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What are the potential prices for Flames players?

We have the list, now how much are they worth?

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Yesterday, Darren Dreger broke the list of players that the Flames have "in play" for trade discussion.

Now, this could mean everything or nothing. This could indicate heavy consideration, or someone being mentioned in passing. The only definitive here is that the Flames are confirmed sellers and they will move a lot for futures.

We'll break this down simply, weighing the pros and cons of each player for opposing teams, and the potential prices potential trade partners will offer. But first, let's look at some of the unofficial rules set for this trade deadline.

How's the market?

The Flames have a lot of players to move, but they may not get as nice a return as you'd think. First round picks aren't going to be moved easily, as Elliotte Friedman has said repeatedly. While they were only likely to get a first rounder for Hudler and maybe Russell, it shouldn't be that big of a deal.

We've only had three rental trades thus far, being:

  • Maple Leafs send Shawn Matthias to the Avalanche for Colin Smith and a 2016 4th round pick
  • Maple Leafs send Nick Spaling and Roman Polak to the Sharks for Raffi Torres, a 2017 second rounder, and a 2018 second rounder
  • Sabres send Mike Weber to the Capitals for a 2017 third rounder

All of these trades are wonders to me. The Leafs received three picks, an A/B prospect, and Raffi Torres (the inconsequential piece here) for two meh forwards and a meh defender. The Sabres sent an alright yet low scoring piece to Washington for a third. I wouldn't necessarily consider the Granlund trade a "rental" trade, but even then, the Flames received a pretty good prospect (factor in Jim Benning). The Flames may just yet get a decent return for their prospects.

Who's looking around?

According to Friedman's latest 30 Thoughts, here's the biggest names he's been hearing:

Goalies: Sharks, Flames

Forwards: Blackhawks, Panthers, Kings, Islanders

Defenders: Kings, Canadiens, Penguins, Sharks, Lightning

Of all these teams, the Flames could most likely be talking with the Panthers, Islanders, Penguins, and Sharks. They sent scouts to last night's Penguins-Bruins games, so there may be some action on that front. Scouts have also paid repeated visits to Maple Leafs games, but they aren't buyers this year.

The important takeaway here is that the Flames' best partners are those bubble teams. Those who are confident enough of a playoff spot, but not confident enough of a playoff run. The Flames aren't going to have a lot to show the Hawks or Kings outside of Hudler.

Jiri Hudler:

GP G A P CF% Rel Cap hit
52 9 25 34 1.54% $4,000,000

Potential trading partners: Pretty much everyone. Here's some links about different teams acquiring him: the Kings (one and two), the Blues, Rangers, and Panthers (all one link), the Stars, the Predators (all one article too). Pretty much, any playoff team could use him.

Pros: At age 32, Hudler still has the skillsets of other good players who are much younger. He's a natural scorer....

Cons: ... that hasn't been scoring as much as one would like. He averages around 20 goals per year, but is on pace for about 14 this year. He's been racking up assists this year, but factor in Johnny Gaudreau, that number is slightly meaningless. He's also had a fair bit of injuries this year, including a nagging groin injury. That will keep some teams at bay.

Potential price: Hudler could easily net a first rounder and a prospect if this was any other year. Loui Eriksson, Andrew Ladd, and Mikkel Boedker are all ahead of him on the list, and all of them are slightly better than Hudler. The Jets are reportedly asking for a first rounder and a prospect for Ladd. If that's the bar, then Hudler will go for much lower. Most likely a second rounder and maybe a prospect.

However, if the Flames retain salary, then that price goes back up. They could easily retain at least half and not suffer. They need to maximize return on Hudler (and everyone), and if they have to retain salary to do that, then they have to retain salary.

Kris Russell

GP G A P CF% Rel Cap Hit
51 4 11 15 -5.58% $2,600,000

Potential trading partners: Pittsburgh is definitely interested, according to Bob Mackenzie. The Flames have been looking at Matt Murray as a goaltending saviour, so a potential deal can arise. Colorado, Vancouver, NYI, Dallas, and Tampa Bay have also been listed as targets.

Pros: He can block shots.

Cons: That's pretty much all he can do. Speaking objectively, Russell is not an offensive dynamo, a powerplay quarterback, a big hitter, or any other label. He's a guy who blocks shots and plays exclusively in his own end. Now, you may object to how much weight possession stats should carry (you're wrong, but go on), but Russell is certainly not a possession god. He's a liability, and watching the Flames this season can confirm this (but if other teams value his skill set, who are we to complain?). He's Andrew MacDonald, basically.

He's also been game-to-game over the past few games. He did skate prior to Tuesday's game against the Kings, but didn't play. Knowing his style of play, this will drag the price down.

Potential price: The running joke is that you can tell who has an analytics department based on how much they value Russell. He's currently the highest rated defender on TSN's trade bait board (#6 overall). There are certainly teams interested. If Pittsburgh is high on Russell, then the Flames should try their hardest to get whatever they can out of them, specifically Matt Murray. Jonathan Drouin has been another name mentioned, though that is a highly unrealistic trade. The likely price will be either a second rounder or an A-level prospect. I'd be fine with a third rounder, really.

Joe Colborne

GP G A P CF% Rel Cap hit
50 9 13 22 -0.39% $1,275,000

Potential trading partners: I haven't heard or seen anything significant until this week. A quick Twitter search shows finds an overly enthusiastic Oilers fan wanting him, so let's go with that.

Pros: His 5v5 scoring numbers aren't too bad, and he has some use as a depth player. If a game gets to a shootout, he's your man.

Cons: Despite Hartley's insistence, Colborne isn't really cut out for first or second line duty. His skill in man-advantage situation is his size, and he looks lost half the time he is on the ice. Slightly better Markus Granlund.

Potential price: His inclusion on this list makes me think the Flames are trying to use him as a sweetener for a deal. There are plenty of other targets out there for depth scoring rather than Colborne. 4th round pick at best (unless we also send him to the Canucks, then we would get Bo Horvat).

Josh Jooris

GP G A P CF% Rel Cap hit
40 4 4 8 -0.74% $975,000

Potential trading partners: No names. He's the biggest surprise on this list.

Pros: He's a quiet defensive genius and a penalty killing stalwart.

Cons: His offensive production has gone down the drain, unfortunately. While his P/60 is about the same, it doesn't show in the counting numbers which are more valued than possession numbers.

Potential price: Like Colborne, he is likely a sweetener in any deal. Alone, he is worth a third, but could easily be talked down into a fifth (don't trade Jooris).

Jonas Hiller

Record SV% GAA Cap hit
9-8-0 0.886 3.29 $4,500,000

Potential trading partners: None mentioned besides the Sharks, which we already covered.

Pros: He has a normal body temperature, is already used to sitting on the bench, and can occasionally play lights-out hockey.

Cons: "occasionally" being the key word here. He has only been that close two or three times this season, and there's no guarantee which Hiller shows up. Perhaps a change of scenery will help, but that's a big risk to take on at $4.5M at trade deadline for a backup.

Potential price: A seventh rounder maybe, but no one is going to want to take on that cap hit even if it is an expiring contract. The Flames can eat salary, but there's better players to do that with.

David Jones

GP G A P CF% Rel Cap hit
57 9 6 15 -6.33% $4,000,000

Potential trading partners: Uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

Pros: He hasn't been seriously injured so far this season and he can occasionally look like a first liner.

Cons: He is doomed by fate to get injured at the wrong time and mostly looks like a fourth liner.

Potential price: I'm honestly surprised Jones' name came up in the first place. He's way too expensive to be a sweetener, but not good enough to be traded for individually. If someone trades for him, he might be worth a 6th or 7th pick with a B prospect. Nothing too special.

There are, of course, other players who could be traded. However, I believe that all activity involving the Flames will be regarding players on the list Dreger tweeted, and anyone else will require a fortune to get out of Calgary. WIth that, we only have four days to find out.