Back in June, the Calgary Flames made a splash at the National Hockey League Entry draft, dealing star defenseman Dougie Hamilton to the Carolina Hurricanes in a five-player trade. Along with Hamilton, the Flames shipped forward Micheal Ferland and blue line prospect Adam Fox to the Hurricanes in exchange for forward Elias Lindholm and defenceman Noah Hanifin. It is Hamilton's third team in the past five seasons... and the second time he was moved during the summer. Calgary acquired the Hamilton from Boston ahead of the 2015 draft.
Despite the Flames' struggles this past season, Hamilton is coming off of the best season of his young career. The young blue liner managed to put up 17 goals and 27 assists in 82 games with Calgary last season. Hamilton, who was originally drafted ninth overall by the Bruins in 2011, has 64 goals and 156 assists in 423 career games.
While heading to Carolina where the Hurricanes are struggling on the ice and with ticket sales might have discourage other young players, however, Hamilton revealed in an interview with many media members, including NHL.com, that he is excited about the new opportunity. He even had the guts to take a shot at his former team and his former teammates.
“When I went to Calgary, it was kind of the same thing, where on paper maybe we were the best [defence] corps in the league, and we actually didn’t turn out so good,” Hamilton told reporters on Tuesday. “So, hopefully in Carolina we can do a little better of getting chemistry with everybody and really being a force back there as a unit.”
It is true that the Flames missed the playoffs in two of Hamilton’s three years there and the one time they did clinch a spot in the postseason, they were swept by the Anaheim Ducks...
Still, Hamilton should be careful with his statement...
Many believe that playing with Flames captain and veteran Mark Giordano clearly helped bolster Hamilton’s numbers in the past seasons, and the young defender won't get his support anymore. Especially if Hamilton keeps taking shots at his former team...
“As players, we just want to get back to winning and having the fans come and having a good atmosphere and everything,” Hamilton added. “I’m looking forward to that.”
Let's see if Hamilton will be able to do that with the defensive crew in Raleigh.
Photo Credit: Zuma Press