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May 23, 2012 | 10:09am ET
Flames are busy, but quiet
TheFourthPeriod.com

While the Flames remain mum about their current activities, the Calgary Herald reveals that GM Jay Feaster has a lot on his plate this off-season.

The first order of business is the hiring of a new head coach to take over for the departed Brent Sutter, though Feaster has made it clear no timetable has been established.

"I would say by the end of this month, it would be more in the middle innings of the game," Feaster told the Herald. "We don't think it's in our best interests to set an artificial deadline."

While there is a short-list of candidates for the vacant position, the names of potential contenders are expected to remain secret.

"It's a workable list," Feaster said, "and then we're going to get to the process of interviewing.

"We're not going to conduct the search in public. I don't think it does us any good to do our business in public."

Feaster is applying the same secrecy to his six pending unrestricted free agents, which include Olli Jokinen, Tom Kostopoulos, Cory Sarich, Scott Hannan, Lee Stempniak and David Moss, and his five restricted free agents, Blake Comeau, Blair Jones, Mikael Backlund, Leland Irving and Akim Aliu.

"At this point, there's nothing," Feaster said of any developments. "We're making our decisions internally. When the appropriate time comes to disclose that, we'll do it."

As for the NHL Draft, Feaster is likely to build a list of prospects to target. He has not ruled out the possibility of a blockbuster trade, minor transaction or anything in between before the draft or on the floor from June 22 to 24 in Pittsburgh.

"That's part of the normal course of business -- conversations with other GMs about the possibility of trades," Feaster said. "Our objective is we have to improve the hockey team. Where we've been the last three years is not where we want to be."

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