Latest Development In Mikael Backlund Trade Rumors

Entering the final year of his contract with a $5.35M cap hit, and uncertainty over whether he'll sign an extension, Mikael Backlund's name has been circulating on the trade market. 

The longest tenured Calgary Flame has been on the block as the Flames look to free up some cap space. But according to Pat Steinberg of Sportsnet, trade offers for Backlund "have been soft" to this point, despite the 34-year-old middle-six center coming off a career year. 

But that cap hit seems to be deflating his trade value, and it appears that the Flames will likely have to go into the season with their de facto team leader on an expiring deal and unrestricted free agency looming. 

 But according to Steinberg, that's just fine. 

It would be silly of Calgary to trade him just for the sake of it. 

Patience is a virtue in Backlund’s case... If he’s having another season similar to his last one, Backlund will be very sought after leading up to the trade deadline. 

And if they still don't get any offers at that point that they're interested in, Steinberg notes that they'll be able to cash in on the extra $5.35M in cap space at the end of the season, having received an admirable 15+ years of service from the veteran.  

Backlund had another strong two-way year in 2022-23 and posted a personal-best 56 points on 19 goals and 37 assists, along with a plus-24 rating. 

Photo: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports