With the massive news breaking yesterday that general manager Brad Treliving will not be back with the Calgary Flames, new President of Hockey Operations and interim general manager for the Calgary Flames Don Maloney as well as CSEC President and CEO John Bean met the media to address the big news as well as the future of the organization. Here’s everything you need to know from the press conference.
Brad Treliving leaving the organization was his choice
Confirming what had already been reported by members of the media, Maloney and Bean let everyone know that Brad Treliving was in fact offered a new contact last offseason and the organization wanted him back. Maloney stated that Treliving “left us for his reasons.”
When pressed on what Treliving’s reasons were for leaving, they declined to answer but did mention that Treliving needs a mental break for a bit and won’t be immediately jumping to a new job. With rumours of a power struggle between Treliving and Sutter swirling, Maloney and Bean certainly didn’t do much to squash those rumours.
Even though Maloney and Bean wouldn’t divulge why Treliving decided to step away from the organization, Elliotte Friedman all but confirmed what most of us had already suspected. Soon after the press conference finished, Elliotte Friedman released his 32 thoughts and had some further updates on Treliving’s reasons for leaving.
“It is believed a deteriorating relationship with Sutter played a major role in the GM’s decision, that the two could not continue working together and really hadn’t communicated well in some time. If Sutter didn’t have an extension, maybe the outcome is different.”Elliotte Friedman on Brad Treliving’s exit from the Calgary Flames
Yikes. Based on Elliotte’s report, it sounds like Treliving was done with Sutter and it’s likely he pushed for him to be removed so a new coach could be brought in. When ownership refused, that was the final straw for Treliving.
Flames have no timeline to hire a new general manager
Anyone hoping for a quick turnaround to hire a new general manager probably shouldn’t get their hopes up. Maloney mentioned that the process of hiring a new general manager is just starting and in particular he stated there is no timeline right now and the organization doesn’t have a list of names. That said with the NHL draft and free agency only a couple months away, you’d think the organization would want a new general manager in place before then.
Calgary will be looking for a general manager with a fresh, new outlook
One of the more interesting moments of the presser was Maloney mentioning that the organization is looking for a “young, progressive, and inventive” person to take over as general manager. Considering the history of this franchise, that’s certainly a refreshing comment from Maloney. He also mentioned that current assistant general manager Craig Conroy is certainly a top candidate for the job.
A rebuild was considered last offseason, but isn’t an option now
Rebuilds and Calgary Flames ownership just don’t get along. When asked about the potential for a retool or rebuild, Bean went as far as to say he’s not allowed to mention the word rebuild. Instead he pushed back that the Flames have a great lineup from top to bottom that simply underperformed. In particular he mentioned Jacob Markstorm and MacKenzie Weegar as two players to build around.
One interesting thing he did mention is that the organization did consider rebuilding last offseason after Johnny Gaudreau decided to leave. In particular he said they had an offer on the table for Matthew Tkachuk that would kickstart a rebuild, but they went a different direction and made the deal with the Panthers instead.
No decisions have been made on the future of head coach Darryl Sutter
I’m sure the most pressing issue that Flames fans wanted an answer on was the future of Darryl Sutter. It sounds like we may get that answer sooner than later. When asked if Darryl Sutter would be behind the bench next offseason, Maloney stated that he is currently in the process of reviewing the organization from top to bottom, including coaching. He said the plan is to meet with Sutter either Tuesday or Wednesday to discuss the future.
What’s next for the Flames?
Based on the brief press conference and what we can gather from Maloney’s answers, it sounds like his current task is to do a full review of the organization from top to bottom on why the Flames underperformed and missed the playoffs this season. From there he’ll make decisions on coaches, players, and scouts. We’re only a few days into the offseason but this already looks like another wild summer in Calgary.