Frank Seravalli lists the Flames as deadline buyers, mentions Vladimir Tarasenko, James van Riemsdyk, and Max Domi as possible targets
Photo credit:David Berding-USA TODAY Sports
By Cam Lewis10 months ago
Last year, the Flames put together a 10-game winning streak in February and established themselves as the team to beat in the Pacific Division.
With Johnny Gaudreau on an expiring contract, general manager Brad Treliving unsurprisingly leaned in and made multiple moves to improve the Flames ahead of the trade deadline. He acquired Tyler Toffoli in mid-February to give the team a proven sniper and then he added Calle Jarnkrok and Ryan Carpenter to solidify the team’s depth a few weeks later.
What about this year? Insider Frank Seravalli expects Treliving to again be aggressive in improving the Flames with mid-season additions, as he’s listed them as a trade deadline buyer at Daily Faceoff…
The Flames didn’t make all of that noise last summer to meekly stand pat at this year’s trade deadline. With the right moves, a boost in shooting percentage and better play from Markstrom, the Flames might actually be better positioned to go on a playoff run this spring than they were last year.Calgary has the cap space to make just about any trade work. With a little over $4 million in projected space, even most of the high cap hit players in the league can be had with the help of a 50 percent salary retention, which mostly eliminates the need for a third-party broker and can keep the acquisition cost down. That number can grow depending on Kylington’s status.Here’s the thing: With extensions kicking in for Huberdeau, Weegar and Vladar, they likely can’t afford to be taking on players with term on their contracts. That means they are more than likely going to be shopping in the rental market, preferably for a winger who can put the puck in the net at a high rate.
The Flames own a 23-16-9 record and currently sit in eighth place in the Western Conference with three Central Division teams within six points of them in the standings.
Other than Jacob Markstrom going from a Vezina Trophy-calibre goalie to a below-average one, the biggest difference between last year’s Flames and this year’s Flames is the team’s scoring punch, which isn’t all that surprising given they lost a 42- and 40-goal scorer in the off-season.
With that in mind, Seravalli noted that Treliving’s top priority for improving the Flames ahead of the deadline will be adding a top-six winger with speed who can score goals. The names he mentioned as possible fits are Vladimir Tarasenko, James van Riemsdyk, Ivan Barbashev, and Max Domi.
Option A: Tarasenko is ready to move, having never rescinded his trade request from 2021, but holds all the cards with a full ‘no-trade.’ He was a critical cog in St. Louis’ 2019 run to the Stanley Cup with 11 goals in 26 playoff games.Option B: He certainly isn’t a burner, but ‘JvR’ is one of the most reliable goal scorers available at the deadline. His acquisition cost will also likely be reasonable given his $7 million cap hit. He’s one way for the Flames to add without breaking the bank on future assets.Option C: It was only a year ago that Barbashev crushed out a career-best 26 goals and 60 points. He is 27 and has a cap hit ($2.25 million) that would leave room for Calgary to also add on the back endOption D: What’s clear is Domi plays his best hockey when he’s at center. He’s having one of the better seasons of his career, flirting with the pace of his 28-goal campaign from 2018-19. But he’s also played a lot of wing in his career and provides nice versatility if the Flames run into injury issues down the middle.
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