All signs point to the Calgary Flames being sellers as the trade deadline approaches, and bidding on forward Lee Stempniak is reportedly picking up heading into the Olympic roster freeze. Trades can be made up until 3 PM on Friday, but transactions will be halted at that point.
This has created something of a miniature trade deadline, with several squads looking to shed rental players prior to the Winter Games. Stempniak is the kind of depth forward that can help Stanley Cup contenders down the stretch the salary cap being artificially low this season has created a seller’s market for affordable help like Stempniak.
Eklund over at HockeyBuzz.com recently reported that several teams have made calls in regards to the eight-year NHL veteran. Among those squads: the Boston Bruins, Chicago Blackhawks, Montreal Canadiens, New Jersey Devils, Detroit Red Wings and Los Angeles Kings.
That’s quite a market for Stempniak and his 23 points, but he’s shown in years gone by that he can produce at a solid clip in the proper role. You’ll be hard pressed to find a playoff team that couldn’t use a guy like him in their bottom-six, and it wouldn’t be at all surprising to see the Flames come out on top in a deal involving the forward.
His two-year deal expires at the end of this season and carries a (constantly diminishing) $2.5 million cap hit according to CapGeek.com. Will Calgary see fit to move him prior to the Olympic freeze, or will they hang onto their assets until their current winning streak comes to an end?
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