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Joni Ortio Makes His Pitch

The young net minder is in love with Calgary, but are the Flames in love with him?

Candice Ward-USA TODAY Sports

Joni Ortio is actively making his pitch to stay in Calgary for the foreseeable future, but are the Flames going to make that happen? That is one of the million dollar questions this off-season that the Flames must answer before the 2016-17 season starts. While Ortio did play well at the end of the season after Karri Ramo's injury, this writer doesn't believe he's the long term answer as the starting goaltender right now.

Now, not believing he's the long term answer as a starter is one thing, but I would be 100% on board with him getting a new deal and being Calgary's backup. Ortio showed enough in the 22 games he played that he's an asset that could help the Flames in the future. His current deal has expired and there's no way the Flames are going to get him on the cheap (he was making $600k), but he shouldn't break the bank either.

Calgary needs 2 goaltenders, this we know. Will Ortio be one of the two, I don't see why not. If the Flames saw the same Ortio that I saw over the last month or so of the season, he should be back between the pipes. Keeping Ortio around and adding a true number one starter via FA or by trade would make the most sense. The Flames have prospects in Jon Gillies and Mason McDonald in the minors that are working their way to Calgary. Brian Burke and company can re-up Ortio and add a starter to fill the gap for the next few years until Gillies is ready. That plan should get the Flames back to the playoffs, while not sacrificing the future or costing them a ton of cash.

So, yes, I'm on board with Joni Ortio coming back, but I'm under no delusions that he's the true #1 starter the Flames have been looking for since Miikka Kiprusoff retired.