2024 Calgary Flames Draft Prospect Preview: Cayden Lindstrom

Cayden Lindstrom, Calgary Flames
Cayden Lindstrom, Calgary Flames / Jonathan Kozub/GettyImages

The Calgary Flames have some major needs ahead of the 2024 NHL Draft, but first and foremost, the team need a No. 1 center, a position they have been searching to fill since the days of Joe Nieuwendyk. Fortunately for Craig Conroy and the front office, there are plenty of them available in the upcoming draft, with one potential name being very familiar with the Alberta area. That brings us to our latest draft prospect preview in Medicine Hat Tigers center, Cayden Lindstrom.

Cayden Lindstrom, Medicine Hat Tigers, C

6-foot-3, 210 pounds, 18-years of age.
2023-24 WHL statistics; 32 games played, 27 goals, 19 assists, 46 points, +12 differential.

While Macklin Celebrini is the obvious candidate to go No. 1 overall to the San Jose Sharks, Cayden Lindstrom has been called the best player in this draft by several names, and his talent is summed up succinctly by TSN veteran Craig Button, who compares him to the incredible J.T. Miller.

"“He’s an imposing figure on the ice. He can do it with skill, he can do it with will, he can do it with physical play. You’re not going to be able to deny Cayden Lindstrom when he gets going in a game…he reminds me so much of J.T. Miller.”"

Craig Button, TSN

Not only is he an impressive physical specimen, but he's shown a fantastic ability to score in many different ways, with his net front presence a major positive to his game, with an incredible 27 goals in just 32 games played in 2024 for Medicine Hat. Button puts it perfectly when he says Lindstrom can do it with skill, with will or with physical play, and given the Flames lack of offensive creators, especially in the forward group, he would be an incredible addition.

Unfortunately for the Flames, they won't be the only one that sees the unique combination of size, skill and speed on both ends of the ice, with Montreal, Utah, Ottawa and other teams ahead of them all likely to capitalize and be thrilled to land the BC native.

Reasons to draft Cayden Lindstrom

The reasons to draft Lindstrom have all been laid out in a simple quote from Button, as he has size, skill, speed and the will to make anything happen on the ice, and given the NHL ready body, he could be a star earlier than many in this draft. The Flames biggest need has always been a 1C, with only one or two elite names at the position in the history of the team, and if he's available, he's the perfect idea of what this front office see at the role.

Reasons not to draft Cayden Lindstrom

While no player in the NHL Draft comes without risk, Lindstrom is tailor made as the perfect prospect for the Calgary Flames, but unfortunately, it's highly unlikely that he even falls to No. 9 overall. If that happens however, the Flames will have absolutely no hesitation in drafting him, because unlike other players in the draft, he knows what it's like to play in Alberta, and would quickly become the face of the Flames.

Should the Flames draft Lindstrom at the No. 9 overall position?

Simply put; yes. No matter who is on the board when the Flames are on the clock, Lindstrom has more potential than any other player expected to be available, so if he is passed on by Montreal, Utah, Ottawa and other teams in the top-10, this would be the biggest no-brainer for Conroy, who would get themselves a superstar of the future to build this team around.