After wrapping up the pre-season last night with another victory over the Edmonton Oilers in a 1-0 snoozer and subsequently trimming the roster–sending John Armstrong, Jon Rheault, and Leland Irving to Abbotsford–today was a busy day for the Flames. Earlier in the day, defenceman Matt Pelech was waived by the club after struggling in training camp and failing to make much of an impression on management, especially compared to T.J. Brodie, who reportedly has a roster spot all but locked up, according to the Sun’s Eric Francis. Forward Cam Cunning joined Pelech on the waiver wire this afternoon, and both have a twenty-four hour window to be claimed before presumably being re-assigned to Abbotsford, while defenceman Staffan Kronwall, who has also been waived, has yet to join the Heat. Adam Pardy left last night’s game with an eye injury and is currently listed as day-to-day, however he should reportedly be ready to play in Thursday’s season opener, meaning the opportunity for Brodie to step in as the team’s seventh defenceman appears limited for now.
Up front, after losing both Matt Stajan and David Moss to injury in camp and the news that neither Daymond Langkow nor Ryan Stone will be ready to re-join the team any time soon, the Flames have also signed free-agent centre Brendan Morrison to a one-year, $725,000 deal; the thirty-five-year-old was released from his tryout with his former team, the Canucks. The addition of Morrison certainly gives the Flames more depth and security down the middle–particularly when it comes to the bottom six–with uncertainty still surrounding Mikael Backlund‘s position as a permanent fixture with the club, as well as that of Craig Conroy, who is on a two-way deal, Stefan Meyer who is still with the team, and Brett Sutter, who spent most of camp playing wing on the fourth line.
The Flames still have some re-arranging to do salary-cap wise–currently $2,574,595M over the ceiling with 23 players under contract (via Capgeek)–which will supposedly be resolved with Daymond Lagnkow going on long-term injury reserve in the next couple of days, as he has experienced setbacks in his progress in recovering from a neck injury– and the possibility of one of the team's other injured forwards in Stajan or Kotalik also providing some cap relief via an extended stay on the IR, according to Flames AGM Jay Feaster in an interview with the Fan 960 today. He also said that David Moss, who happens to have the lowest salary of the four Flames forwards currently in sick bay, is not a likely candidate for LTIR. While this makes sense in the short-term, it won't do much to alleviate the Flames' money troubles in the long run; The club currently has eight defenders on the roster including T.J. Brodie and will be hard-pressed for cash when healthy bodies begin returning to the lineup. Barely ducking under the cap by way of LTIR is simply delaying the inevitable–a move will have to be made.
More reaction to the Morrison signing and news from around the NHL as the league prepares for the new season, after the jump.
A recap of last night's narrow victory at the Saddledome [The Calgary Herald]
Vancouver fans react to the news that the long-time Canuck has joined the ranks of a bitter rival [Nucks Misconduct]
Kent shares his thoughts on the club's most recent addition and what it means for the team going forward [Houses of the Hockey]
A spotless pre-season record might not count towards climbing the Western Conference standings, but there's certainly something to be said for its effects on team morale heading into Thursday's opener [The Calgary Herald]
Fomer Flame Mike Cammalleri will miss Montreal’s season opener as a result of his excessive stick work on Isles forward Nino Niederreiter, in response to what teammate Tomas Plekanec called a “blindside hit” [The Globe & Mail]
The Edmonton Oilers make their final camp cuts [The Copper & Blue]
The always humorous and informative Ryan Lambert returns with 20 bold predictions for the 2010-11 season [Puck Daddy]
That's it for today everyone, t-minus two days until the season opener!
by Hayley Mutch