The Calgary Flames have signed depth defenseman Nicolas Meloche to a one-year contract with a $950K AAV. They signed depth forward Kevin Rooney earlier in the day.
Meloche is a 24-year-old right-shot defenseman from LaSalle, Quebec, standing at 6’3″ and weighing in at 212 lbs. He was undrafted in the second round of the 2015 NHL Draft by the Colorado Avalanche, but most recently played in the San Jose Sharks organization.
In five professional seasons, Meloche has primarily played in the AHL, but played 50 games for the Sharks last season.
|2017-18||San Antonio Rampage||AHL||58||5||12||17||59||-16|
|2019-20||San Jose Barracuda||AHL||41||0||7||7||34||1|
|2020-21||San Jose Sharks||NHL||7||0||1||1||0||1|
|San Jose Barracuda||AHL||29||0||9||9||28||8|
|2021-22||San Jose Sharks||NHL||50||2||5||7||39||-17|
|San Jose Barracuda||AHL||10||1||0||1||14||-9|
Meloche is a depth piece that will likely slot in on the third pairing at the very best. It’s very possible that he spends time as the seventh defender or in the AHL. However, as a relatively young defenseman coming off his first full NHL season, there could be something there with Meloche. Overall, he was essentially league average last season, according to 5v5 isolated impacts via HockeyViz.com.
However, the Sharks saw a huge reduction in chances while shorthanded when Meloche was on the ice.
If Erik Gudbranson does not return to Calgary, Meloche could serve as a cheaper and younger replacement on the back end and specifically on the penalty kill.