Flames Rumors: Insider Links Elias Lindholm Trade to Surprising Rival

The Calgary Flames remain a team to watch as we creep closer to the March 8 trade deadline. They have several pending unrestricted free agents who are going to draw interest from other teams and this includes top trade target, centre Elias Lindholm. Even with the Flames hanging around the playoff picture in the west, GM Craig Conroy is going to want to consider pulling the trigger on moving Lindholm, just for the significant return that's going to come in the deal.

Lindholm has been linked to the Boston Bruins, Colorado Avalanche, Winnipeg Jets and Vegas Golden Knights and on Saturday night, hockey insider Elliotte Friedman linked Lindholm to the Vancouver Canucks.

Friedman sees the Canucks in the mix in trade talks and they do have a number of top prospects who are getting close to NHL ready which Conroy will be very interested in. Lindholm's in the final season of his deal, making $4.85 million and he does not have any trade protection.

So far in 49 games, the Swedish veteran forward has potted nine goals and added 23 assists. He's great in the faceoff dot, can play in all situations and is very sound defensively. He's also played the wing throughout his career so the versatility is something onlooking teams will be drooling over. 

The Canucks hold their first-round pick at this upcoming draft in June, however don't have a second-rounder. Conroy should be sticking to his guns and ensuring at least a first and a top prospect head back to Calgary in any deal.

Photo credit:  Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports