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Hanifin: Future with Flames 'definitely on my mind'

Rich Graessle / National Hockey League / Getty

Noah Hanifin knows the time is near to make a decision on his future with the Calgary Flames.

The pending unrestricted free-agent defenseman could be one of the most attractive names available before the March 8 trade deadline if he doesn't agree to a new contract with the franchise he's called home for six seasons.

"It's definitely on my mind - I'd be lying if I said it wasn't," Hanifin said, per Sportsnet's Eric Francis. "But I'm just trying to control what I can, and that's just playing hockey and trying to perform and help the team get wins."

Hanifin's been involved in trade rumors since last summer. He told the club he didn't want to sign an extension during the offseason but later clarified he's willing to sign long term at some point.

The Flames halted extension talks with several key UFAs after a poor start to the season, and general manager Craig Conroy has already dealt away Tyler Toffoli, Nikita Zadorov, and Elias Lindholm. Hanifin and fellow blue-liner Chris Tanev remain with the club as potential big-ticket trade pieces.

Calgary offered Hanifin an eight-year extension, according to Francis. Hanifin's current deal pays him $4.95 million annually, and he's projected to get a notable raise on his next contract.

He's notched 28 points in 51 games this season while averaging a career-high 23:38 per contest. The Flames acquired the 2015 fifth overall pick, along with Lindholm, from the Carolina Hurricanes in 2018.

Calgary is one point back of the second wild-card spot in the Western Conference with 31 games to play.

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