MAJOR: Flames Eyeing Ridiculous Extension for Key Centre

Published October 5, 2023 at 11:58

It's evident that the Calgary Flames might have to offer a hefty sum to retain Elias Lindholm. The anticipated contract, however, raises eyebrows.

Will Lindholm's AAV Begin With a Nine?

According to expert Elliotte Friedman, the Flames might need to shell out around $9 million to renew a contract with center Elias Lindholm.

One night in Calgary has convinced me of one thing: the mood among the Flames is much better than last season. Very, very different vibe — in a good way. Mikael Backlund's extension is a great sign, and others are positively reconsidering their futures. But I don't get the sense anything is close, yet. And it's possible Elias Lindholm's number is going to be higher than I initially thought — in the $9-million range.

- Elliotte Friedman

Lindholm is undoubtedly a skilled player. However, when assessing him, he isn't exactly a premier first-line center. Last season saw him rack up 64 points. Even with his exceptional two-way game, he mirrors a player more like Ryan O'Reilly than, for instance, Aleksandar Barkov.

Committing $9M to him might mean the Flames are heavily investing in a team core that's growing older – one that might soon be among the priciest in the league.

A Risky Decision They Might Have to Commit To

Attracting talent to Calgary is challenging – between the aging arena (due for replacement, but that's years away) and harsh winters. They can't boast the cultural allure of cities like Toronto or Montreal, nor do they have the pull of star players like Connor McDavid. It's safe to say, a struggling western Canadian team doesn't top many free agents' lists.

Although it seems like a significant overspend, the Flames might have to go down this path. The hope will be that this decision stands the test of time.

As Read on Markerzone - Flames Set to Massively Overpay Key Center
October 5   |   247 answers
MAJOR: Flames Eyeing Ridiculous Extension for Key Centre

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