Heading into this year’s trade deadline, the Calgary Flames sit in largely the same position they have been over the last few seasons: not quite in, and not quite out. As a result, a few familiar questions have cropped up once again.
- Are the Calgary Flames going to trade Jarome Iginla?
- Are the Calgary Flames going to trade Miikka Kiprusoff?
- Are the Calgary Flames going to finally acquire a first-line center?
The club has been fairly adamant all season that Jarome Iginla is not going anywhere – full-stop. That said, the team has not been as vocal about quashing speculation regarding Miikka Kiprusoff. That said, while the team is suddenly flush with netminders (with the recent acquisition of KHL standout Karri Ramo and the NHL trial for prospect Leland Irving), nobody has emerged as an immediate successor for Kiprusoff, and the veteran has a no-trade clause. A move can’t definitively be ruled out, but it seems unlikely to happen right now.
As for a first-line center, the Flames went big-game hunting over the summer and tried to acquire Brad Richards. It didn’t quite work, but it’s likely that the Flames are still in the market for a pivot. That said, it’s yet to be seen if they have the assets to acquire such a player – as the team would have to move contracts (and likely prospects and picks) to bring in someone like Richards. Team management has been hesitant to move out future assets in an attempt to bring in high-end players – terming it “deficit spending” – and the club is already without its second round picks in the next two drafts.
In terms of what’s likely to happen, don’t expect Calgary to make any big moves, particularly after the blockbuster trade that saw Michael Cammalleri return to the Flames. However, general manager Jay Feaster is likely to continue to tinker with his roster in order to improve it, so a few minor moves can be expected. The Flames have a bevy of blueliners and goaltenders in the organization, and Feaster may attempt to move some of them (particularly pending free agents Cory Sarich and Scott Hannan) for draft picks or prospects.