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FlamesNation Mailbag: Closing out July with captaincy and arena talk

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Photo credit:Mike Gould
Ryan Pike
8 months ago
The month of July is all but gone, and August is the final month in the calendar without National Hockey League action before everybody gets busy again. As we count down the days between now and the beginning of Calgary Flames prospect camp in six short weeks, let’s dive into the mailbag!
Some qualifiers: First, the Flames’ preference would be to keep Elias Lindholm. You’ve probably heard chatter that he’s been offered a big contract – from such reliable folks as Pat Steinberg, Frank Seravalli and Elliotte Friedman – and we have no reason to believe that’s not the case. But Lindholm’s figuring out a big life decision after enduring two pretty challenging seasons at his workplace. Like some other players on the club, he might want a sense of how things will look under a Craig Conroy/Ryan Huska regime before locking in for the long term.
That said, if Lindholm decides he’d rather be elsewhere, man, a lot of teams will want to explore him as a trade option. If you’re trading Lindholm – to Boston or anywhere else – the question is what you’re trying to accomplish. You’re not getting anybody as good as Lindholm back. But the smart play might be getting some young players with upside in the deal, along with a draft pick. I’d probably like to see something including a 2024 first-round pick and a couple good prospects or young players with controllable years left. (Fabian Lysell or John Beecher may be among the most attractive commodities in Boston’s system because of the amount of years they have left under team control.)
The X-factor for the Bruins, in particular, is their current cap situation. Per CapFriendly, they have about $5.4 million in space left… but they still need to find new deals with arbitration cases Trent Frederic and Jeremy Swayman. It’s not like they can put together a futures-centric deal for Lindholm and have the math make sense; they’ll need to send something off their NHL roster to make the cap calculus balance.
Personally, I’m a big proponent of two particular guys as captain: Rasmus Andersson and MacKenzie Weegar. Robert did a column earlier this week discussing how Weegar stacks up, but I’ll tout Andersson’s on-ice excellence, versatility and experience within the Flames’ system and being developed under this particular GM and coach. If you want somebody who understands Huska or Conroy and can work well with them, Andersson could be a really good candidate for the gig.
The 2021 design was everything the Flames and the City wanted in a building design, crammed onto a seven acre site. The new site is 10 acres, so everything will be less crammed in. That’ll hopefully result in a better design.
They’re working on the agreements right now and they should have the development manager in place reasonably soon, potentially by early fall. Depending on how much of the previous design can be re-used and how much needs to be re-done, we could see renders as early as the end of 2023. That said, these are guesses, and we’ll have more concrete details to discuss regarding timelines and whatnot sometime in mid-to-late August (or early September).
I would arguably probably not, as I think the Flames’ skills project better onto the ice than the gridiron. But be sure to check out Live From The 55 with Danny Austin on the FlamesNation YouTube channel (and wherever you get your podcasts) for all your CFL news and analysis.

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