Latest on Matthew Tkachuk Trade Rumors as Flames are Pissed Off

The Calgary Flames organization is sick and tired of the trade rumors surrounding forward Matthew Tkachuk and are calling BS to the report put out by ex-NHLer Shane O'Brien.

Sportsnet's Ryan Pinder reached out to the Flames after the past few days 'Tkachuk wanting out' rumors were spreading like wild fire and it certainly sparked quite the reaction from the team:

Now we are yet to hear a franchise reply 'yes, the rumors are true' so keep that in your back pocket, but given the Flames struggles and Tkachuk's contract status, there certainly could be some merit here.  

Tkachuk's contract status is likely his biggest leverage point. He's slated to earn $7 million next season and then head into restricted free agency in 2022-23. The interesting tid-bit here is his base salary for next season is $9 million. Why that's significant is the fact he's in the final season of his current deal and holds restricted free-agent status for next season. The NHL Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) mandates a team must offer restricted free agents a qualifying offer equal to 100% of their base salary from the previous season in order for them to maintain restricted status. So if the Flames go the one-year deal route, they will owe Tkachuk $9 million next season and have no leverage the year after as he would be free to sign with any other team. Kudos to Tkachuk's agent for landing him this type of contract.

In regards to the trade rumors, if he does indeed want out, expect to see Tkachuk either traded to the St Louis Blues or Pittsburgh Penguins. A complete dark horse in the race is the Ottawa Senators where he could be reunited with brother Brady. That would make it easier for his parents to pick a favorite team.

Photo credit:  Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports