After Shane O’Brien’s made comments  that caught a lot of attention, the rumors started to circulate regarding talk that Matthew Tkachuk might want to leave the Calgary Flames and play for the St. Louis Blues. O’Brien called it one of those rumors that was making the rounds during “silly time”, but he seemed confident in saying that he’d heard it was a trade that could happen.

The Calgary Flames call bull.

Sportsnet 960’s Ryan Pinder and host on The Fan960 talked on Monday about the Tkachuk rumors and noted: “In reaching out to some folks around the organization they described these rumors in two words. The first one being bull. The second one sounding a lot like shirt.” 

We shouldn’t really be surprised at the reaction by the Flames. Where there’s any truth to the rumors or not, the Flames are never going to acknowledge that Tkachuk might want a change of scenery. One, it doesn’t help them if they were to make a trade as the leverage goes away once other teams know the player wants out. Two, it doesn’t make sense to send ripples through the team or the Flames’ fan base that their best player doesn’t want to be a Flame anymore.

The reality is, the rumor was probably never true, at least not in the way that a formal trade request would have been made. We’ll see if the Flames denying the report through a member of the Sportsnet media will quiet down the chatter or if this rumor will continue to gain steam through the expansion draft, the NHL Entry Draft and free agency. Typically, once this kind of thing is out there, it never really goes away.

Tkachuk Hasn’t Said Anything

Not that he has to, but Tkachuk has yet to respond. Perhaps it’s because the rumor isn’t from terribly credible source or perhaps he just doesn’t want to give the story life, but if Tkachuk were to come out and say he hasn’t requested a trade or he has no desire to leave Calgary, that might put it to rest. Then again, Johnny Gaudreau has publicly said he’s not looking to leave the Flames and there is constantly trade talk surrounding him.

The problem for Calgary is that they struggled so badly this past season. Any time a team doesn’t perform well, there will be talk of change. Often, it’s other teams who get the rumors going because it’s easy to say the best player from a struggling franchise no longer wants to be there. This time, it might be the Blues media who made a story out of one that wasn’t really there.

This article first appeared on NHL Trade Talk and was syndicated with permission.

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