Brad Treliving’s busy and impressive week has continued. Today, the club announced that they would be buying out the remaining year of Lance Bouma and Ryan Murphy’s contracts.
Lance Bouma had a remaining salary for the 2017-18 season of $2.3 M. With the buyout, the Flames will save $1,533,333 in salary cap space for the upcoming season, but will have $766,667 on their books for the 2018-19 season as a penalty for buying out Bouma.
It is hard to say that Bouma will be missed at all. He gave it his all, but truth be told, he was not really good at anything. He was one of the club’s worst penalty-killers despite constantly being deployed as one and he provided almost zero offence, with just 7 goals in 105 games over the past 2 seasons. He also has an abysmal career 43.9% CF.
Why did Bouma have such a contract in the first place? Mikael Backlund. In the 2014-15 season, Bouma spent plenty of time with Backlund, which resulted in him posting a career high 16 goals and 18 assists, with a 15.4% shooting percentage. The best he ever shot in his career other than that season, was 6.1%. The “Backlund Bump” led to Bouma being overvalued, getting a contract he would never live up to, and now he is being bought out.
To be fair, since then, Treliving has learned his lesson and avoided heading down the same road with both Joe Colborne and Alex Chiasson.
Ryan Murphy was not even a Flame for 24 hours. He was a throw in on the Eddie Lack acquisition of last night, to make the dollars work for the Hurricanes. While it seemed liked the former first round pick might be given a shot on the bottom pair in Calgary, apparently the Flames are not interested, so his attempt to revitalize his career will have to happen somewhere else.
Murphy is under 26, so they team only needs to pay 1⁄3 of the remainder of his 2017-18 salary of $825,000. The Flames will incur just a $100,000 cap hit for this season and then a $137,500 cap hit for next season.
Not too bad a deal for getting the Hurricanes to retain a lot of Eddie Lack’s salary.
What Does This Mean?
It means the Flames have their eye on a player or two that will be heading to free agency tomorrow. The Flames could have kept Bouma and Murphy and still had space to re-sign RFAs Sam Bennett, Micheal Ferland and Curtis Lazar. But the team just freed up an extra couple million in cap space, so it looks like they plan on using it.
Patrick Marleau has been linked to the Flames, Justin Williams could be a nice add, as would Brian Campbell. Jussi Jokinen was bought out today by the Panthers and would be an excellent addition to the Flames, while former Flame Mike Cammaleri still has something in the tank and could be a fit for a return for his third visit in Calgary.
We will just have to see what happens in the next couple of days.
All salary information courtesy of CapFriendly.