The St. Louis Blues have long been considered to be buyers in this season’s upcoming trade deadline, but there is one move, in particular, that could change the franchise.
Though the St. Louis Blues may not be elite, they are still a premier team in the NHL, and their place in the standings reflects that statement. They hold the second spot in the Central Division behind the NHL-leading Colorado Avalanche and have the ninth most points overall.
As the deadline to make a trade looms, the Blues are in a spot to make a franchise-alerting trade. These types of deals do not come around very often, but we have seen one trade that general manager Doug Armstrong has made that has already changed the course of Blues history.
On July 1, 2018, the St. Louis Blues acquired future captain Ryan O’Reilly from the Buffalo Sabers for Patrik Berglund, Vladimir Sobotka, and Tage Thompson. O’Reilly would go on to win the team’s first Stanley Cup and was named the playoff MVP that season.
There is just one potential trade that the Blues could make this spring that could potentially change the course of the St. Louis Blues franchise, and that would be acquiring Jakob Chychrun from the Arizona Coyotes.
This type of trade has all different levels of complex maneuvering, the most challenging being whether or not Arizona wants to trade a defenseman of that caliber into their own division. The other factor, and perhaps most obvious, is the Blues’ salary cap issue.
Chychrun is the only player on the market with multiple years of control that fits the Blues’ needs. Sure, St. Louis could go the rental route and attempt to acquire a player like Mark Giordano, Claude Giroux, or Ben Chiarot, but there’s no guarantee they would stick around in St. Louis for a long time.
This trade gives St. Louis elite depth on the blue line and players that fit any situation on the ice. You would still have your shutdown line with Parayko, but your offensive production increases significantly with the addition of Chychrun.
The best part about a trade for Chycrun is his contract situation and his age. The 23-year-old is signed for $4.6 million a year until the end of the 2025 season. However, these perks are going to require a high price to acquire him.
Chyrchrun this season in seventh on the Coyotes in scoring. He has three goals and 13 assists on the year in 43 games. His 16 points would rank fourth among current Blues defensemen.
It’s not really fair to judge his numbers this season. The Coyotes sit dead last in the Central Division with 34 points, and if it weren’t for Clayton Keller‘s season, Arizona’s leading scorer would be Phil Kessel with 33 points.
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If the Blues announced a trade for Chychrun before the deadline, it would not only make them Stanely Cup contenders this season but for the next handful of years. He is the missing piece this organization needs.