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Flames send draft pick to Blackhawks for centre Ryan Carpenter

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The Calgary Flames did their shopping early this year.

The Flames made their big moves well ahead of Monday’s NHL trade deadline, adding sniper Tyler Toffoli from the Montreal Canadiens last month and picking up Calle Jarnkrok from the Seattle Kraken last week.

READ MORE: Calgary Flames send draft picks to Seattle Kraken for Calle Jarnkrok

“We didn’t have to go and be real active here just to say we were active on trade deadline day. We did a lot of the work here in the last couple of weeks,” Calgary general manager Brad Treliving told reporters after the deadline passed.

Treliving and his staff did add some depth to the Flames’ lineup on Monday, though, acquiring Ryan Carpenter from the Chicago Blackhawks for a fifth-round pick in the 2024 NHL entry draft.

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The 31-year-old centre from Oviedo, Fla., has three goals and eight assists in 59 games for the Blackhawks this season.

Carpenter’s NHL career began in March 2014 when he signed with the San Jose Sharks as a free agent and he went on to play for the Vegas Golden Knights before inking a three-year, US$3-million deal with Chicago in 2019.

Over 300 regular-season games, the six-foot, 200-pound forward has tallied 26 goals, 42 assists and 106 penalty minutes.

“Ryan’s a guy we liked a lot,” Treliving said. “He fits the style we play, he’s a north-south player, an excellent penalty killer, he plays hard, he’s got some sandpaper to his game and I think he’ll fit in well with us.”

Chicago Blackhawks’ Ryan Carpenter reacts after scoring a goal during the second period of an NHL hockey game against the Tampa Bay Lightning in Chicago, Thursday, March 4, 2021. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

The Flames also sent goalie Michael McNiven to the Ottawa Senators for future considerations ahead of the deadline.

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READ MORE: Goaltenders shine in Buffalo Sabres’ 1-0 win against Calgary Flames

The club has already seen a return on its biggest deal of the season, a trade back on Feb. 15 that brought Toffoli to Calgary in exchange for forward Tyler Pitlick, prospect Emil Heineman, a first-round selection in this year’s draft and a fifth-rounder in 2023.

Toffoli has already amassed eight goals and seven assists in 17 games for Calgary.

READ MORE: Toffoli makes a crowd pleasing debut as Flames beat Blue Jackets 6-2

The 29-year-old right-winger came with terms too. He is currently in the second year of a four-year contract with an average annual value of US$4.25 million.

Last week, the Flames brought in Jarnkrok in a deal that sent Seattle three draft picks (a second-round selection in 2022, a third-round selection in 2023 and a seventh-round selection in 2024).

The Kraken are retaining half of the 30-year-old Swedish centre’s $2-million cap hit this season.

The moves come as the team prepares for a playoff push. The Flames sit atop the Pacific Division with a 38-16-8 record and 20 games left in the regular season.

New roster additions have given head coach Darryl Sutter more to work with, Treliving said.

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“It gives some flexibility for Darryl and the staff. There’s lot of options, there’s lots of different people that can play different positions,” he said.

Further depth can be found on Calgary’s farm team, the Stockton Heat of the American Hockey League, the GM added.

Overall, the Flames’ front office likes the way the team is constructed, Treliving said, with a steady, businesslike approach to playing hockey.

“We’ve added to our team significantly over the last month and we’re happy with how the (trade deadline) went,” he said.

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