St. Louis Blues fans have been yearning for the team to acquire Matthew Tkachuk and Brady Tkachuk, but which one of the brothers should they look at first?
It didn’t take long after Matthew Tkachuk and Brady Tkachuk came into the league that St. Louis Blues fans wanted the team to acquire them. Still, the timing of a potential trade became more complicated for one player and easier for the other.
Last offseason, Brady was the more straightforward player for the Blues to acquire. The Calgary Flames were on the downside of a bad COVID season but are not that far removed from being the top seed in the Western Conference.
The Senators, meanwhile, have not been competitive in a few years, and although they had a promising farm system, they could have gotten a big return for Brady if they decided to move on from him before signing him to a big contract.
Unfortunately for Blues fans, not only did Ottowa sign Brady for the next seven years, but they also named him team captain.
Brady’s captaincy makes it incredibly difficult for St. Louis to acquire him. However, the contract shouldn’t bother the Blues as he is carrying an $8.2 million cap hit for the length of his deal.
What changes here is the Senator’s plan to make him the backbone of their franchise for the next 10 years, and for good reason.
Since breaking into the league in 2018, Brady has been a productive player and has become a very versatile player. He has two 20-goal seasons under his belt in three years and has recently adopted the ability to be a physical net-front presence and a bit of a pest on the ice.
The Blues (or any NHL team) would jump at the opportunity to acquire a player who can score 25 goals a year and stand in front of the net on the powerplay. Brady is a Pat Maroon-type player, except if Maroon could score 25 goals a year.
Matthew, meanwhile, should be the target for the Blues now. He is making $7 million this year and is an RFA after the season ends. However, like his brother Brady, he will command a massive contract.
Matthew is much more of a creative offensive threat than Brady, and his numbers show it. In 377 NHL games over six seasons, he has netted 122 goals, 179 assists, and 301 points.
He slots in on just about any team’s top line in the NHL. The potential of a trade for Matthew becomes even more intriguing because of the team’s rank in the Pacific Division.
Despite a red-hot start to the season, Calgary has 36 points and is tied for fourth in the Pacific. However, Calgary seems to be in limbo with the way their roster is constructed, they could go for it and try to be one of the best teams in the West, or they could sell off assets and get a considerable return for some marquee players.
For Blues fans, you should hope for the latter, but St. Louis does have some options if they want to acquire him over the next few years.
As an RFA after the season, the Blues could try and clear some cap space in order to offer sheet Matthew to the extent where the Flames would consider letting him go. As a St. Louisan, Matthew could wait it out and sign with St. Louis in free agency.
The Blues shouldn’t be concerned with any no-move clause in their contracts, but if they had to choose one player to target first, they should go after Matthew before his brother Brady.