Sam Bennett has consistently been in trade rumors in the past few years, routinely mentioned as someone who might benefit from a fresh start.
With the Flames taking on the Canadiens Tuesday evening, Darren Dreger was asked about that very notion during his Tuesday morning radio hit on Montreal’s TSN 690.
“We’ve talked about Sam Bennett potentially being a player in play the last couple of seasons now,” reflected Dreger. “And every time his name is brought up, the general manager of the Flames, Brad Treliving, is quick to shoot it down and just rolls his eyes.
“I understand why he’s hesitant or reluctant because you can see the tools that Sam Bennett provides, it’s just his layer of inconsistency that is difficult for the coaches to have to deal with on an annual basis.
“So I think just looking at the age of the player, time spent in the National Hockey League, I would think that he’s got to be a little bit vulnerable finally; but in saying that, I don’t know why Treliving would just give up on him at this stage.
“I would think though that when he brought in Bill Peters to coach the Calgary Flames, I would expect that Treliving’s view of Sam Bennett would be, ‘Look, I feel like there’s a real good player that is just beneath the surface, so it’s part of your job to try and figure that out, develop a relationship, and let’s see if we can’t squeeze the best of this kid and finally get him to turn that corner.’
“We’ve seen flashes of it this year. I haven’t asked Brad specifically whether or not he’d consider moving him at this point - it’s still so, so early - but from an outside perspective, from those that I talk to who ask about Sam Bennett, they generally like his play.
“So if he’s playing better than he has in past years, then obviously he’s going to extend his time in Calgary unless somebody blows their doors off with an offer they can’t refuse.”
Bennett has picked up points in three of his last five games, and is in the second season of his two-year, $3.9 million contract.
The 22-year-old forward will have arbitration rights this summer.
Elliotte Friedman shared a few interesting Bennett-related tidbits earlier in October, including Treliving’s long-term vision of the player, and also how far down the road any Bennett trade talk may have gone in the past.
Contract-related info via CapFriendly