A pending UFA on what figures to be a bad team, Mike Cammalleri knows he could be traded out of Calgary at some point this season.
He’s just not going to spend the season talking about it.
“What good does it do for me to speculate on (a potential trade?),” Cammalleri told the Calgary Sun. “I talked to my agent, and he suggested maybe it’s best to just wrap it up and say, ‘I said all I have to say, and there’s nothing to talk about.’
“Maybe this will be my last interview about it.”
Cammalleri, 31, led the Flames in scoring last year and is one of the club’s alternate captains. He’s already projecting to be a sought-after commodity at the trade deadline, especially since his five-year, $30 million deal expires at season’s end.
He’s confident he won’t be held back by his hand injury — even though reports earlier this week suggested it was severe — and said while he appreciates and understands the process of trade speculation, he’s just not willing to take part in it.
“I understand that it’s the media’s job to think about it and talk about it, and as a fan, I think about it and consume information on other people who are going through that journey, because it’s fun,” he explained. “It’s the soap opera to sports — and that’s great.
“So go ahead, speculate away, and pick scenarios. But at the end of the day, things change so quickly in this game so you can just play hockey the best you can and be the best teammate you can.”
There’s another Raffl in the NHL.
On Tuesday, the Jets announced that Thomas Raffl — the older brother of Flyers forward Michael Raffl — has signed a one-year, one-way deal worth $575,000.
Raffl, 29, was in Winnipeg’s camp on a PTO after a lengthy career in Europe. He spent time playing in Sweden and his native Austria, most recently with powerhouse EC Red Bull Salzburg — last year, Raffl scored 53 points in 52 games for Salzburg and three in seven games for Austria while serving as team captain at the World Hockey Championships.
“We would like to recognize and express our appreciation to the EC Red Bull Salzburg organization for allowing Thomas and the Winnipeg Jets this opportunity,” Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff said in a statement.
With the Jets, Raffl projects to play in the bottom-six forward group, where he can utilize his 6-foot-4, 215-pound frame in a checking-slash-energy role.
For now, though, he’ll start out with the club’s AHL affiliate in Manitoba.
Seven defensemen will comprise the Philadelphia Flyers’ opening-day roster, which the club finalized today.
Those seven are Radko Gudas, Michael Del Zotto, Luke Schenn, Nick Schultz, Brandon Manning, Mark Streit, and Evgeny Medvedev.
Not on the list? Andrew MacDonald, who has cleared waivers and been assigned to AHL Lehigh Valley. (That move allowed the Flyers to keep both Manning and youngster Scott Laughton.)
Also not on the list were prospects Shayne Gostisbehere, Robert Hagg, Sam Morin, Ivan Provorov and Travis Sanheim. The first three will start the season in the AHL. The last two have been sent back to junior.
But the opening-day roster is not where this story ends. How the Flyers’ defensive mix changes as the season progresses will be worth watching.
They’d no doubt love to move Schenn, a pending unrestricted free agent with a $3.6 million cap hit. He could also end up in the AHL, a la MacDonald.
Medvedev, the 33-year-old who came over from the KHL and put up five points in five preseason games, is another pending UFA. The club could either look to re-sign or flip him.
Might 37-year-old Streit be a chip worth cashing in at the deadline, especially if the Flyers aren’t in a playoff position on Feb. 29? He’s only got two years left on his contract.
Meanwhile, GM Ron Hextall will be watching pending restricted free agents Manning and Gudas closely. Are they part of the future?
So, lots of decisions to make in Philly as the blue line continues its much-needed transition.