The depth chart behind #1 & #2 defencemen Bouwmeester and Giordano is looking mighty thin. On the LW there’s TJ Brodie sitting #6…. Although he has skills is he ready for the big time? After Gio there’s Sarich with that veteran presence, Babchuk who’s played the easiest defensive minutes, and a bunch of new names like Butler, Mikkelson, Carson…..
Some serious question marks remain on D for the Flames, one thing is for sure, we’ll be average at best back there, coupled with ‘average’ at the forward ranks (albeit with quite a few 20 goal scorers) and you have an average team right up against the cap.
Back to some signings. Mikkelson accepted his qualifying offer and will be back. The Flames also signed Derek Smith off the free agent market to a two way contract, he’ll play in the minors unless we have some serious injuries.
Feaster padded the minors with the signing of tough guy Leblond out of NJ. HEre’s where you get a head scratcher. NJ wanted him gone, and Feaster paid the price with a 5th round pick. Why?
On the open market you can get a guy who can’t score or skate, yet fight, for free. Feaster’s card was, “getting a guy hard to play against and who can skate”. Leblond does one thing and that’s fight. He’ll add much needed toughness in the AHL but that was a steep price to pay.
Rounding out the singings was Max Reinhart who gets a three year entry level contract. I’m also perplexed by these kinds of contracts. Although they don’t count against the cap, these players really get 900K to play in the minors…..sweet gig.
Here are some fights from Leblond: