More speculation, more opinions, and more unrestricted free agents who may be on the move before the deadline of March 5th, 2014.
First on the docket, Chris Butler. With 2 points (2 assist) in the last five games and a -16 rating so far this season, I don’t know how much the Flames would get in a trade for Butler, but a trade would free up $1.7 million in cap space. Butler has 10 points in 58 games this season.
Derek Smith will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of this season as well. He’s had one assist in 14 games during his time with the Flames this year and sits at a -10 rating.
Looking ahead, T.J. Brodie will be a restricted free agent at the end of next season. I don’t think the Flames should let him go in a trade because Brodie is still quite young and skilled in spite of being only 23 years old. When he’s hot, he’s hot and creates plays which result in goals by himself or other teammates. At times, Brodie has been known to make colossal mistakes, but they are few and far between. More often than not, he is dependable and works well within the team. With 20 points in 58 games this season, I think Calgary should hold onto him while he develops in the next couple years.
There’s no doubt that the Flames defense needs work, but with the resigning of Kris Russell for three years, they are well on their way to establishing a solid blue line with depth. With Mark Giordano leading the way, the Calgary Flames have a strong base with which to work during the rebuild.
*information about contracts taken from capgeek.com