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Calgary Flames lose rights to five drafted prospects

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Photo credit:Robert Lefebvre /OHL Images
Ryan Pike
3 months ago
The annual signing deadline has come and gone, and the Calgary Flames have not come to terms with five prospects. As such, they lose the National Hockey League rights to 2019 pick Lucas Feuk, and 2021 picks Jack Beck, Cole Huckins, Cole Jordan and Cam Whynot.
Feuk becomes an unrestricted free agent.
Beck, Huckins, Jordan and Whynot will be eligible for selection in the 2023 NHL Draft at the end of June.
We can only speculate as to why the Flames didn’t sign the five players, but here’s the gist of it: you only have 50 players under contract at a time, and you don’t sign players just to sign them – you need to have a clear idea of where they fit into your developmental system, and a plan to shore up their game to help them become future NHLers.
But here’s our best speculation regarding why these five players didn’t get signed:
  • Feuk spent the 2022-23 season in the ECHL and was a depth player for the Rapid City Rush. (Contrast that with teammate Rory Kerins, who spent most of the season with Rapid City but was a really consistent offensive player despite some injuries.
  • Huckins bounced back from an uneven 2021-22 season and was a consistent offensive player for QMJHL Sherbrooke in 2022-23, but he wasn’t one of their offensive leaders.
  • Jordan suffered a season-ending injury and missed a ton of time due to injury in the two seasons since being drafted.
  • Whynot also missed a good amount of time over the past two seasons, and failed to show much offensive progression.
  • Beck is probably the player scouts we spoke with had the most time for. But while he showed good promise on both sides of the puck, he’s struggled with some tough injury luck over the past two seasons – including a kidney contusion and a suspected concussion – and missed a bunch of time, and if you’re a smallish offensive player, you seem to need to have crazy-good scoring numbers and the ability to avoid injuries.
In short: sometimes it’s a numbers game when it comes to drafting, development, and getting an NHL contract. Between injuries and offensive production stagnating in some cases, the numbers were against them.

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