Toffoli, who has 182 goals and 370 points in 614 regular-season games and 16 goals and 39 points in 76 postseason games, is unlikely to be the last good player to arrive in Calgary before the trade deadline on March 21.
Tyler Toffoli Trade, Contract & Exchange Information
The Montreal Canadiens dealt Tyler Toffoli to the Calgary Flames in exchange for a top-10-protected first-round selection in 2022, unsigned prospect Emil Heineman, a 2023 fifth-rounder, and right-winger Tyler Pitlick, and it has the potential to be a terrific move for both sides.
Tyler Toffoli Trade
Let’s start with the Flames, who will benefit right away from the deal. In the midst of an excellent season that has them a point out of first place in the Pacific Division and already boasting one of the NHL’s deepest rosters, adding Toffoli’s scoring was a top priority.
The chemistry should develop quickly, with Darryl Sutter, the coach Toffoli credits most for his development, behind the bench; close friends and former Los Angeles Kings teammates Brad Richardson, Trevor Lewis, and Milan Lucic upfront; former junior roommate Sean Monahan at the center; and former Vancouver Canucks teammates Jacob Markstrom and Chris Tanev at the heart of Calgary’s success.
“Chemistry is crucial,” Flames general manager Brad Treliving told Calgary media shortly after the deal was revealed. It’s more vital to get good players.”
Toffoli is more than just a good player; he’s a Stanley Cup champion; a seasoned player who is flexible, defensively responsible, clever, and gifted, as Treliving, Sutter, Lucic, Markstrom, and Monahan all stated during their Monday media availability. He’s also a wonderful person who is generally respected by those who have had the pleasure of getting to know him in Los Angeles, Vancouver, and Montreal.
The Canadians were well aware of the situation. They weren’t in a hurry to let the 29-year-old out the door only months after he played such a key role in their first Cup Final appearance since 1993.
But this move, the first of several the Canadiens will make in the coming weeks and months, is about where they are as a team: bottom in the NHL standings and ready to start creating a brighter future.
This agreement has to start with them adding a first-round selection in the next draft. A fifth-round pick next year is also on the table.
Tyler Toffoli Contract
With Toffoli under contract for this year and two more years at $4.25 million, reclaiming some cash was a must from a financial standpoint, and Pitlick satisfies that criterion as a player with a $1.75 million cap impact on an expiring deal.
“Tyler’s a terrific man and a good player,” Treliving says of Pitlick, “but things didn’t work out here.” On the first shift of the preseason, he was hurt.”
That helps to explain why Pitlick wound up on the Flames’ periphery. The other issue is that he just did not play well enough.
In terms of Pitlick’s future in Montreal, the 30-year-old has a chance to prove he’s better than the player who has only two assists in 25 games this season; that he’s more like the player who has 47 goals and 37 assists in 286 NHL games with the Arizona Coyotes, Philadelphia Flyers, Dallas Stars, and Edmonton Oilers. It will be beneficial to him if it leads to a new NHL deal.
If Pitlick gets one from the Canadiens, who already have cousins Rem and Rhett on the team, it will be because he demonstrates he’s more than simply a throw-in element in this deal.
Heineman, who joined the Flames in the trade that sent Sam Bennett to the Florida Panthers last season, is the most fascinating part of the transaction from Montreal’s perspective.
Heineman is a six-foot-one left-winger who was picked 43rd overall by the Panthers in 2020. He has 31 points in 90 career games for Leksand in the Swedish Hockey League (18 goals, 13 assists).
An amateur scout we spoke with stated, “He’s got an edge about him and some great promise.” “He’s proved he’s got a pretty excellent shot and a scoring touch, even though he’s played a bit of a supporting role due to his age.”
When general manager Kent Hughes speaks to the media about his acquisition, we’ll learn more about how the Canadiens feel about him. Neither he nor Jeff Gorton, the Canadiens’ executive vice president of hockey operations, were available for comment on Monday.
However, we understand that this is about their future. With young players Alexander Romanov, Ryan Poehling, Nick Suzuki, Cole Caufield, and Jake Evans presently growing with the major club, Toffoli believes the future is already bright.
In an exclusive interview with Sportsnet on Monday afternoon, Toffoli remarked, “I just hope that I’m departing having left a positive impact on them.” “I’m buddies with them; Cole, Nick, and Jake are definitely close to me. With them, in particular, I developed a strong friendship. I really hope they keep expanding and striving to improve every day because it’s a great game to play and a wonderful city to be a part of.”
Tyler Toffoli Trade Conclusion
In the short term, this transaction damages the Canadiens, but nearly every trade they make at this point will do so. It’s at least comforting to know that management is willing to trade present NHL assets for futures, as the fan base has demanded, if not expected, them to do.
The question is whether the compensation for Toffoli is adequate, and opinions on this appear to be divided. Supporters of the Calgary Flames will tell you that they overpaid, while fans of the Montreal Canadiens have been lukewarm at best, with many thinking that the return was insufficient. While I believe the judgment is still out on this transaction, it appears to be an uninspiring return at the moment.
What the Canadiens obtain in return for their first-round draft selection, as well as whether Emil Heineman can reach or surpass his potential, will determine whether they win or lose this transaction. Given that neither of these is assured in the least, Toffoli’s comeback appears to be nothing more than a bag of magic beans.
Only time will tell if those miraculous beans will sprout into a stalk, allowing this squad to reclaim its competitiveness.