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Report: Devils Trade for Jacob Markstrom Still Possible Amid Frustration With Flames

Despite Jacob Markstrom’s frustration about being the center of trade speculation, it could ultimately land the Swedish goaltender in New Jersey.



New Jersey Devils

The noise with Jacob Markstrom and the New Jersey Devils just won’t go away. It’s not quite the same as how it went last trade deadline when the Devils acquired Timo Meier, however, where there was a lot of noise, there certainly was fire. Despite Markstrom’s displeasure about the noise, a trade to the Devils is still possible.

On Friday, the Calgary Flames honored former Flames goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff as they retired his No.34. Following the game, Markstrom was asked by reporters in Calgary how he felt about all the trade speculation leading up to the March 8th NHL Trade Deadline.

He, in fact, took a shot at the Flames’ management.

“Everyone in here, I really respect everything that has been going on, and not going on, and how everyone in this room has handled everything,” Markstrom began. “And then the whole situation and everything, am I happy about that? No, I’m not. I think it could have been handled a lot different from up top.”

It’s been well-reported that the Swedish goaltender isn’t a fan of being the centerfold of trade speculation. As a result, he was pointed in his response to the question regarding his name being a hot topic.

Now, because of Markstrom’s frustration, the 34-year-old remains one of the top trade targets, according to TSN’s Chris Johnston.

“Well, on Friday, he’s ninth on the (TSN) trade bait list,” Johnston started. “He might be up to first or second by the end of the weekend based on the tone and tenor of the comments he made to reporters. And I think that the context is super important here, right? Jacob Markstrom is not a player that’s outspoken by nature. He certainly doesn’t appreciate — I don’t think — all the speculation that’s accompanied what’s been a fine season for him in terms of whether he’d be traded or not. We do know the Flames have had discussions with other teams about a potential Markstrom trade.”

Johnston goes on to state that part of Markstrom’s frustration is because he signed with the Flames as a free agent and had aspirations to compete for Stanley Cups. Now, he’s watched a number of his teammates such as Tyler Toffoli, Elias Lindholm, Chris Tanev, Nikita Zadorov, and likely soon, Noah Hanifin, move around the NHL to other teams.

Despite the two years remaining on his contract, Markstrom’s time could be coming to an end in Calgary just like the rest.

At the forefront of trade speculations for Markstrom is the Devils. New Jersey remains desperate for goaltending now and for the long haul.

“Perhaps the conversation now shifts if they get a sense that maybe he’s not on board for sticking around here,” Johnston concluded. “He’s still got two years on his contract. This isn’t something that has to happen by the March 8th trade deadline, but there’s lots of window to explore those discussions with the Devils in particular and I do think New Jersey is still interested in a potential Markstrom deal.”

Pierre LeBrun stated a few days ago that the Devils remain in on the Markstrom sweepstakes. In fact, he even added that the Devils might be willing to do the deal without Calgary retaining any salary.

With six days remaining before the 2024 NHL Trade Deadline, and whether the Devils remain in the playoff race or not, general manager Tom Fitzgerald‘s sights seemingly remain on Markstrom. Perhaps Flames GM Craig Conroy will remember that the Devils facilitated the trade that sent Chris Tanev to the Dallas Stars.

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