Saturday, January 16, 2021

Numbers game: Flames finalize roster, aiming for financial flexibility

Numbers game: Flames finalize roster, aiming for financial flexibility

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“Call it what it is — a guy like Derek Ryan, we think, is going to be an important part of our team right now. But there are cap implications for having him on the taxi squad for certain days, in terms of accumulating cap-space. So I think you’ll see with us, as probably with a number of teams in the league, that you’re trying to maximize your cap-space. That’s the business side.

“As for the taxi squad, they’re not going to have sandwich boards that they wear every day that say, ‘I’m on the taxi squad.’ They’re part of the Calgary Flames.”

Treliving met with Ryan prior to Monday’s waiver-wire exposure, explaining the cost-contortion game-plan to the 34-year-old centre. (Because he’s on a one-way contract, he’ll collect his full wage whether he’s on the taxi squad or main roster. These savings only apply to the league-wide spending limit, not his personal paycheques. Those on two-way deals, however, will receive their AHL salary as spares.) 

Since the Ryan move had been foreshadowed, there were really no surprises when the Flames’ opening-night crew was revealed.

The staffers at the Saddledome — Treliving credited assistant general manager Chris Snow and director of hockey administration Mike Burke as two key number-crunchers — can now let their calculators cool, at least for a day or two.

Treliving & Co. will do their best to accrue cap space, but the priority is accumulating points in the North Division standings.

That’s up to Johnny Gaudreau, Mark Giordano, Matthew Tkachuk, newly-signed netminder Jacob Markstrom and the rest of the on-ice stars.

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