Insider Reveals Reason Behind Noah Hanifin's Trade Request

Going into his walk season, pending unrestricted free agent Noah Hanifin made it clear earlier this summer that he doesn't intend to sign an extension with the Calgary Flames, and would prefer a trade to a U.S. team. 

Eric Francis of Sportsnet reported Wednesday morning that one former teammate in particular has opened up Hanifin's eyes to what he could have in the future. 

I keep citing the fact that (former Flames teammates) Hanifin and Matthew Tkachuk are really good buddies. They have that Boston connection with their families (Tkachuk's father Keith is from there and Hanifin was born there). 

I think he looks at the lifestyle that Matthew Tkachuk is living (in Miami with the Florida Panthers), and he says, 'that's for me. That's a little bit better than the setup here in Calgary.'

Losing their top defender in Hanifin will be tough for the Flames, and there's no telling whether that comes sooner rather than later (i.e. the trade deadline, depending on where Calgary is at in the standings), but, as Francis notes, "that's unfortunate, but at some point, the Flames will get some pretty good assets for him." 

Hanifin played 22 minutes a night last season, putting up 38 points in 81 games. The season before, he posted 48 points and a plus-27. But it appears he'll be taking his talents south of the border. 

"I don't believe anything is going to change," says Francis. "He sees the pasture as being greener down in the States."

Photo: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports