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TSN’s Insider Trading reports Calgary Flames are ‘listening’ on their pending free agents

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Photo credit:© Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports
Ryan Pike
3 months ago
It’s an interesting time for the Calgary Flames. The club went into their game on Tuesday night against the Montreal Canadiens with a 4-8-2 record, facing an uphill battle to get themselves into the playoff hunt. And the club is facing a bit of an existential reckoning, with several key players as pending unrestricted free agents – and pending UFA Nikita Zadorov requesting a trade earlier this week.
On TSN’s Insider Trading on Tuesday, their panel had some interesting things to say about the state of the Flames right now.
After briefly discussing Zadorov’s situation, Pierre LeBrun briefly discussed the Flames’ broader situation with their pending free agents:
“What teams are telling us is that the Flames are listening on the other pending UFAs as well: Chris Tanev, Noah Hanifin, Elias Lindholm. The Flames are ready for a roster reset here. Now, Hanifin almost signed an extension last month. Close to $60 million was the extension on the table, but he decided he wanted to wait and think about things and now that ship has sailed.”
(Ryan’s math: a $60 million contract over eight years would carry a $7.5 million AAV, so likely the deal on the table was a little bit south of that – perhaps around $7.25 million.)
The Flames’ current roster features four major pending UFAs (Lindholm, Hanifin, Zadorov and Tanev), a few less prominent pending UFAs (A.J. Greer, Dennis Gilbert and Nick DeSimone) and a couple pending UFAs on the injured list (Kevin Rooney and Oliver Kylington). The cap hits of the pending UFAs on the NHL roster at present add up to just over $24 million.
Meanwhile, Darren Dreger noted that if the Flames look to change organizational focus to a rebuild, some veterans might not want to stick around. He specifically named Nazem Kadri as somebody that might want to be elsewhere if that occurs.
“[Kadri] wants to stay in Calgary. He wants to win with the Flames. But if the Flames as an organization progress to a rebuild, he’s not interested in that and I think that there’d be others that are in a similar situation.”
The 33-year-old Kadri is in the second year of a seven-year deal he signed in the 2022 off-season that carries a $7 million AAV. Per Cap Friendly, his deal carries a no-move clause through 2025-26, then a modified no-trade clause for the final three seasons.
As we’ve heard in other recent reports, the TSN panel noted that the Flames are in no hurry to make moves. The trade deadline for the 2023-24 season is Friday, March 8, 2024.

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