, it was goaltenders with a year or two left on their contracts. He made four separate swaps like that, with the Vladar deal arguably aging the best. (The seventh-rounder they acquired in the Eddie Lack trade, though, was used to select Dustin Wolf.)
2017 third-rounder & conditional 2018 fifth-rounder to Arizona for Michael Stone
2018 first-rounder, 2018 second-rounder & conditional 2019 second-rounder to NY Islanders for Travis Hamonic & conditional 2019 fourth-rounder
If there’s a second thing Treliving liked to trade picks for, it was physical, stay-at-home blueliners. You could argue that both of these swaps were overpays relative to the level of scoring output each defender contributed.
Jyrki Jokipakka & 2017 second-rounder to Ottawa for Mike Kostka & Curtis Lazar
At the time, Dave Cameron (Lazar’s old coach from earlier in his Ottawa tenure) was with the Flames and the thought was that due to that familiarity, the Flames could unlock Lazar’s full potential.
Dougie Hamilton, Micheal Ferland & Adam Fox to Carolina for Noah Hanifin & Elias Lindholm
This is arguably the tidiest work of Treliving’s run. Hamilton didn’t click with the Flames defensive systems fully and had requested a trade. Ferland was a year away from free agency (and a big, big raise). Fox had told the Flames he wouldn’t sign with them. And so the Flames more or less swapped three diminishing assets for two younger players with many controllable years ahead of them.
2019 seventh-rounder to Ottawa for Nick Shore
Conditional 2020 fourth-rounder to Los Angeles for Oscar Fantenberg
Conditional 2021 fourth-rounder to Los Angeles for Derek Forbort
Conditional 2020 third-rounder to Chicago for Erik Gustafsson
2022 second-rounder, 2023 third-rounder & 2024 seventh-rounder to Seattle for Calle Jarnkrok
2024 fifth-rounder to Chicago for Ryan Carpenter
If there’s a third thing Treliving liked to spend picks on, it was pending free agents at the trade dealdine.
2022 fourth-rounder to Seattle for Tyler Pitlick
2022 third-rounder to Chicago for Nikita Zadorov
Tyler Pitlick, Emil Heineman & 2022 first-rounder to Montreal for Tyler Toffoli
During the 2021-22 season, Treliving made three trades which sent futures elsewhere in exchange for players with controllable years left (or, in Toffoli’s case, players that were already under contract).
Conditional 2024 first-rounder & Sean Monahan to Montreal for future considerations
Finally, Treliving needed to get out from under Monahan’s cap hit in order to sign free agent Nazem Kadri, so he sent the conditional pick he acquired in the Tkachuk trade from Florida to the Habs along with Monahan. It was the only pure cap dump of his tenure.
Which of Treliving’s many, many trades did you think was the best? The worst? Let us know in the comments!

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