Business got a whole lot more difficult for the Calgary Flames on the weekend, setting the stage for a free agency period in which the club should be a mere spectator.
The recent announcement of a $1.5 million reduction to the previously projected salary cap of $83 million further handcuffed a Flames club held hostage by Matthew Tkachuk’s inevitable windfall.
General manager Brad Treliving now has just $12.95 million left with which to sign his opening night goaltenders, which includes David Rittich and fellow restricted free agents Sam Bennett, Andrew Mangiapane and Tkachuk.
A deal for Tkachuk is expected to eat up anywhere from $7 million to $10 million a year, depending on term and what the stellar class of the NHL’s star-studded RFAs start signing for before him.
Expect the bar to continue to be raised for Tkachuk this summer by RFAs like Mitch Marner, Brayden Point, Mikko Rantanen, Sebastien Aho, Kyle Connor, Patrik Laine and Brock Boeser, amongst others, who will undoubtedly make Treliving’s job even harder.