The 2023 offseason has been a monumental one for the Calgary Flames, and we’re nonetheless weeks away from the draft and free company. New basic supervisor Craig Conroy has a troublesome contract state of affairs to take care of on his palms, with six essential gamers at present headed for unrestricted free company in 2024. A choice on what to do with a kind of gamers has been made for him, although, as Pierre LeBrun of TSN and The Athletic reports defenseman Noah Hanifin is unwilling to signal an extension with the staff and is probably going destined for a commerce.
Now 26, the top-flight defender has simply shy of 600 NHL video games below his belt and is getting into the ultimate season of a six-year, $4.95M common annual worth contract signed with Calgary in 2018. He’s had some very stable seasons in Alberta, together with three 30-point campaigns and a firmly cemented top-four function all through his time there. Traditionally a optimistic two-way pressure, Hanifin had some vital defensive struggles for the primary time in 2022-23, seeing his superior metrics dip barely beneath the league common.
At his age and together with his expertise, although, that’s doubtless an outlier. Whichever staff Hanifin finally ends up with can anticipate to pay him north of $6M on a long-term deal and get its cash’s value. He’s one of many extra constant gamers from 12 months to 12 months within the league, actually by no means having large offensive or defensive lapses and sustaining stable (however not elite) numbers in heavy utilization. His 0.48 factors per sport are tied for forty seventh amongst defensemen with at the least 100 video games performed during the last three seasons, and his 21:32 common time on ice is 57th utilizing the identical parameters.
Competent on each the ability play and penalty kill, the left-shot defender shouldn’t be a real No. 1 defenseman however nonetheless a high-end, first-pairing caliber participant. He could not fetch as a lot in a commerce with the Flames as he would if he have been a right-shot defenseman, however the Flames ought to nonetheless anticipate (and obtain) at the least a first-round choose for his providers on the commerce market – even when he makes it to the commerce deadline and is offered as a rental.
With a steep commerce market this offseason, although, shifting him now’s prone to get Calgary some good worth with extra time for a commerce accomplice to barter an extension. Given the Flames have pointed playoff aspirations subsequent season, it will behoove them to unencumber Hanifin’s cap hit so he may very well be changed by way of free company or a separate commerce later in the summertime.
In 81 video games this season, Hanifin registered seven targets and 38 factors in 81 contests, recording a career-high common ice time of twenty-two:39 within the course of.