According to multiple online reports, the Calgary Flames are expected to sign restricted free agent forward Elias Lindholm to a six year contract worth an estimated $5 million per season.
The Calgary Flames appear to be closing in on an extension with RFA, Elias Lindholm. Details being worked on but expectation is 5 or 6 years at around $5M per.
The 23 year old Lindholm was acquired by the Flames from the Carolina Hurricanes, along with defenseman Noah Hanifin, in exchange for former Flames blue liner Dougie Hamilton, forward Micheal Ferland and prospect Adam Fox. The trade, made during the 2018 NHL Entry Draft, surprised many hockey fans, despite their being plenty of talk about Lindholm, Hanifin and Hamilton being on the trade market.
“Elias and Noah, they’re going to fit right in,” Calgary general manager Brad Treliving said at the time. “They’re good teammates. Part of when we look at this is making sure we have a good chemistry and a good mix in our dressing room.”
Those comments were interpreted by some Flames fans as a backhanded slap to the departed Hamilton, a player who doesn’t exactly have the best reputation amongst his teammates, fair or not.
Regardless, it seems the Flames are happy to hitch their wagon to Lindholm and it’s clear to see why. The former 5th overall draft choice from the 2013 NHL Entry Draft has 64 goals and 188 points in 374 career NHL games, but has managed 45 and 44 points the past two seasons under. The two way forward is expected to receive top line minutes with Flames star forwards Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan in 2018-19, but it’s worth mentioning that Lindholm had a difficult time earning top line minutes under head coach Bill Peters in Carolina. Fresh start, right? Well… except for the fact that Peters is now the head coach in Calgary. Hopefully though, for both Peters and Lindholm, the fresh start for both will provide them with a boost. There’s no denying Lindholm’s skill and his defensive prowess, he just has to put it all together on a more consistent basis moving forward. With a six year, $30 million agreement in his back pocket, Lindholm should rest a little easier and that relief in pressure could lead to more consistent offensive production. At least, that’s the hope if you’re a Flames fan.
Good gamble? Time will tell.