BUFFALO, NY — Yesterday it seemed unlikely that the Red Wings could move goaltender Jimmy Howard to another team due to the market with Marc-Andre Fleury and Ben Bishop in trade talks. Today, a glimmer of hope has shone upon Detroit. John Shannon of Sportsnet reports that Ben Bishop is making big demands if he is to be traded to the Flames, which opens up the possibility for Howard to be moved in a trade:
Add name of Jimmy Howard to Flames' goalie chase.Hearing Bishop wants long term extension if traded to Calgary.Hearing 7x7 asking price.— John Shannon (@JSportsnet) June 24, 2016
Is it Bishop or Elliott heading to Calgary? Told the Flames expect to leave Buffalo with a starting goalie.— John Shannon (@JSportsnet) June 24, 2016
Bishops contract demands are massive, and would end up costing the Flames big-time in the end, whereas Howard could be acquired at a much cheaper price, and come with palatable contract terms for Calgary. At this point, the Red Wings are so desperate for cap space with the looming concern that Pavel Datsyuk’s contract might not get moved, I’d have to think the Wings would be comfortable asking for one of Calgary’s three second-round picks. It’s unclear as to whether the Flames would ask for the Red Wings to send anything along with Howard, but my gut tells me that a second-round pick for Howard would be a value-for-value trade. No money retained, no conditions. Detroit gets a contract off the books, and Calgary gets their starting goaltender that they have been after for so long.
Bishop has one year left on his contract at $5.95 million, while Howard has three at $5.29 million. If Bishop is actually asking for a seven-by-seven deal, it could be in Calgary’s best interest to go with Jimmy Howard or Marc-Andre Fleury. Whichever way they go, Brian Burke has made it abundantly clear that they don’t want to leave the 2016 NHL Draft without a starting goaltender. It remains to be their “number one priority.”