3 free agents who will not return to the Calgary Fire in the 2022-23 season - Sports1
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3 free agents who will not return to the Calgary Fire in the 2022-23 season

The 2021-22 season is a revival of the team Calgary Flame, Who currently has a 16-7-6 record. The improvement compared to last season is not so much the change made by general manager Brad Treliving this summer, as it is the improvement in the personal performance of the returning players. Having said that, Trelevant still made some changes this offseason, considering that they have eight pending unrestricted free agents, and he will be forced to do the same in the coming summer. The following are three that are almost guaranteed not to return next season.

Eric Goodbranson

In September of this year, Treleving chose to surprise many people Signed guard Eric Goodbranson To a year of 1.95 million US dollars in transactions. Many people expect young players such as Juuso Valimaki, Oliver Kylington and Connor Mackey to get a chance in the 2021-22 season, but this signing and the signing of Michael Stone seem to indicate otherwise.

Erik Gudbranson, Calgary Flames (Photo: Gerry Thomas/NHLI via Getty Images)

As we now know, both Valimaki and Kylington were able to stay in the big clubs outside the training camp, while Mackey was reassigned to the American Hockey League (AHL). At the same time, considering how long he had to wait for the trade, Good Branson got a pretty lucrative contract, and he has been a frequent visitor to the bottom pair of the Flames.

Although he started the season well, his performance has regressed to the point where it can sometimes become a burden. Considering that the Flames are his sixth team in the past three seasons, this shouldn’t be a big surprise for anyone. This experiment is as expected, unless there is improvement for most of the 2021-22 season, this will be Good Branson’s one and only season in Calgary.

Nikita Zadorov

Another defender who mainly played in the third pair of the Flames is Nikita Zadorov, He was acquired in a deal with the Chicago Blackhawks this summer. Throughout his career, the 26-year-old player has been known for his personal practice, but he has often lost position on the defensive end. Most importantly, his pace may be an issue, and he has almost no offense at the NHL level.

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Zadorov did everything as advertised, he has always been for the Flames. He is not shy about throwing bodies, which can sometimes provide motivation for his team, but sometimes he loses position, which leads to too many scoring opportunities. He won’t be back next season.

Taylor Pitlik

One of the main problems with the Flames last year was that they brought in a few players to fill their third and fourth lines with a one-year contract, but almost no one went according to plan. The same can be said for this season, because forwards like Brad Richardson and Trevor Lewis received a one-year contract from Tre Levine this summer, but it hasn’t changed much.However, by far, the most disappointing thing is Taylor Pitlik, He did not sign a one-year contract, but Obtained in the transaction From the Seattle Sea Monsters, he has only one year left on his contract.

Last season, the one-year players who played for the bottom six of the Flames were not overly capable of scoring or providing physical fitness. Many people think that Pitlik will help in this regard, because he has always been considered an energetic player who will not run around shyly throughout his career.

Tyler Petrick Calgary Fire
Tyler Pitlik, Calgary Flames (Amy Owen / Hockey writer)

Unfortunately, this is not the case. Pitlik has been working hard to make a big impact, which can be proved by the fact that he has only two assists in 24 games this season. Unless the 30-year-old player changes significantly during the remainder of the 2021-22 season, he will not be able to return to Calgary next season.

Not all free agents will disappear

Although this article discusses players that the Flames are unlikely to want to return next season, they have a few pending free agents that they all want and need to do their best to bring them back. The first is Johnny Gaudlow, who scored 37 points in 31 games, which is one of his best seasons so far. The other Fire teams will have more control, because they will all become restricted free agents, but it is very important in Matthew Tkachuk, Andrew Mangiapane and Kellington. Of course it is not easy, but if Treliven can sign all four and replace them with more competent players, then this Fire team may be better in the 2022-23 season.



Colton Pankwe

Colton Pankiw, a former Jr. hockey player, now provides his knowledge of the game through writing. For the past two years, he has been a very active and reliable source of The Hockey Writers. He is a qualified writer for the Calgary Flames, but has also done feature reports for other teams throughout the league. Other writing contributions include: White Oil, NHLtradetalk.com, and Markerzone.com. Colton is also the co-host of both Oiler working overtime and Flame confrontation podcast.Any interview request or content information can be submitted through him Twitter. Take a look at his work here.


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