In the world’s worst kept secret, the Seattle Kraken selected Flames Captain Mark Giordano in the 2021 NHL Expansion Draft. Giordano was one of 19 players that Calgary left unprotected for Seattle to peruse through. In all honesty, Gio was really the only Flames player left unprotected that would make sense for Seattle and they did not hesitate to take the veteran defenceman.
Not only do the Kraken get an on ice veteran, they also get a veteran leader in Giordano. Since Jarome Iginla was traded in 2013, Giordano has worn the “C” for seven consecutive seasons, the second longest tenure behind Iginla. It would make total sense that if he isn’t traded by the Kraken after the Expansion Draft that he would become the first Captain in Seattle history.
The writing was on the wall for the Flames and Giordano after last season. It was the second straight year where Giordano’s numbers steeply declined after winning his first and only Norris Trophy in 2018-19. In his final two seasons he scored a total of 14 goals and handed out 43 assists, a far cry from his 17 goal, 57 assist campaign of 2018-19. Combine all that with the fact he was due $6.75 million in the final year of his contract, it made sense for Calgary to free themselves of that salary and free up space to add new depth as the 2021-22 season approaches.
In his time with the Flames Giordano played in 949 games, scored 143 goals, collected 366 assists and is the Flames all time leader in Expected +/- at 50.7. He ranks in the top 10 in games played (2nd), assists (5th), points (8th), short handed goals (9th) and shots (4th). He was also listed as the greatest player to ever wear the #5 in Flames history by Matchsticks & Gasoline.