TSN’s Pierre LeBrun, who recently discussed Noah Hanifin’s imminent contract extension on an episode of Insider Trading, revealed on TSN Radio that the anticipated deal did not materialize. Close to signing what was rumored to be a $60 million extension, negotiations were suddenly halted and a deal with the defenseman was never signed. This unexpected development has now opened the door to the intriguing possibility of a sign-and-trade scenario for Hanifin, who is just one of a handful of players the Flames might be sending off the roster in the next few weeks.
LeBrun shared insights on teams considering trade offers for players they intend to extend, using Hanifin as a prime example. Any team that spends they assets it will take to acquire him will want to know he’s sticking around. Understanding his positions as the youngest among four pending UFAs, Hanifin’s camp reportedly expects to engage with interested teams to explore potential sign-and-trade arrangements.
It’s not entirely clear who decided to pump the brakes. Some have reported that the Flames’ struggles this season gave Hanifin pause. Others have noted that because the Flames are not playing well, ownership said it was time to stop investing big money into players that aren’t helping them win. While this might not have been specifically a shot at Hanifin, it means that any long-term extension talks with any of the Flames pending UFAs has been squashed.
LeBrun suggests that this pause might have been a wise decision, hinting at a potential regression for the Flames and speculating that Hanifin could have had second thoughts about signing with them.
Why a Sign-and-Trade for Hanifin?
LeBrun further explained the strategic advantage for Calgary in a sign-and-trade scenario. The Flames would benefit from trading a player with a secured contract, as opposed to a rental player, maximizing the return in the trade. The catch here is what the extension looks like.
Sign the player for too much and he might be harder to move. Sign him for too short a term and he might not fetch as strong a return.
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