It seems unlikely the Flames will see injured defenceman Juuso Valimaki suit up when the NHL season resumes on Aug. 1. A combination of things lead me to that conclusion, from Valimaki’s expansion draft eligibility to Calgary’s depth on the blueline. Nothing is impossible, but with all the information we have now, I wouldn’t expect to see Valimaki back in game action until next season.
As it stands, the understanding is Valimaki’s expansion draft status hangs in the balance based on whether he plays this season. While it remains officially unconfirmed, the thought for many months has been Valimaki would become eligible for next summer’s Seattle expansion draft if he were to play this season.