Potential trade partner: Calgary Flames

jets antti raanta
John Woods/The Canadian Press via AP

As the expansion draft nears, we are going to begin hearing rumors of trades with Vegas to protect players and/or bribe Vegas into taking a contract. We’ve seen one such rumor publicized already, and it’s likely we will see more. But we will also begin seeing trades made by clubs who are in a bad position with protected players. Anaheim is one such team, as is Minnesota.

But not all trades are about protecting players. Enter the Calgary Flames. Both of their goaltenders –Chad Johnson, Brian Elliott– are UFAs, and neither played well last season. Elliott was supposed to stabilize their goaltending situation, but that did not work out as planned. As such, they definitely need a goaltender. Enter Antti Raanta.

Raanta had himself a solid season with the Rangers, putting up fantastic numbers and certainly earning himself extra starts. He has entered Cam Talbot territory, where he has value as a potential starter. There is value in someone like Raanta, who is more of a proven entity than any of the options in free agency. He’s also cheaper than some of the other options on the trade market.

The one thing we’ve learned is that Benoit Allaire can turn almost any goaltender into at least a capable backup net minder for a short period of time. So in Raanta, the Rangers have a valuable asset that can be used to get some draft picks. For Calgary, they wouldn’t need to worry about protecting him, since they have the spot available.

When it comes to the expansion draft, the Flames aren’t really in a bad spot. It’s a rare opportunity for a team to be able to trade for a needed asset before the expansion draft, and Calgary is certainly going to look to take advantage of that.

Of course, there are other ways to get Raanta, such as bribing Vegas to take him and then trading for him. But the most direct route is a trade between these two teams. There’s a match here, to send Raanta to Calgary for a few picks. Buckle up folks, I hope you’re ready for chaos.

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  • Yep, I’ve heard this a little bit. Dougie Hamilton? He would cost a lot. Stepan or Hayes (for Johnny Hockey) and Raanta for Hamilton???. I have heard Ranger fans ask for Sam Bennett as well.

    • Johnny hockey going one way and Hayes coming the other way is not likely. I could see him pushing hard to have his buddy back with him in Calgary. I would give Stepan, Kreider and a pick for him though

      • Are you serious? If you did Stepan, Kreider, and a pick for Dougie Hamilton (who is, according to sources, a complete moron) you’d get one of those responses like on EA NHL where the other teams GM says, when accepting a trade offer, “My boss would fire me if I did not accept this trade offer.”

      • So, let me get this straight; you’d like to trade Kreider, Stepan, AND a pick for a guy whose stock absolutely plummeted last season (not to mention the persistent rumors regarding his intellectual capacity)…

        You’re joking, right…?

        It’s times like this that, strangely enough, I look back at the crap Dolan infamously spewed out regarding Sather being ‘GM for life’ and think, “wow, it could be so much worse”….

          • Ah, sorry, seems like I misread your post.

            While that’s (closer) to being a fair deal, I personally would be very reluctant to trade Kreider.

            He took a step forward this year, and despite the negativity, his progression isn’t out of line for what you might expect a power forward to do.

            I agree that it would be interesting to see Hayes & Gaudreu play on the same line….

          • Yeah that was by impulse, I want to keep around Kreider while assuming that one day he’ll just “get it”. I could still turn him over for a line that consist of Johnny hockey and JT with Hayes down the middle. I’m more pro Hayes in production wise and for his overall 200 ft game so anything that sets him up to succeed is the best route imo. Flames would never do it so this and even if I meant Hamliton it’s not like I’m pulling the strings, my idea’s go just as much as the next one on here.

  • if Calgary has parts to give us we will talk we will need a backup goalie if we lose Raanta and Dougie Hamilton would help the defense

    • Calgary doesn’t have a lot of depth on defence Amy, I can’t believe the Flames would move him. Raanta is sought after because he is a very good goalie. A trade chip indeed, as he is cap friendly but likely he will go for a 2nd round draft pick.

    • Fleury waived his NMC to be exposed in the draft. Pittsburgh won’t trade him before then. Not saying it won’t happen, just saying the timing with the draft may be off.

      • Speaks volumes about what kind of guy he must be. If he does end up in LV, I’ll certainly be hoping he stacks up some non-divisional W’s.

  • How is Stepan this great two way RHD center but can’t bring us back anything in a trade? People always say oh but we would have to throw in something else. Because he sucks. I would want Sam Bennett and a young RHD defensiveman.

    • So, who said a guy who has been in the top 25 in NHL scoring among centers for the past few years “sucks”? And that he “wouldn’t bring back anything in a trade”?

      Are you joking too?

      • Hear this I can easily name 30 plus centers that are better. In the finals Pittsburgh of course has two and Nashville has two centers that are better. When he is traded you will see him drop off the face of the NHL. We here put to much in the wrong places. He sucks. His points come because of deployment not because he drives play. I want goals and guys who set up goals and he’s nether. I’m done with the Stepan talk until the trade is made. If he’s still on the team nxt season there’s no cup a coming. Well unless two superstars from Pittsburgh are a coming

        • “Hear this I can easily name 30 plus centers that are better. In the finals Pittsburgh of course has two and Nashville has two centers that are better. When he is traded you will see him drop off the face of the NHL”


          To be fair to Eddie, I’ve got to mention that you’re pulling a strawman on me.

          I didn’t say I disagreed that his offensive production is mostly the product of his deployment & PP time. I think we’d be making a tremendous mistake, in lieu of our potential centers next season, to not trade him! We agree over this!

          I’m saying that, even though he clearly puts up 50 something points due to the aforementioned…. let me put it this way; suppose they signed you (or me, lol), and tossed either of us out there for 20 (immensely painful) minutes a night. Think either of us would get 50+ points? A year? All while having an appropriate (not a bargain, not a ripoff; fair value) contract?

          He has value… a lot, actually. Hopefully Gorton makes us all smile.

      • To answer your question. Sports illustrated .

        And I quote,

        Derek Stepan, Rangers: With Derick Brassard off to Ottawa, Stepan will get the chance to go from a 1A to the top job. He’s coming off a career-high 22 goals, but it’s hard to get worked up about the potential of a player who has yet to top 60 points in a season and whose career face-off percentage is below 45%.

        And I agree , it’s hard to get excited about a player as your first line center who can’t crack 60 or be so bad at faceoffs.

        It’s nice to see him wedged between kadri and zetterberg. But would you consider both of them first line centers right now?

        Maybe the problem isn’t that we are underestimating him but more there is a huge gap of talent between the top 10 1st line centers and the rest of the pack. Maybe we need to make a move for a top 10 center in the league vs a 1st line center.

        • “Maybe the problem isn’t that we are underestimating him but more there is a huge gap of talent between the top 10 1st line centers and the rest of the pack. Maybe we need to make a move for a top 10 center in the league vs a 1st line center”


          This is a good point…. although, to be honest, I’m not sure if we have what it takes to land a player of that caliber without making the team significantly worse overall.

          We lack the young talent to replace certain guys on this roster.

          • We don’t have to replace him just bump everyone up a spot. Now go out and find a 4th line center. If it was me I’ll move JT to center where I think he belongs anyway. Boo or Fogarty can man the spot also..

      • If you’re breaking it up into fifths, he’s in that bottom group, so yaay, let’s stay married to that guy!!

  • Just forget it. Stepan, Girardi and Staal are all part of the 2017-18 NY Rangers. We will tweak this team with a free agent defenseman and a few 4th liners and we are golden. We have AV at the helm and some of the best bench leadership any team can have, so why change what obviously works.

    • Yeah, it’s sad. So far Pens got their guy to wave the NMC, Sens at least asked theirs to do the same. Yet, no indication that we’ll do that either

      • As for M A Fleury, he sees the hand writing on the wall, and wants to play, so he waived his clause. If our twins would do the same, we would be sitting pretty, but time will tell.

      • Teams don’t have to announce who they offered an out until Sunday morning, so maybe the Rangers got consent from both of the Twins!!!!!

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