Oddly enough, it was these same Flames that had earlier bought out the remaining year of Stone’s three-year deal back in August, spelling what looked like and early end to the 28-year-old’s time in Alberta. Despite the grievances, this way around proved to be a sly way of legal salary cap manipulation, falling within the rules of the current collective bargaining agreement.
After buying out the final year of a three-year, $10.5 million deal that Stone signed prior to the 2017-18 NHL season, the Flames took a month off between negotiations with their third-year defenceman, before agreeing upon a league-minimum $700K cap hit for the 2019-20 season. In doing so, Calgary will only be charged $1.867 million against the cap for the upcoming season to have the 6-foot-3, 210-pound defender on their roster, as compared to the $3.5 million originally assigned.
Following six seasons within the Phoenix/Arizona Coyotes organization, Stone was moved to the Flames partway through the 2016-17 season. In 113 games with Calgary, he has five goals, 21 points and 58 penalty minutes. In 439 career NHL tilts, Stone has 29 goals, 117 points and 248 penalty minutes. He is expected to lock down a spot on the Flames’ bottom defence pair in the upcoming weeks.