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Calgary Flames dominate latest edition of Daily Faceoff’s Trade Targets board

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Photo credit:© Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports
Ryan Pike
9 months ago
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Over at Daily Faceoff, Frank Seravalli unveiled his latest Trade Targets board on Monday in advance of the 2023 NHL Draft. As would be expected given the state of things, five of the 50 players on Seravalli’s list are currently members of the Calgary Flames.
Here are the five Flames on Seravalli’s list:

#4: Elias Lindholm

Scoop: The Flames are holding out they can convince Lindholm to stay. They met with him last week and rolled out the red carpet, tried to impress upon him just how big a part of their future he is, and have let him know in no uncertain terms exactly how valuable in terms of a contract extension. You don’t have to look further than Dylan Larkin or Bo Horvat’s new deals for comps. To this point, Lindholm hasn’t given Calgary an answer one way or the other. The longer this drags on, the less positive it would appear to look for the Flames. Speculation around the league is that Lindholm will choose to play elsewhere, but that hasn’t been communicated to Calgary.

#8: Noah Hanifin

Scoop: The early indication, at least for the time being, is that new GM Craig Conroy is gauging the market on Hanifin in the event that the Boston native chooses to not sign a contract extension in Calgary. To our knowledge, there’s been no firm or final decision made on that position just yet. But given Conroy’s edict at his initial press conference, the Flames will want proper “asset management” on any player heading into the last year of his deal, wanting to avoid that player walking for nothing as a free agent. Hanifin’s game has grown by leaps and bounds in Calgary, recognized as a defenseman whose value is significantly above his current cap hit.

#9: Tyler Toffoli

Scoop: Toffoli has made a trade request with the Flames, in part due to their apparent reluctance to offer significant term on his next contract, and in part because there appears to be lingering questions about the team’s ability to compete now with a potential exodus on-hand. Toffoli is coming off a career year with new highs in goals, assists and points – and he has one more year left on an absolute bargain contract. There’s so much to like about the potential of adding Toffoli to a mix with his consistent scoring capability, leadership and Stanley Cup experience.

#24: Mikael Backlund

Scoop: Backlund was perhaps the biggest surprise among the Flames’ players potentially on the move. He has indicated to Calgary that at the present time, does not envision re-signing with the team. He is also their longest-tenured player (by a wide margin) and the only remaining holdover to play from when now-GM Craig Conroy suited up for the team. The Flames had visions of Backlund wearing the ‘C’ as captain next season, and would like to still try to convince him to stay. But that would likely require a contract extension.

#32: Dan Vladar

Scoop: New Flames GM Craig Conroy acknowledged on Frankly Speaking that Dustin Wolf has earned an NHL opportunity after putting up monster numbers in the AHL. It would stand to reason then that opportunity would come at the cost of Vladar, who many saw as a future No. 1 in the NHL. He’s locked up for two more seasons at a very cost effective $2.2 million, which makes him a highly tradable commodity if the belief is shared that he can take on a bigger load than the third of a season he played last year. And he might be more attractive, especially for cap teams, than one of the free agents available.
A common thread from the various insiders lately – notably Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman – is that the Flames’ moves will all stem from what happens with Lindholm and Hanifin. If they’re both moved, it could trigger follow-on moves with some of their other pending 2024 unrestricted free agents (Toffoli, Backlund, Chris Tanev, Nikita Zadorov and Oliver Kylington). If one or both sticks around, the tone around their other potential moves obviously changes.
The 2023 NHL Draft goes June 28 & 29 from Nashville, TN.
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