162Matthew Tkachuk
Photo Credit: Sergei Belski/USA Today Sports

Offseason update: Brodie getting harder to move, Tkachuk and team aren’t talking

Flames-related news recently has been quiet. Perhaps a little too quiet. Ominously quiet.

On Friday’s edition of the Pinder and Steinberg show, Pat welcomed in Eric Francis via telephone to address the quiet, mostly on the TJ Brodie trade front and the Matthew Tkachuk contract negotiations. As the title has already told you, there’s two major pieces of news dropped, and a whole lot of other important discussions going on.

You can listen to the 22-minute clip here, but here are some of the key points, player by player:

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TJ Brodie: Francis reports that they’re still shopping him, but there’s not much interest right now, citing a person inside the organization that says it’s been “tough” (around seven minutes in). The major issue is that interested teams have already made moves, making it difficult to add Brodie. He suggests that they may need to pair him with “a guy like” Mark Jankowski in order to clear Brodie’s salary. That’s not entirely news, given that those two were Toronto-bound in the cancelled Nazem Kadri deal, but I think that the implication is that the trade return for those two won’t be as good as Kadri.

Michael Frolik: Eleven minutes in, the two briefly touch on Michael Frolik’s trade value. Again, there’s not really anything shocking: Frolik is hard to trade because of his age, his cap hit, and his relative impact on a roster. Francis suggests that teams aren’t willing to give up assets to take Frolik, but also that the Flames aren’t necessarily interested in acquiring any either – they just want to clear his salary. He again suggests that another piece may need to move to make that deal, but doesn’t offer a specific name.

Mark Jankowski: The centre’s name is bandied about a bit, both as part of a package and as a solo deal to clear up a bit of space. Francis says that there’s hesitancy in moving him from Calgary’s perspective a few times (especially at 13 minutes in), but that it might be a necessary sacrifice. He also brings up Sam Bennett (who is apparently still practising faceoffs) and Dillon Dube as potential replacements at centre.

Austin Czarnik: He is also mentioned in trade talk, and Francis says that it is a “possibility” (about 12:30 in), but that it only clears $1.25M in space.

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Travis Hamonic: Around 15 minutes in, both talk about the rumours earlier this season that Hamonic was also on the trade block, dismissing it as other GMs being interested in trading for him rather than the Flames being interested in moving him. They bring up the possibility of him being moved at trade deadline if they feel they can’t come to terms with him, but Steinberg also says that he “wouldn’t be surprised” if Hamonic re-signs for two or three years.

Matthew Tkachuk: The final section of the show (about 16:30 onwards) is dedicated to the Flames’ biggest offseason task. Francis brings up what he feels are the three options for a Tkachuk contract: two years, five years, or seven years. He also believes that the longer the wait goes on, the more likely it is that Tkachuk signs a two-year deal and everyone goes through this all again in 2021. Francis also throws in that he doesn’t believe that Tkachuk is signed to start the season, though he does see him as a Calgary Flame.

After that, Steinberg really drops the hammer, not only agreeing with Francis’ assessment that Tkachuk misses part of the season, but revealing that Tkachuk and the club aren’t even talking (18 minutes). There’s no specific holdup mentioned (it might just be a staring contest, as Steinberg says that silence is what the agent wants. They don’t want to be the first RFA domino to fall), but term is likely the issue. In his conversations with various agents, Francis believes that most RFAs in this offseason are set on big money deals that take them right to UFA, and then cashing in on the market. Tkachuk’s side is pushing for that, while the Flames are pushing for more.

  • BendingCorners

    I’m pretty sure Tkachuk will sign before December 1st, but if he doesn’t … how many think the Flames can make the playoff without him? Cheers for yes, trashes for no.

    • BlueMoonNigel

      With or without Chucky, the Flames are going to be in tough to make the playoffs as I don’t see any wildcards coming out of the Pac this season. How SJ finishes top 3 in the Pac every season is a mystery which I am not betting against this season. Vegas is a lock for top 3. Canucks and Coyotes have improved this offseason. Enough to break into the top3? That’s why they play 82 games. It should also be noted that the Ducks will not be in rebuild very long. Their NHL-ready young talent is impressive. They could overachieve and reach top 3 this season, but more likely it will be in 20-21. That leaves the Flames and Oilers duking it out for who cares what. Of last season’s playoff clubs from the west, it’s a toss-up who has had the worst offseason–the Jets or the Flames. Jets could still make the playoffs as a wildcard, an avenue closed to the Flames, so unless Tre upgrades the talent by the TDL, this could be a long, hard winter for Flames’ fans such that our only hope is the thought of the photo op of Kenny King and Jeff Davison wearing hard hats and holding shovels during a breaking-ground ceremony for the new barn. Yahoo!

  • BlueMoonNigel

    So Chucky should accept less dough for the sake of the team? Sure and then what doe Tre do? Trades for Lucic’s worst contract in the NHL. To expect Chucky to accept less because of the likes of Lucic is absolutely inappropriate and disrespectful to Chucky, his agent and Chucky’s family.

    • Bobby Bitman

      Not sure he should accept “less”. But he’s sure as hell is not worth 8-9. If tre signs him for that amount it’s just the start of trouble. How’d you like to be JG or Gio and in struts MT to the room making 8.5? Especially if he holds out and misses camp or the beginning of the season. I agree with some other posters on here…here is your offer Matthew, if it’s not enough, enjoy NHL Center Ice for the season.

      • BlueMoonNigel

        No skin off Chucky’s nose as was born with a silver spoon in his mouth. Mom and Dad have his old bedroom ready and available should he need it for short or long-term use. Chuck’s gonna get the bucks whether it is in Cal or elsewhere.

      • Theo/14

        Inherited a non moveable contact. Inherited a contract that cannot be bought out. Inherited a player who cannot stick handle,
        Pass or skate. But hey we got an extra half mill in cap space lol

        • BendingCorners

          Except Lucic’s contract apparently is movable – it has moved once after all. But you’re right, Neal can’t do any of those things so replacing him with another player who also can’t but who costs less must be a bad idea.

        • Trevy

          Aren’t you a bundle of positivity. It was two players that are beyond their prime and weren’t motivated to play with their respective teams anymore. One bad contract for another. The deed is done, get over it and move on

        • Arthur-Leigh Adekunle Tig Junior Elvis

          “Inherited a non moveable contact. Inherited a contract that cannot be bought out”

          It was unmovable for Edmonton, but it’s not as bad for us with them picking up some of the tab. If he’s bought out in two years time, it’s like $3.6 million year 1, $4.9 year 2 and then only $560k years 3 & 4. We actually save $1.4 million in years 3 & 4 from what Neal’s exact same buyout would be.

        • Arthur-Leigh Adekunle Tig Junior Elvis

          “Inherited a player who cannot stick handle, pass or skate. But hey we got an extra half mill in cap space”

          Lucic was better than Neal was at passing and skating last year from my viewings and all the underlying data suggests the same. I mean Neal couldn’t even keep up to Tkachuk who isn’t a really a standout skater at all. Neal was absolutely atrocious and played with way better linemates than Lucic did. Lucic is also a year younger than Neal.

          Neal has spent the majority of his career playing with Brad Richards in Dallas, Crosby/Malkin in Pittsburgh and Fillip Forsberg in Nashville. It’s funny when we signed him last year I was hopeful, but my friend whose a massive Pittsburgh fan said one thing to me that scared the crap out of me and it seems incredibly right from watching Neal last year. Whenever Malkin would go down with injury and he wasn’t with Crosby or vice versa Neal would absolutely disappear. Then this summer, I was talking to a Dallas fan and he said the exact same thing. The reason Neal was traded from Dallas is back then Richards got injured one year and Neal didn’t score a single goal without him for like 10-12 games and just completely disappeared off the map and was basically unplayable. Neal is a Bottom. 6 winger whose just been elevated his entire career from playing with elite centres. The only way Neal cracks even 10 goals again is if he’s playing with McDavid and I don’t think you want Neal anywhere near McDavid long term, so I doubt that lasts. AND AT LEAST LUCIC IS TOUGH!! The both suck, but at least Lucic can beat the crap out of the odd person and he isn’t terrible driving the play like Neal was last year.

  • BendingCorners

    It’s Sunday and it’s raining here on the Wet Coast. Before I go for a walk, here’s an observation, followed by trade ideas in separate posts, for cheering and trashing, naturally.
    The observation is that Treliving appears to be of the same mind as Skylardog and WW – the team needs more grit up front, and he tried to get Kadri and Brown from the Leafs and Zucker from the Wild. Not sure the trades below bring back as much, but maybe they work?

      • Arthur-Leigh Adekunle Tig Junior Elvis

        Most projections have us finishing Top. 3 in the West even if goaltending is just average or slightly below. If it’s good we basically run away with the Pacific and are a Top. 3 Team in the league again. Mang and Valimaki became possession forces in the second half and most in the industry think they will make even bigger strides next season with more opportunity, plus Dube led all U21s in AHL PPG and is projected to possibly take the next step for us, so the internal growth could totally offset a loss. Honestly trading away a Jankowksi could actually turn into a positive increase if Dube steps up next year.

        It’s funny everyone has Colorado taking a step forward, but Tyson Barrie is a massive loss that a rookie like Makar will struggle to fill in just his first full NHL season. Barries had 59 Points last year, go look at who’s as the last NHL rookie defender to crack 60 Points before coming at me. I also watched Bowen Bryan 9 Times live last year, he’s got to learn how to play defence first before he becomes an everyday NHLer, he needs at least one more year in the WHL.

        • Kneedroptalbot

          Pacific Division, in my view…
          1. Las Vegas
          2. San Jose
          3. Calgary or Van, (depends on the goal tending).
          The rest. Arizona and Edmonton might be close? L.A. and Anaheim both in transition.

  • BendingCorners

    Trade #1 – Washington needs a bit of cap space. Flames can only do this if they follow up with another trade, but if they sign Petrovic then flip him to the Capitals along with a pick for Jansen, the Capitals save some space without touching their forwards and without affecting their top-4 D. The Flames get a reasonable third pair RD, which will help once they trade Brodie (#2, below).

  • BendingCorners

    Trade #2 – Brodie to Anaheim for Rakell. Anaheim needs another RD for their top 4, and has the cap space. Flames need another RHS forward and Rakell is at least a little bit gritty, I think. Flames gain a little cap space doing this.

  • BendingCorners

    Trade #3 – also with Anaheim because once the Flames take Rakell the Ducks will be in the market for another forward. Frolik for Sprong (RHS) and Terry (another RHS). Ducks might want to substitute some other prospect for Terry since he could need up being quite good (or not, too soon to tell), or may want Jankowski too. Flames get cap space and some potentially useful RHS forwards, Ducks get a useful forward so they can try to squeeze one more playoff season out of Getzlaf. Not sure hey give up Terry though.

  • Garry T

    Brad has surprised us in the past. I think Brad gets a $$$ 22,000,000.00 Deal done for four years with Tkachuk. That’s 5.5 per year x 4. We have the cap space to do that. We also have the cap space to sign Mangiapane for 1.75 each of a five year extension. Now you need to create a cushion. Offer
    Up Czarnik to the entire league for a second and a 3 rd. If that is not a go, do a Czarnik for Pulujarvi with Edmonton. I have this feeling he was handled poorly. Life is a little worrisome at the moment and this guy has pride!
    I think he is worth the risk, he has wheels, skill, size and might be the guy who can keep up with Johnny. Really work with him and he might just surprise.

    I have pushed for this deal for a while and I do that by thinking a bunch of scouts ranked this guy real high. They can’t all be idiots. Someone will come calling for one of our core forwards or D. That would be a high end prospect and 2nd and 3rd. Rounder type of deal we need to do for cap space. Stone is gone so that saved $3.5 for this year and costs us $1.6 and change over the next couple of seasons. Doing this, our team is in place, we have improved our forward position, coaching staff can turn our D into a stronger unit with the right systems. I know a lot on here said I was full of crap for handling Tkachuk with a bit of an edge, but most are now on side with my thought process.


    We keep TJ, we Keep Frolik and give both a chance to earn anew contract.
    I would get both on the phone and say you’re staying at least until the trade deadline. Now show us why you should be extended.

    • BringtheFire 2.0

      Just to clarify, are you suggesting that Chucky will sign for a cap hit of 5.5 million per year? Because if that is what you’re suggesting, well, I think it isn’t a realistic suggestion.

      • BringtheFire 2.0

        Nigel, in reference to your earlier comment about Tre’s strategy being like the American Vietnam strategy, it isn’t: Vietnam was a horrible death factory where countless young men and women died for nothing. Please don’t link it to hockey, a sport here for our entertainment. One has nothing to do with the other and remembering Vietnam bums me out.

        Also, if you would accept a polite observation: you try too hard with your comments. I don’t know if you’re insecure, if you want to appear clever and/or intelligent, but sometimes your references are straight out of left field and wildly inappropriate. Most of the time, instead of appearing intelligent and clever, they appear awkward and contrived.

        If you don’t accept my second paragraph, that’s cool. But, in the future, if you could at least leave the politics and war references out of the hockey comments, I think a number of people here would appreciate it.

        But in the end, you do you, man. Thanks.

        • Oil Spilly

          “if you would accept a polite observation”
          then just goes on to bash him. Lol

          In my honest opinion it can be awkward reading some of your comments btf. I would compare them with your reference of “out of left field” at times. I hope you accept this.


        • BlueMoonNigel

          You seem to have a lot of issues with my comments. Fair enough. Just don’t read them. Scroll, baby, scroll.

          As I know it’s the moderator’s job to bin inappropriate and offensive comments. I am quite sure he is more than capable of doing his job without deputizing you.

          You’re final paragraph is spot on. I gotta be me! I gotta be me!

        • Off the wall

          Good grief BTF. Have you got nothing better to do than monopolize this forum because YOU don’t think a comment is appropriate?
          It’s one thing when this forum gets out of hand with fake accounts and constant trolling, however it’s another thing when you tell other’s what they should or shouldn’t say…

          What’s next? We’re not allowed to tell stories because they add no real value? Well there goes my schtick….

          Excuse me if I’m being a little forward, however you were born LONG after the Vietnam war. Many of us on here, actually were alive during that period.
          Your preoccupation with being offended is actually quite ambiguous.

          Maybe you’re the one trying too hard?

    • Budgie

      Tkachuk won’t be signing anytime soon, not until some signings of other RFAs happens-I hope you are right-5.5 but I think he will get 7-8–the team can’t wait for Tkachuk, sign Mangiapanne before Tkachuk-move forward, Tkachuk may want too much anyways

  • Off the wall

    Good day for a story. It’s long.

    Mrs Otw, my step-son and I were in Vegas for the last week.
    Being stifling HOT all week, we would fill our water bottles with ice and water, for the trek of the day. Every day I’d go to the ice machine and fill up our bucket.

    One day the ice maker wasn’t working, so Otw in his wisdom, decided to go down a floor in the hotel and fill the bucket there.

    I saw the “exit stairs” sign, so I took the stairwell. Bad idea. It locks you out on exit, ( which I didn’t realize) so I had 16 floors to go down, then through a half a mile maze of hallways until I finally reached an exit I could get out. By this time, ( 25 minutes later) I’m fit to be tied and steaming hot.

    Upon exiting the building, I’m greeted by a Keystone cop, who asks me for identification. I’m already furious, so I tell him, “Here’s my id, it’s a f’ing ice bucket”. Why are you asking me for id, when ya know I’m looking for a ice machine that works!”

    Keystone doesn’t like my reply, so he asks my room # and my name. I told him my name was “Johnny Bucket” which he radioed to the hotel to verify I was this guest at the hotel.
    “ No Johnny Bucket on our guest list. You’ll have to come with me”

    “ Pal, can’t you understand sarcasm,” I replied. I’m not going anywhere with you, just find me a damn ice machine that works!”

    By this time, another Keystone cop has come along. They decide that since I’m being uncooperative, that they would take me to the Security office.
    After being detained for another half hour, all the while Mrs Otw has been fervently looking all over the hotel for me. What was a 3 minute job, turned into over an hour, with an unhappy Otw, and still no damn ice!

    Apparently, the exit has (tiny print beside the door) which states that upon exit, an alarm will sound and no re- entry is permitted.

    I didn’t have my glasses on, so I couldn’t read it. All I saw was the BIG exit sign. I took a picture of the sign and went to the hotel manager to show him. “ How the heck is anyone supposed to read this. It’s tiny, in red and there was no damn alarm when I went down the stairwell “
    “ Oh, it’s a silent alarm, “ says the Manager.
    “Huh, you mean to tell me that I’m supposed to know it’s a silent alarm and be able to read that small print?” Why isn’t the damn sign on the door, how come it’s on the right side, nowhere near the door?”

    “Good question, he says , we should really look into that”
    “ You think, I replied. I’m sure I’m not the only person to do this. Why on earth would you not put it on the door and make the font large enough for half blind buggers like me to read?”

    Five minutes later, I got $165 US funds taken off my hotel bill and had a full bucket of ice!

    The moral of the story?
    Ice is a necessity in the HOT weather. ( 37- 43C )

    Ice is needed to play hockey. Both are important for different reasons.

    Don’t be surprised if Tkachuk sits out for a bit. He might have taken the stairwell, but he’ll eventually get his ice!

  • CantstandyaOilers2

    Trade Tkchuk, he was a NO SHOW in the playoffs, he should not be making more than JG, SM and MG…he is a great regular season player, teams will pay a lot for him…trade him and Brodie to Ottawa, there are great young assets current and future the Flames can get back…Lucic is gonna help BIG time, he will bring other pieces to the table, leadership, tenacity, toughness and he is a BEAST, love this guy, glad the Oilers traded him to us, McDavid was injury free since Lucic signed with Oileds