Daniil Miromanov was a nice surprise for the Calgary Flames in 2023-24

Photo credit:Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Shane Stevenson
1 month ago
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Of all the moves made by Craig Conroy maybe the most unexpected was getting relatively unknown commodity Daniil Miromanov in a trade at the deadline. He was acquired as part of the trade that sent Noah Hanifin to the Vegas Golden Knights.
Since then Miromanov has signed a 2 year deal with an annual average value of $1.2 million per season and appears to be a player of intrigue as the team goes forward in their “re”-whatever they’re calling it now.

The season

Prior to being acquired by the Flames, Miromanov had played 9 games in 2023-24. He had 5 with Henderson of the AHL and 4 with Vegas in the NHL. It took him a long time to come back after suffering from an undisclosed injury in December of 2022. He was cleared to play from that a full 2 years later in January of 2024 and then traded to Calgary as he couldn’t crack the deep top 6 defence of the former Stanley Cup Champions.
After coming over Miromanov was paired predominantly with MacKenzie Weegar – and the two thrived. Miromanov brought his unique skill set from years as a forward and added an element of attack to the rush the Flames hadn’t had… well really ever. He read rebounds differently, made good bluelie reads of the attacking zone, pinched into open areas some defenceman wouldn’t, and made opposing wingers lives more difficult than one would expect. With Weegar as a safety net – one capable of also jumping in- the two ended up being the clear cut number 1 defence pair the Calgary Flames could trust down the stretch.
Now it was only a 20 game sample, but as you will see it was a pretty darned great one.

The numbers

Boxscore stats are the most easily translatable to all readers. 20 games played – three goals, four assists, seven points. It’s a 29 point pace over an 82 game season and it came facing the other teams best players as he played next to Weegar.
Not bad at all, but what about his defence and play driving. Luckily I’ve got the advanced stats there too.
Being placed next to MacKenzie Weegar covers a lot of faults, as well as only having a sample of 20 to 24 games isn’t enough to make the numbers what the statistics world would call normalized. So this isn’t me stating things won’t change, but it is me stating he was lights out excellent in his time on the ice.
The ability to have a defenceman contribute that heavily to chances in the crease is not something you would see in every defenceman. Most defenceman have their shot map be near the blueline with next to nothing near the net, but Miromanov isn’t your usual defenceman. Watch him score this goal off a rebound – he was exactly where a winger would be sitting with anticipation for the rebound and he got their while coming in down from the right side of the ice.
This is the kind of wildcard twist he brings to the table. If it was negatively affecting Calgary he wouldn’t have been playing such a predominant role. His impacts were strong and he’s more than earned a full season of work to try and show he’s a true blue NHL player.

The future

With two years at an extremely cap-friendly number, if Miromanov keeps up his strong impact one of two things will occur. He’ll be signed to a mid-range deal at better dollars and will be a fixture in the Flames top four defence or he will be used as a trade piece to further acquire more growing assets. (Heck, maybe even a more surefire one as the Flames continue to attempt to grow towards league relevancy once again.)
If the impact isn’t there the deal can be put in the minors for a very small cap overage. With it not being long term or high dollars this is a relatively low-risk move the Flames can only really end up benefiting from.
Here’s hoping the numbers and impact remain high, it could end up being a steal of a deal for Calgary if that occurs.

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