The Calgary Flames over-performed in October and now appear to be coming back to Earth. This shouldn’t be too surprising to anyone, as this squad was expected to continue to struggle through the 2013-14 NHL season. While they have the pieces to put together a few wins here and there, general manager Jay Feaster is no longer deluded into thinking that this is a playoff team.
As such, Feaster could look to sell off some more of his veteran parts once the NHL trade deadline draws near.
Feaster, along with his boss, Brian Burke, work hard to keep tabs on who is available on the trade market. The way things are going, the Flames will be soon enough be making some moves, most likely trading away players with the likes of Michael Cammalleri, Lee Stempniak, Matt Stajan and Chris Butler likely candidates.
Cammalleri could be of particular interest to a Stanley Cup contender. While he is owed $6 million this year (the final of his contract), that number continues to drop as the season wears on. He’s a proven playoff performer and has been among the most consistent threats on a not-particularly threatening Calgary offense.
While he does have the ability to submit a list of seven teams he won’t accept a trade to, that still leaves the Flames with plenty of other options. This isn’t Roberto Luongo saying “I’ll go to Florida… and just Florida” kind of stuff.
Stempniak and Stajan are the kind of depth additions that can be the difference between winning and losing if injuries strike, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see them end up somewhere else by the deadline as well. Who will have more picks at the upcoming draft? Calgary or the Buffalo Sabres?
The two teams appear to be in a race, and the Flames could take over the count after unloading more of their veterans.