Hamilton eager to get started with Flames

Lewis Hamilton wearing a costume

The two sides agreed on a multi-year contract Tuesday, after the Flames acquired the rights to the 22-year-old defenceman from the Boston Bruins on June 26 in exchange for Calgary’s 2015 first round pick (No. 15) and two second round picks two second-round picks (Nos. 45 and 52) at the 2015 draft.

And Hamilton couldn’t be happier.

“Looking at the team, it’s a young team with a lot of great players and I think a great future and a great plan in place,” he said. “I think any situation that has that, it’s going to be exciting to be a part of that. I think that continues on with the fans and the city. I had some experiences there at the World Juniors and had a lot of fun playing there and being there and even just watching the playoffs this year and seeing the fans and the ‘C of Red’ and all that. I think it obviously shows the fans and fan support in the city. That’s something that is also really exciting.

“I think there’s really a lot of things that are really exciting. I’m really looking forward to it.”

That excitement is reciprocated.

Hamilton led Bruins defencemen in assists (32) and points (42) in 2014-15 and, at 22, averaged 21:20 per game playing primarily alongside Zdeno Chara. Overall, Hamilton finished sixth in team scoring and has 83 points in 178 NHL games in three seasons.

He was originally selected in the first round (No. 9) in the 2011 draft.

“It’s an exciting day for the Calgary Flames,” general manager Brad Treliving said. “We were able to acquire Dougie Hamilton’s rights at the draft last weekend. It was at that point, Friday afternoon, that we completed the transaction and it was immediately upon doing that that we got to work on trying to finalize a new contract for Dougie.

“We are excited, as you can all imagine, to add Dougie to our fold, not only what he brings to us on the ice but the personality and the teammate that he’s going to be off of the ice.”

After acquiring Hamilton’s rights, Treliving called signing the 6-foot-5, 220-pound defenceman a priority and, alongside 11 other restricted free agents, qualified him Monday.

A contract came just 24 hours later.

And Hamilton can’t wait to get started.

“I didn’t know I was going to be a Flame until, I guess, today, or when I was traded to them,” Hamilton said. “It’s something that your life can change pretty quick and it’s part of the business and everything. For me, I’m looking forward to it. I’ve heard a lot of good things and some text messages from players around the league and stuff like that, that have told me how nice it is there. I’m going to fit in well.

“There’s a lot of things that continue to excite me about the organization, the team and the city. It’s all just building for me. Unfortunately there’s still a lot of time left in the summer and I can’t go there and start playing right now.”

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