FlamesNation Mailbag: With a month until the deadline, we discuss the future, trades and future trades

Photo credit:Mike Gould
Ryan Pike
4 months ago
The Calgary Flames made a big, big trade on Wednesday, when they sent pending unrestricted free agent centre Elias Lindholm to Vancouver for a bunch of assets. As the Flames seemingly kick off their retool, fans and media wonks alike ask “Hey, so what’s next?”
To the mailbag!
In short: yes.
My read on the situation is this: if they’re going on a retool rather than a rebuild, they’re going to try to explore parallel paths: finding youngsters in the draft with offensive upside, and finding players like Yegor Sharangovich that were arguably under-utilized in their previous NHL stops that could blossom in Calgary. So I would suggest that the Flames will look at bottom-six – probably primarily third-line – forwards around the NHL that could explode offensively with larger roles.
I would suspect the club’s analytics group has already built out a wish list for Craig Conroy to explore.
Coincidentally, after I built out my list of centres for the Flames to look at, I watched the majority of the Calgary Wranglers’ 3-1 win over the Ontario Reign, which featured Alex Turcotte. And yeah, I think you may be onto something. If you’re the Kings, are you willing to send Turcotte to Calgary for Dan Vladar? If you’re the Flames, would you rather have Turcotte than a second or third-round pick?
As a disclaimer: this is entirely my speculation, but you can squint and see a fit without having to use too much imagination.
So here’s what I know: Trevor Zegras is a really talented hockey player, and I feel like this season is an aberration in what should be a long and productive career.
But the Flames are in the early stages of embarking on their retool. They should be accumulating picks and prospects right now. While Zegras is quite good, he feels to me like the last piece of the puzzle, rather than the puzzle piece you build around, if that make sense. He’s the Dougie Hamilton, to put it another way. If you think you’re a Trevor Zegras away from winning a Stanley Cup, you use multiple first-round picks to get him. But if you’re not quite there yet, you really shouldn’t expend those assets.
But if the price is lower than that? I wouldn’t necessarily opposed depending on what else they have going on. Spending multiple first-rounders on a guy that might not have the tools to be The Guy is a bit too much.

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