If you were constantly searching message boards and refreshing Twitter and Reddit watching the summer spectacle of the Calgary Flames, Milan Lucic was right there with you.
Lucic, a mainstay in the Flames’ leadership group, watched all the breaking news unfold on the web — just as fans did.
“Through social media like you guys and everyone else,” said Lucic, who has a healthy following on Twitter.
Lucic would’ve been scrolling when free agency opened, watching teammate Johnny Gaudreau opt for a seven-year pact to leave Calgary for the Columbus Blue Jackets. He would’ve been swiping when the news broke that Matthew Tkachuk, a restricted free agent, wasn’t returning on a long-term pact, either.
He certainly got alerted when the Flames moved Tkachuk to the Florida Panthers for a package that returned Jonathan Huberdeau and MacKenzie Weegar.
The latter fired up the team’s group chat.
“At the start, not much was said,” Lucic admitted. “Once the trade happened with Tkachuk, obviously a lot of action. So yeah, just to add to the drama of the summer.
“I was here in North America when it was all going down. I was in the Pacific Time Zone. Some of the guys in the Eastern time zone were gearing down for bed or already in bed when stuff was happening. It was dinner time when stuff was happening for me, out west.”
"We have a lot to do, a lot to prove."
Milan Lucic checks in to discuss the upcoming season and the team's mentality heading into the 2022-23 campaign. pic.twitter.com/S5qIGAmREJ
— Calgary Flames (@NHLFlames) September 24, 2022
The moves, which also featured the signing of unrestricted free agent centre Nazem Kadri to a seven-year contract, have helped bolster Calgary’s odds for the upcoming season. The Flames have the second-best odds of winning the Western Conference and sixth-best odds of winning the Stanley Cup, according to Stake.
“I think that’s the best word for it — a lot of drama. A lot of things happened. A lot of moving parts,” Lucic said. “I think our management team did a good job of handling it the way that they did. Now it’s up to us as players and coaching staff to put it all together and go out there and do what we can do.”
A slight nod, perhaps, that Lucic can stop scrolling.
At least momentarily.
“Honestly for me personally, I don’t really read into too much of the message board or rumours and all that type of stuff because a lot of time rumours are just rumours,” Lucic said. “Until something actually happens, it’s just noise. That’s just kind of from experience, but obviously, it’s hard to ignore, especially in the world we live in today.
“There’s so much info, there are so many people putting out they heard this, they heard that. You kind of pay attention to it, but in one ear, not the other.”