I'm not sure if you've heard, but, Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan are due to receive major pay upgrades this summer. You also may have heard that Calgary needs a few goalies. They also start paying Mark Giordano a little bit more next season and Joe Colborne is up as well. Yeesh. That's a little bit of work the Flames have to do this off season. Oh yeah, and Josh Jooris needs a new deal too!
The Flames Center is finishing up a contract that paid him $975,000 last season (2013-15 were entry level years, with last season a standard contract). Jooris is one of a handful of Flames that are looking to get paid and Calgary has some really tough questions to answer as they open up the checkbook. Here's what Josh Jooris has done over the life of his previous contract:
As we can see from the numbers, Jooris is going in the wrong direction for a guy in a contract year. His games played only dropped by 1, but his point production was a huge drop off this season. There are contributing factors as guys like Michael Frolik and Sam Bennett weren't around in 2014-15, but that's a steep decline for a guy who came up with much fanfare and hope. Jooris had 3 separate stints where he went 8+ games without a point (2 of those were 9 game skids). He played in 59 games this season, 47 of them he didn't have a point. Ouch. He did tally 5 points in the last month of the season, but all of those points were assists. The last goal of this campaign came on February 19th in a win over Vancouver.
While other young Flames have had some serious lulls in production (Sam Bennett and Micheal Ferland), Jooris isn't a Sam Bennett type player. The Flames can afford to deal with Bennett's production ups and downs because he was drafted so high, has shown star potential and is supposed to be part of the long term plans in Calgary. Josh Jooris isn't that same type of player. Not to be forgotten in this is how "deep" the Flames are at Center. Sean Monahan. Sam Bennett. Mikael Backlund. Matt Stajan. All of them roam the face off dot and aren't going anywhere anytime soon (Stajan and Backlund have cap hits of over $3 million).
Is Josh Jooris a Flame next season? That's a tough question and one the decision makers will have to make. Personally, I don't think Josh Jooris in a necessary piece, but I also don't think he's an easy throw away. I don't really see him worth Mikael Backlund money, but the Flames did give Brandon Bollig $1.25 million and Jooris is worth more to the Flames than Bollig, so anything is possible.