There is an ongoing debate about how realistic the rumors of Johnny Gaudreau being traded out of Calgary are. Most insiders seem to think it’s possible, but not likely. That doesn’t mean there won’t be other moves.
A struggling team, there is a lot of talk about how poorly the Calgary Flames are playing during what is now a six-game losing streak. With losing will come speculation changes are afoot and while Gaudreau might be the biggest name mentioned in trade buzz, more likely are trades that could include a player like Travis Hamonic or TJ Brodie. Interestingly, the coach himself may have hinted that he’s expecting such trades in the future if the team doesn’t turn things around.
On the surface, it wouldn’t sound like the comments Flames GM Brad Treliving made means there’s a deal in the works. On Sportsnet radio Friday, Treliving said:
This is a good group that is underperforming. We’ve got to find a way to get back to a being a good group that is performing. It starts with myself. I believe fully in this coaching staff. I don’t stay in tune to the social media world, but the last couple of days I’ve been asked about changes.
Treliving went on to add, “The coaches aren’t going anywhere. Our top players aren’t going anywhere.” Who he didn’t include in his statements were players not considered the top players to the organization and the fact he even singled out his stars suggest he might make smaller less-headline-grabbing deals.
The GM used phrases like “bunker in” and “get into the foxhole” to try and describe his short-term plans, and that may calm the trade speculation waters for a little while. That said, if the Flames don’t start to win, the tune could change quickly.
Hamonic is Likely to Go
Even before the Flames started losing Travis Hamonic was in the rumor mill. The defenseman is an unrestricted free agent at the end of the year and it has been reported he is unwilling to get involved in any extension talks. With a potential shake-up required, moving him makes sense, if for no other reason to jolt the team. Should the Flames continue to slide, and find themselves out of a playoff spot by the deadline, moving Hamonic seems like a given.
As for Gaudreau or the coach? Things would really have to get ugly first.