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One of the bigger surprises of the trade deadline was that Cammalleri was not, in fact, traded by the Calgary Flames. It had seemed like an automatic, given the team’s lowly position in the standings and the veteran player’s contract status.
“It didn’t happen not for a lack of effort, not for a lack of moving the price,” said the acting general manager at the time, Brian Burke. “I’m comfortable we did everything we could do to move him short of giving him away. To me, the value of having him here for the rest of the season and the enhanced ability to maybe sign him to an extension was way preferable to giving him away for nothing.”
Cammalleri led the Flames with 26 goals in 2013-14. The 32-year-old winger has not played in the postseason since 2011 and has not won a Stanley Cup, so while he’s met with new GM Brad Treliving and the Flames do want to keep him, he may ultimately be loathe to re-sign with the rebuilding club.
Even Burke conceded after the deadline, “I’m sure Mike’s disappointed – not to be a Calgary Flame because he loves it here, but to go somewhere and get in some playoff hockey.”
Cammalleri is coming off a five-year, $30 million contract. His best season as an NHLer came in 2008-09, when he scored 39 goals for the Flames. He was also a big contributor during the Canadiens’ surprise playoff run in 2010, when he scored 13 times in 19 games.