The Flames have had a busy summer up front with Jonathan Huberdeau and Nazem Kadri coming in to help replace Johnny Gaudreau and Matthew Tkachuk. Even with that type of turnover at the top of their roster, GM Brad Treliving told Thomas Drance of The Athletic (subscription link) that the team is still looking to add to their forward group for next season. Calgary is one of the few teams that still has a bit of salary cap flexibility with a little over $2MM in space, per CapFriendly with RFA center Adam Ruzicka still to re-sign and Cody Eakin already in on a tryout. While Treliving won’t be able to add an impact forward with what space he has left, an upgrade to their bottom six should be on the table.
More from the Western Conference:
- Blues GM Doug Armstrong has acted quickly to extend Robert Thomas and Jordan Kyrou but don’t expect that to be the case for any other of their pending free agents. As NHL.com’s Lou Korac relays (Twitter link), the current plan is to let the season play out and then see what they can do on the extension front. Veterans Ryan O’Reilly and Vladimir Tarasenko highlight their list of pending unrestricted free agents but with the raises for Thomas and Kyrou a year away from coming into effect, they’re going to have a hard team keeping their veteran core intact.
- The Canucks are leaning towards using Elias Pettersson back at center this season instead of keeping him on the left wing, notes Sportsnet’s Iain MacIntyre. Head coach Bruce Boudreau feels that Vancouver’s additions up front – including wingers Ilya Mikheyev and Andrei Kuzmenko – give them the potential for three scoring lines. If Pettersson does indeed shift back down the middle, that will only boost his value heading into extension talks next summer as centers often cost a premium to sign long-term.