Saturday, May 30, 2015

10 Options for the Calgary Flames in Free Agent Frenzy

Charles Leclaire - USA Today Sports

Hello, and welcome to Glengarry Glencross, a blog devoted to covering the NHL in general, but specifically Calgary Flames and the Toronto Maple Leafs. Here, you can find daily - well, maybe daily - coverage of the big topics in the NHL, whether it be the Stanley Cup Playoffs, Free Agent Frenzy, the NHL Draft, the Trade Deadline, or the next #PodiumWatch. Whether it be the middle of December or the middle of August, I’ll always be here with a mix of humour, blogging disguised as journalism, and random thoughts that I won’t be able to find another place to put.

The subject of my first-ever article is one covered endlessly thus far - free agency, and who the Calgary Flames and Toronto Maple Leafs should target.

The Calgary Flames and Toronto Maple Leafs were two of the NHL’s biggest surprises this past season - in the case of the Flames, it was because they jumped from virtually the bottom of the barrel, standings-wise, to the second round of the playoffs seemingly before you could say “unsustainable”, and for the Leafs, it was, to be frank, because they surprised us with a glimmer of hope and were still in the playoff picture by Christmas, and then took away that hope by firing the coach that had gotten them there. Or, as is the case with the Leafs, a “normal scenario”.

These two teams are not without their respective needs, however - the Leafs certainly have more, but the Flames also have their fair share. These voids can be filled in free agency, however, and both teams have multiple players that they can target.

Calgary Flames

The Calgary Flames need some more depth on the right wing, as well as a couple of defensemen to shore up the third pairing.

Who they should target:


Defence


Mike Green


I know, I know, I know. Green’s 30 at the beginning of the 2015-16 season, but he’s still in the early phase of his prime and can still prove a potent offensive threat on the Flames’ blueline. Signing Green also allows Calgary to move Dennis Wideman for potential help on the wing.

New contract: 4 years, 23 million - AAV 5.75

Some may call this an overpay, but with the shorter term, Green will command more. It is a slight paycut from his current, expiring deal, but Green may take a hometown discount - he is from Calgary.

Other options: 

Andrej Sekera - didn’t really get much of a chance with the Kings after his rental acquring due to injury, but is still a good offensive defenseman.

Christian Ehrhoff - the Penguins likely won’t resign this oft-injured defenceman. Is coming off of a disappointing “show-me” year with a 1-year contract, so may take less to prove himself.

Jeff Petry - a likely target for the Flames, Petry flourished after leaving Edmonton for Montreal.

Cody Franson - not my first choice, but is still a good puck-mover and relatively young.


Forward


Michael Frolik


Frolik is coming off a year with the Winnipeg Jets where he helped them reach the post-season with a strong performance in the regular season where he scored 42 points for the second consecutive season. Frolik finished fifth among all Jets forwards in points in 2014-15, and could be a good fit on the second or third line, depending on where David Jones slots in next year.

New contract: 3 years, 11.5 million - AAV 3.83

Frolik commanded 3.3 million last season and, with his good performance, should be able to secure a deal with a longer term this season. He is still only 27, so the Kladno native should still have some good years in him as he enters his prime.

Other options: 

Justin Williams - he’s older, and would likely play on the third line, but has good experience and was another player who wasn’t wholly awful like the rest of the Kings last year.

Mike Ribeiro - proved he still has plenty of gas in the tank after a very strong showing in Nashville last year, plus he wouldn’t be able to kill the Flames anymore.

Carl Soderberg - good, young, and a chance to take advantage of a cash-strapped Bruins squad.

Curtis Glencross - hey, why not? Eh, just kidding.
No, really, Treliving, don’t do it. Please - and if you do, lowball him hard.


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