The Calgary Flames made some really positive moves early in the NHL free agency period. The organization saw Mike Cammalleri leave for New Jersey signing a four year deal with the Devils but countered that move by completing three huge signings on Tuesday.
The organization has reached an agreement with goalie Jonas Hiller and forward Mason Raymond. Hiller signed a two year deal worth $9 million, while Mason Raymond signed a three year deal worth $9.5 million. They also tightened up their defensive by securing Deryk Engelland to a new three year contract that will cost the organization $2.9 million per year.
These are all key signings for the Flames. This team has been in rebuild mode for quite some time now and they haven’t made the playoffs in what seems like an eternity. These three signings will definitely help strengthen the team’s foundation.
Jonas Hiller’s skill will improve tremendously as the team’s new number one goalie. He’s got a quick glove hand and is used to taking a lot of shots. He plays well under pressure and uses his height to his advantage.
The Flames were struggling to find a new starting goalie last season. They alternated between rookies, much like Anaheim did with Andersen and Gibson. Well now that Hiller has arrived, there is no doubt who the starting goalie will be come week one of the new season.
Mason Raymond will provide this team with plenty more speed, and goals. Raymond is coming out of a fairly decent season with the Toronto Maple Leafs. The 28 year old accumulated a total of 46 points on the year. Frankly I don’t know why the Leafs didn’t try harder to keep this guy. Regardless, Raymond will certainly add more offensive depth to this Flames squad.
Deryk Engelland is not a goal scorer by any means. He managed to accumulate 12 points last year. But his physical play and intensity will certainly help the Calgary Flames win games. This guy is not afraid to block shots or use his fists and size to frustrate opponents. He’s a stay at home type of defencemen with plenty of experience.
Losing Cammalleri was a huge blow to this organization. But I’m confident these signings will help lessen that blow quite substantially. The Calgary Flames still have a lot of work to do before they can be a playoff contender again. But the team is on the right track and are by no means finished shaking things up. I can’t wait to see how far Jonas Hiller will carry his new team.
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