NHL Rumors: Should the Flames Sell High on Jacob Markstrom?

On the latest edition of the TSN Talking Point, TSN Analyst Martin Biron breaks down why the Calgary Flames should sell high on goaltender Jacob Markstrom.

** NHLRumors.com transcription

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Martin Biron: “I absolutely think that the Flames should sell high on Jacob Markstrom before the trade deadline, and I know that may be an unpopular opinion, especially in and around Calgary, because the Flames are only one point back of the St. Louis Blues for a wild card spot.

Now let’s look at it. St. Louis has two games in hand. The LA Kings are two points up on the Calgary Flames, and they have three in hand, and the Flames are only on pace for 85 points this year. That is not gonna get it done to get in the playoffs. I know they can get hot and get in. Are they really a Stanley Cup contender?

Obviously, you have to look at the future of the Flames, not just that this season. They’ve already traded Elias Lindholm. They traded Nikita Zadorov. They have Chris Tanev and Noah Hanifin, that will probably be on the move. So, for me, if you’re going to be this, this rebuild on the fly, your biggest asset to get a return is Jacob Markstrom.

Why? Well, he’s got two years left at $6 million. That is a very good number for a goaltender and a number one goaltender that’s playing at the level of Jacob Markstrom right now. And there’s gonna be teams that are going to be calling and will offer a lot in return for Jacob Markstrom.

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Now I know he has a no-movement clause. So, ultimately, this may be a moot point, right?  Because Jacob Markstrom may say, No, I don’t want to go anywhere. But let’s put that aside. If the Flames had the opportunity to move Jacob Markstrom, I think they would be getting the biggest return, and is the number one goaltender on my list. And by far the number-one goaltender on the list.

If you look at the TSN Trade Bait Board right now, Jake Allen, okay. You have Kappo Kahkonen in San Jose, you have Marc-Andre Fleury. I don’t think that any of those goaltenders are at the level of Jacob Markstrom. So, if you need a standout number-one goaltender to make a difference in your season and to give you a chance to win the Cup, I think you’re making the call now.

You also have to look at the Flames have Dan Vladar, who has another year left that 2.2 million when they gave him that two year contract extension. They believed that he could play at a high level. We saw last year at some point in the season when Markstrom was struggling You know, was it Vladar, was it Markstrom, who was the number one goaltender? Maybe you can give Vladar a little bit more playing time down the stretch, and maybe he performs.

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And you obviously have Dustin Wolf, who, in his last three seasons in the AHL, has a .924 save percentage, a .932 save percentage, and a .927 save percentage. He is ready to make the jump to the NHL.  So, will that make a difference this season? Probably not.

But if I am the Flames, I’m looking at trading Jacob Markstrom, getting the biggest return I can on top of Tanev, on top of Hanifin and really start to rebuild on the fly right now.

And so that is why I would sell high on Jacob Markstrom and not hang on to Markstrom and try to do something at a later date.”