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Perfect trade Devils must offer Flames for Jacob Markstrom

Perfect trade Devils must offer Flames for Jacob Markstrom

Originally posted on ClutchPoints

For the second consecutive season, the Calgary Flames missed the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Adding to their frustration, their provincial rivals Edmonton Oilers advanced to the Stanley Cup Final. Meanwhile, their former cornerstone, Matthew Tkachuk, is close to winning the Stanley Cup with the Florida Panthers. In contrast, the player the Flames acquired in the major July 2022 trade has delivered one of the most disappointing performances in the NHL relative to his salary.

Currently, more changes seem imminent for the Flames, managed by general manager and former forward Craig Conroy. One of the most significant moves anticipated this summer is the trade of goaltender Jacob Markstrom, who has reportedly agreed to waive his no-trade clause. There were several reported contenders to land Markstrom at this season’s NHL Trade Deadline, though no deal ultimately materialized.

While Markstrom has been linked to teams such as the Toronto Maple Leafs, Detroit Red Wings and Los Angeles Kings, perhaps the most likely destination he could find himself dealt to is the New Jersey Devils. The Devils have overhauled their goaltending situation recently, trading MacKenzie Blackwood to the San Jose Sharks and later sending Vitek Vanacek to the Sharks at the trade deadline. In his place, they acquired Jake Allen from the Montreal Canadiens and Kaapo Kähkönen from the Sharks in the Vanacek trade.

But what exactly would the perfect trade package that the Devils could offer to the Flames for Markstrom, who still has two seasons left on his current contract, consist of?

Jacob Markstrom was not pleased with the trade rumors during the season

It was clear that based on what he had to say with the Trade Deadline approaching, Markstrom wasn’t pleased with the rumors that his name was constantly popping up in, via Aaron Vickers of NHL.com.

“I mean, I think everyone in here, every player in here, I really respect everything that’s been going on and not going on,” Markstrom said. “How everyone in this room has handled everything, I think it’s been really good. You know, the whole situation and everything, am I happy about that? No, I’m not, and I think it could’ve been handled a lot different from up top.”

Markstrom had been lured from the rival Vancouver Canucks, agreeing to join the Flames with a six-year, $36 million deal in October of 2020 and giving the team their first bonafide starting goaltender since the days of Miikka Kiprusoff. He helped lead them to a postseason series victory over the Dallas Stars in 2022 before eventually falling to the Oilers in Round 2.

The Devils are said to be willing to part with their Round 1 pick

As previously mentioned, the Devils have undergone an extensive restructuring of their goaltending. Presently, Allen has another year on his contract, while they aren’t likely to retain Kähkönen.

Additionally, the Devils have Akira Schmid and Nico Daws in the system, both of whom have wrapped up their respective three-year rookie deals and are pending restricted free agents. And based on what Devils GM Tom Fitzgerald indicated (via Peter Baugh of The Athletic), the plan is to acquire a starter to pair with Allen, meaning that the futures of Schmid and Daws in New Jersey appear murky.

“We’re looking at a potential tandem that maybe could rate up there in the league if I was able to land one of these big fishes,” he explained, while also adding that the trade of Vanacek “allows us to be able to be in on anything next summer and have the flexibility with what we believe will be available in the offseason.”

According to reports, the Flames are reportedly looking to acquire a top prospect and a Round 1 Draft selection in exchange for Markstrom. The Devils hold the 10th overall selection in the upcoming 2024 NHL Draft, a selection that Fitzgerald indicated that he’d be willing to part with to acquire more immediate help:

“Having the tenth overall pick in this upcoming draft gives us many options this off-season,” Fitzgerald said. “We have the opportunity to select a really good young player that our scouting staff likes. Or it can be another bullet in my holster to utilize if a deal presents itself.”

What deal can the Devils offer Calgary to acquire Markstrom?

Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The opportunity could present itself this summer. If Fitzgerald offers Conroy and the Flames their Round 1 pick along with the rights to Schmid in exchange for Markstrom, would Conroy accept, or would he ask Fitzgerald to sweeten the deal a bit?

Additionally, don’t be surprised if Conroy looks to bolster his blue line. He might target a defenseman like John Marino, who has an AAV of $4.4 million and could help offset some of Markstrom’s salary if Calgary doesn’t retain any portion of it.

Should the Flames not be interested in Schmid, Fizgerald very well could elect to trade the rights of Daws or Kähkönen in exchange for Markstrom, which would allow Conroy the flexibility to attempt to negotiate a new contract for either of said goalies that would be paired with Dustin Wolf as the new Flames tandem.

The post Perfect trade Devils must offer Flames for Jacob Markstrom appeared first on ClutchPoints.

Originally posted on ClutchPoints

Published: 1 month ago


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