Carolina Hurricanes: Thoughts on the Noah Hanifin Trade

RALEIGH, NC - MARCH 4: Noah Hanifin
RALEIGH, NC - MARCH 4: Noah Hanifin /

On June 23, the Carolina Hurricanes traded Noah Hanifin and Elias Lindholm to the Calgary Flames. I’ll share a few of my thoughts on those moves.

I may be really late with this article, but I wanted to write it anyway. 8 days ago, the Carolina Hurricanes shocked me by making a blockbuster trade. Since the beginning of the season, I have expected a blockbuster trade of a similar caliber, where the Hurricanes trade a good defenseman for more depth. I did not, however, expect to see Noah Hanifin get dealt away.

Hanifin was, in my opinion, the best defenseman on the Canes. Some might say otherwise, but every advanced stat suggests this. He is a very talented two-way player who has the ability to succeed at any assigned task. I thought that Hanifin would be with the Canes for a very long time.

Now we return to June 23, where Noah Hanifin and Elias Lindholm are traded to the Calgary Flames in exchange for Dougie Hamilton, Michael Ferland and Adam Fox. This trade is the biggest statement the Hurricanes have made in years.

Dougie Hamilton

By acquiring a defenseman as good as Dougie Hamilton, we can see the Hurricanes want to go on a playoff run.  He’s 6’6″ and a two-way player. He probably is better than Hanifin. He might be just what the Canes need.

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Last year, he was on probably the most disappointing team in the league, yet he still put up 44 points. Hamilton is a great player to acquire, and he adds to the Hurricanes’ already impressive defensive depth. Well, this is the optimistic side of the argument.

Hamilton is almost 4 years older than Hanifin. If Hanifin reaches Hamilton’s level in under that time, then the Flames will have gotten the better deal. Don’t forget about Elias Lindholm either. Lindholm scored 44 points this year, for much of which, he was on the fourth line.

A lot of people are making it out as if the Flames made the worst decision in their history, but I just don’t seem that. Hanifin is a lot closer to Hamilton in skill than I think most people realize.

Lindholm could very well be a 50-point player next season, which is definitely something to think about. I think that this trade could go either way.

Michael Ferland may have a similar output to Lindholm, but the former is almost 3 years older. Lindholm is already better than Ferland, so the Flames got the better deal if that were a 1 to 1 trade.

I guess the point is, like in most blockbuster trades, both teams are taking a risk. The Hurricanes are hoping that Dougie Hamilton has what it takes to make them a contender, and the Flames are hoping that Hanifin and Lindholm make up for the loss of Hamilton.

My Opinion

Truthfully, I have no idea how this trade is going to work out. It’s great to have Dougie Hamilton, but I don’t know if it was worth giving up Hanifin and Lindholm. I think it would’ve been fantastic if the Hurricanes had managed to land a goalscorer, rather than cashing in for a better defenseman.

Plus, the goalie situation still hasn’t been worked out. The Hurricanes are a better team than they were before the trade, but they may have sacrificed future potential. This trade could come back to bite us a few years down the road.

Next: A GM's Guide for Next Season (Part I)

Maybe Noah Hanifin will become the face of the Flames. Who knows, maybe Adam Fox will rise above all. The Hurricanes have the entire off-season to prove me wrong, but I ‘m not  sure that I liked this trade.